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Roger W. Babcock Jr.

Roger W. Babcock Jr.

Professor of Civil, Environmental and Construction Engineering
Office: Holmes Hall 346
Phone: (808) 956-7298
Related Web Page: Water Resources Research Center

Areas of Specialty and Research Interest

  • Environmental engineering: Biological wastewater treatment
  • Membrane bioreactors
  • Wastewater recycling/reuse
  • Green roofs
  • Genetic fingerprinting for assessing bacterial diversity
  • On-site wastewater treatment
  • Environmental water quality


  • Ph.D., Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of California, Los Angeles, 1991
  • M.S., Civil and Environmental Engineering, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, 1989
  • B.S., Civil Engineering, University of California, Davis, 1987

Professional Registration

  • Registered Professional Engineer (PE) in Civil Engineering: No. 51325, California; No. 12133 Hawaii


  • Assistant, Associate and Full Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Hawaii at Manoa, 1995-present
  • Associate Director – Engineering, National Science Foundation (NSF) MarBEC Engineering Research Center, University of Hawaii at Manoa, 1999-2001
  • Visiting Scholar, Institute for Process Engineering, Technical University of Berlin, Germany, 1994
  • Project Engineer, Carollo Engineers, Walnut Creek, California, 1992-93

Courses Taught ( in the last five years)

  • CEE330: Environmental Engineering (S’15, S’16, S’17, S’18, S’19, S’20)
  • CEE431: Water and Wastewater Engineering (F’15, F’16, F’17, F’18, F’19, F’20)
  • CEE489B: Surveying & AutoCAD (F’15, F’16, F’17, F’18, F’19, F’20)
  • CEE489C: Professional Ethics (F’15, F’16, F’17, F’18, F’19, F’20)
  • CEE499: Special Problems (F’15, S’16, F’16, S’17, F’17, S’18, F’18, S’19, F’19, S’20)
  • CEE490: Senior Design Project  (S’15, S’16, S’17, S’18, S’19, S’20)
  • CEE634: Biological Treatment
  • CEE635: Environmental Chemistry

Professional Activities

  • Secretary, the Hawaii Council of Engineering Societies (HCES), 2019-2020
  • Member/Chair, Board of Certification of Operating Personnel in Wastewater Treatment Plants, State of Hawaii, 1996-2003, 2011-2019
  • Member, UH Manoa Faculty Senate, 2001-2002
  • President, College of Engineering Faculty Senate, 2006-2007
  • Chair, UH Manoa General Education Ethics Board, 2005-2007
  • Faculty Advisor, ASCE Student Chapter, 2001-2003, 2005-present
  • Member, UH Manoa Graduate Council, 2006-2012, 2016-2019
  • Member, UH Ethics Committee, 2008-present
  • Chair, Civil Engineering Graduate Program, 2009-2020
  • Treasurer, Secretary, Vice-President, President Elect, President, Past President, ASCE Hawaii Section, 2006-2012
  • Technical Program Chair, EWRI World Congress, 2008
  • Technical Program Co-Chair, EWRI World Congress, 2009
  • Director, HI Statewide Wastewater Operator Training Center, 2010-present
  • Secretary/Treasurer, Vice-President, President, Past President, Hawaii Water Environment Association of WEF, 2016-2020


  • 2020 Recipient of  Board of Regents Medal for Excellence in Teaching from the University of Hawaii at Mānoa
  • State of Hawaii Engineer of the Year, 2019
  • ASCE Student Chapter Faculty Advisor Award, 2002, 2018
  • ASCE Faculty Advisor Certificate of Commendation, 2003, 2004, 2008
  • College of Engineering Faculty Service Award, 2018
  • Manoa Sustainability Teaching Award, 2006
  • ASCE Hawaii Section, Outstanding Civil Engineering Achievement Award, Best Study/Research Project, 2009
  • Hi Chang Chai Excellence in Teaching Award, 2009, 2015, 2018, 2021
  • Order of the Engineer, Outstanding Link Coordinator, 2014

Research Grants

  1. Babcock, R.W.Jr. (PI) “Hydrodynamics and mass transfer in tubular photobioreactor systems,” funded by National Science Foundation MarBEC Engineering Research Center, November 1998-October 2001.
  2. Babcock, R.W.Jr. (PI) “Evaluation of potential irrigation impacts on groundwater,” funded by DOD – Army COE, Waterways Exp. Sta., April 2003-April 2004
  3. Babcock, R.W.Jr. (PI) “Pilot-scale regeneration of granular activated carbon,” funded by Board of Water Supply, City/County of Honolulu, November 2002-December 2004
  4. Babcock, R.W.Jr. (PI) “Sequential anaerobic-aerobic biodegradation of PCBs and PAHs in phytoremediation cuttings using slurry reactors and composters,” funded by Environet Inc., May 2002-October 2003.
  5. Babcock, R.W.Jr. (PI) “Honolulu membrane bioreactor pilot test,” funded by WateReuse Foundation/Kennedy-Jenks/City-County of Honolulu, June 2003-May 2007.
  6. Babcock, R.W.Jr. (PI) “Identification and control of membrane bioreactor biofouling organisms using genetic fingerprinting,” funded by USGS, Water Research Institute Program, March 2006-February 2008.
  7. Babcock, R.W.Jr. (PI) “Hilo landfill leachate treatability study,” funded by Hawaii County/ERM Inc., June 2008-December 2009.
  8. Babcock, R.W.Jr. (PI) “Measurement of phytoremediation and biodegradation of RDX, HMX, DNT and related compounds in the tropical environment,” funded by DOD-ESTCP/Environet Inc., February 2007-August 2010.
  9. Babcock, R.W.Jr. (co-PI) “On-site sewage disposal system inspection protocol development,” funded by Hawaii Department of Health, June 2008-November 2010.
  10. Babcock, R.W.Jr. (PI) “Green roof design study,” funded by UH Manoa Facilities, September 2011-June 2012
  11. Babcock, R.W.Jr. (PI) “Sediment Retention at Honokwai Structure #8,” funded by State of Hawaii, DLNR, Division of Aquatic Resources, October 2013-September 2014
  12. Babcock, R.W.Jr. (PI) “Evaluation of several types of granular activated carbon (GAC) for adsorption of Trichloropropane (TCP) in different matrices,” funded by AECOM Inc, December 2013-December 2014
  13. Babcock, R.W.Jr. (PI) “Performance of a residential wastewater system study”, funded by Envirocycle Worldwide Inc, July 2012-March 2015
  14. Babcock, R.W.Jr. (PI) “Nutrient and sediment contributions from urban storm water,” funded by National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, November 2014-June 2017
  15. Wastewater treatment for point source processing and reuse
  16. Babcock, R.W.Jr. (co-PI) “Assessing the vulnerability of coastal wastewater infrastructure to climate change,” funded by Sea Grant, University of Hawaii, February 2016-July 2018
  17. Babcock, R.W.Jr. (PI) “Demonstration study of high-rate flotation/contactor treatment of raw wastewater,” funded by RM Towill Corp, March 2016-May 2019
  18. Babcock, R.W.Jr. (PI) “Investigation of cesspool upgrade alternatives for Upcountry Maui,” funded by Department of Health, SDWB, June 2018-June 2019

Selected Publications

  1. Babcock, R. W. Jr., McNair, D.A., Edling, L.A., and Nagato, H. (2004) Evaluation of a system for residential treatment and reuse of wastewater. J. Environ. Engin. ASCE 130(7): 766-773.
  2. Khan, E., Babcock R. W. Jr., Hsu, T.-M., and Lin, H. (2005) Mineralization and Biodegradability Enhancement of Low Level p-Nitrophenol in Water Using Fenton”s Reagent. J. Environ. Engin. ASCE131(2): 327-331.
  3. Babcock, R. W. Jr., Lin, B., and Spengler, S. (2006) Use of boron as a tracer for recycled water in brackish aquifers.  J. Environ. Eng. ASCE 132(8): 862-871.
  4. Jiang, P., Chen, H.-T., Babcock, R. W. Jr., and Stenstrom, M. K. (2009) Modeling ozone mass transfer in reclaimed wastewater. Wat. Environ. Res. 81:57-68.
  5. Leu, S-Y, Babcock, R. W. Jr., Tzeng, C.J., and Stenstrom, M.K. (2009) Modeling the Performance of Hazardous Wastes Removal in Bioaugmented Activated Sludge Processes. Wat. Environ. Res. 81:2309-2319.
  6. Lamichhane K and Babcock R W Jr (2012) An economic appraisal of using source separation of human urine to contain and treat endocrine disrupters in the USA. J Environ. Monitoring 14: 2557-2565.
  7. Lamichhane K, Babcock R W Jr, Turnbull S J, and Schenck S (2012) Molasses enhanced phyto and bioremediation treatability study of explosives contaminated Hawaiian soils. J. Hazard. Mater. 243: 334-339.
  8. Lamichhane K and Babcock R W Jr (2013) Survey of attitudes and perceptions of urine-diverting toilets and human waste recycling in Hawaii. Sci. of Total Environ. 443: 749-756.
  9. Payne Z M, Lamichhane K, Babcock R W Jr, and Turnbull S J (2013) Pilot-scale in-situ bioremediation of HMX and RDX in soil pore water in Hawaii. J. Environ. Sci.: Process Impacts. 15 (11): 2023-2029.
  10. Huang T, Jia R, Xia S, and Babcock R W Jr (2014) Effect of various parameters on microbial communities in membrane bioreactors treating municipal wastewater.  Frensius Environ. Bul. 23(4): 976-985.
  11. Li Y and Babcock R W Jr, (2014) Green roof hydrologic performance and modeling: A review. Wat. Sci. Tech. 69 (4): 727-738.
  12. Li Y and Babcock R W Jr, (2014) Green roofs against pollution and climate change. A review. Agron. Sustain. Dev. 34 (4): 695-705.
  13. Babcock R W Jr, Lamichhane K M, Cummings M J, and Cheong G H (2014) Condition Assessment Survey of Onsite Sewage Disposal Systems (OSDS) in Hawaii. Wat. Sci. Tech. 70 (6): 1083-1089.
  14. Babcock R W Jr, Senthill A, Lamichhane K, Agsalda J, and Lindbo G D (2015) Onsite aerobic cyclic biological treatment unit provides enhanced nitrogen removal, Wat. Sci. Tech. 71 (12): 1831-1837.
  15. Li Y and Babcock R W Jr, (2015) Modeling Hydrologic Performance of a Pilot Green Roof with HYDRUS-2D, J. Environ. Eng. ASCE 141 (11): 04015036-1-9.
  16. Babcock R W Jr, Wellbrock A, Slenders P, and Radway J (2015) Improving mass transfer in an inclined tubular photobioreactor, J. Appl. Phycol. DOI 10.1007/s10811-015-0763-6.
  17. Xu-Sadri H, Babcock R W Jr, Lamichhane K (2015) Analysis and comparison of the bacterial community in membrane bioreactors and other treatment systems, Int. J. Wat. Wastewater Trt. 2(1): doi
  18. Babcock R W Jr, Wellbrock A, Slenders P, and Radway J (2016) Improving mass transfer in an inclined tubular photobioreactor, J. Appl. Phycol. 28 (4): 2195-2203
  19. Postacchini L, Lamichhane KM, Furukawa D, Babcock R W Jr, Ciarapica FE, Cooney MJ (2016) Life cycle analysis of primary clarifier effluent treatment, Wat. Sci. Tech. 73(10): doi: 10.2166/wst2016.087
  20. Li Y and Babcock R W Jr (2016) A simplified model for modular green roof hydrologic analyses and design, Water 8(8): 343.
  21. Lamichhane KM, Lewis K, Rong K, Babcock R W Jr, Cooney MJ (2017) Treatment of high strength acidic wastewater using passive pH control, J Wat. Process Eng., doi: 10.1016/j.jwpe.2017.06.014
  22. Babcock R W Jr, Harada B K, Lamichhane KM and Tsubota K T (2017) Adsorption of 1,2,3-Trichloropropane (TCP) to meet an MCL of 5 ppt. Environ. Pollution. doi: 10.1016/j.envpol.2017.09.085










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