Xiao Honored as 2023 Emerging Investigator, Presents Keynote at AWWA Conference

December 01, 2023

Feng Frank Xiao portrait
Feng “Frank” Xiao

Feng “Frank” Xiao, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering, was honored by the Association of Environmental Engineering and Science Professors (AEESP) as the 2023 Emerging Investigator lecturer and presented a keynote address at the American Water Works Association’s (AWWA) Water Quality Technology Conference in Dallas last month.

Since 2017, the organizations have selected one distinguished young professor annually for this prestigious recognition. Xiao—among the researchers to warn of the dangers of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), or “forever chemicals”—joined Mizzou last year.

“I am glad to see our research efforts being embraced by peers and industry leaders alike, signaling a solid collaboration between academia and the private sector toward better drinking water quality,” he said.

Xiao’s AWWA presentation, “Tackling PFAS in Water Infrastructure: Strategies for Treatment and Management in Water Systems,” gave an overview of his ongoing work on innovative removal processes. He discussed the primary challenges in removing PFAs from existing water treatment facilities, explored potential solutions and shared insights from his research on thermal treatments for degrading PFAS in waste media.

The AWWA conference is a cornerstone event in the water industry, bringing together professionals and experts from academia and the private sector to address pressing water quality challenges.

AEESP is the largest non-profit academic organization in the environmental field in North America. AWWA is one of the world’s largest water association organizations with numerous members playing a significant role in the global water industry.