Dr. Stephen Duirk

Dr. Stephen Duirk

Title: Associate Professor
Dept/Program: Civil Engineering
Office: Shrank Hall North 162C
Phone: 330-972-7228
Fax: 330-972-6020
Email: duirk@uakron.edu



  • Doctorate in the Philosophy of Environmental Engineering     2003
    University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA
  • Master of Science in Civil Engineering                                 1999
    University of Akron, Akron, OH 
  • Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering                               1996
    Ohio University, Athens, OH


  • University of Akron
    Assistant Professor, Department of Civil Engineering                     August 2009 – present
  • United States Environmental Protection Agency
    Environmental Engineer/Chemist                                                 March 2007 – July 2009
  • Environmental Engineer/Chemist – Federal Postdoc                       October 2003 – March 2007

Research Interests:

Drinking water supplies are often contaminated with chemicals from agricultural, municipal, and industrial sources.  Current drinking water and wastewater infrastructure is not capable of removing these anthropogenic chemicals (i.e., pesticides and pharmaceuticals) because they were simply not designed for that purpose.  Therefore, the fate of these chemicals in both aquatic and engineered systems is largely unknown.  Dr. Duirk’s research is focused on total water infrastructure sustainability.  Specific areas are:

  • Fate of pesticides in aquatic and engineered systems
  • Transformation of pharmaceuticals during drinking water and wastewater treatment
  • Impact of wastewater contaminants on aquatic systems
  • Impact of agricultural runoff on blue-green algae and the formation of algal derived toxins and taste & odor compounds


  • Physical/Chemical Treatment Process 4300:623
  • Water Reuse 4300:694
  • Advanced Oxidation Processes 4300:628
  • Introduction to Environmental Engineering 4300:321

 Professional Affiliations

  • American Chemical Society
  • American Geophysical Union
  • American Water Works Association

 Honors, Awards, and Professional Service

  • Science and Technology Achievement Award (STAA): 2007 and 2008
  • Water Research Outstanding Reviewer: 2008
  • Registered E.I.T. with the Ohio State Board of Professional Engineers
  • Reviewer for Environmental Science and Technology, Water Research, Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, Journal of Environmental Management , Chemical Engineering Communications, Journal of Hazardous Materials, and Toxicological and Environmental Chemistry as well as for American Chemical Society Book Series. 
  • Nature Reader Review Panel
  • National Science Foundation: Technical Reviewer


  1. Duirk, S.E., DeSetto, L.M., and Davis, G.M., Lindell, C., and Cornelison, C. T. (2010)  Chloramination of Organophosphorus Pesticides found in Drinking Water Sources.  Water Res. 44(3): 761-768
  2. Duirk, S.E., DeSetto, L.M., and Davis, G.M. (2009)  Degradation of Organophosphorus Pesticides in the presence of aqueous chlorine:  Kinetics, Pathways, and Structure-Activity Relationships.  Environ. Sci. and Technol., 43(7): 2335-2340
  3. Duirk, S.E., Tarr, J.C., and Collette, T.W. (2008)  Chlorpyrifos Transformation by Aqueous Chlorine in the Presence of Bromide and Natural Organic Matter.  J. Agric. Food Chem., 56 (4): 1328-1335
  4. Duirk, S.E. and Valentine, R.L. (2007)  Bromide Oxidation and Formation of Dihaloacetic Acids in Chloraminated Water.  Environ. Sci. Technol., 41(20): 7047-7053
  5. Henderson, W.M., Weber, E.J., Duirk, S.E., Washington, J.W., and Smith, M.A. (2007) Simplified Method to Quantify Fluorinated Chemicals Using a Selective Ion Scan for Perfluoroalkyl Chain Fragments with GC/MS.  J. Chromatogr. B, 846(1-2): 155-161.
  6. Duirk, S.E. and Valentine, R.L. (2006)  Modeling Dichloroacetic Acid Formation from the Reaction of Monochloramine with Natural Organic Matter.  Water Res. 40(14): 2667-2674.
  7. Cherney, D.P., Duirk, S.E., Tarr, J.C., and Collette, T.W. (2006)  Monitoring the Speciation of Aqueous Free Chlorine from pH 1 to 12 with Raman Spectroscopy to Determine the Identity of the Potent Low-pH Oxidant.  Appl. Spectrosc., 60(7): 764-772.
  8. Duirk, S.E. and Collette, T.W. (2006)  Degradation of Chlorpyrifos in Aqueous Chlorine Solutions: Pathways, Kinetics, and Modeling.  Environ. Sci. and Technol., 40(2): 546-551.
  9. Duirk, S.E., Gombert, B., Croue, J.P., and Valentine, R. L. (2005)  Modeling Monochloramine Loss in the Presence of Natural Organic Matter.  Water Research, 39(14): 3418-3431.
  10. Choi, J., Duirk, S.E., and Valentine, R.L. (2002)  Mechanistic studies of N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) formation in chlorinated      drinking water.  J. Environ. Monit. 4(2): 249-252.
  11. Duirk, S.E., Gombert, B., Choi, J., and Valentine, R.L. (2002)  Monochloramine loss in the presence of humic acid.  J. Environ. Monit., 4(1): 85-89.
  12. Miller, C.M., Duirk, S.E., and Gardner, K.H. (2000)  Chromium Leaching from Silicon Foam-Encapsulated Mixed Waste.  Environ. Sci. Technol., 34(3): 455-460.
  13. Duirk, S.E., Butala, W., and Miller, C.M.  Chapter 17 Encapsulation of Nitrate Salt Waste Using Polysiloxane, Emerging Technologies in Hazardous Waste Management 8, Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers, pp. 199-206, 2000.
  14. Bower, K., Duirk, S.E., and Miller, C.M.  Chapter 14 Development of and Enhanced Ozone-Hydrogen Peroxide Advanced Oxidation Process, Emerging Technologies in Hazardous Waste Management 8, Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers, pp. 167-176, 2000.

 Published Reports

  1. Duirk, S.E., Desetto, L.M., and Davis, G.M. (2008)  Fate of High Priority Pesticides During Drinking Water Treatment.  U.S. EPA, Athens, GA. Publication No. EPA/600/R-08/089
  2. Duirk, S.E., Cherney, D.P., Tarr, J.C., and Collette, T.W. (2006)  Determining Active Oxidant Species Reacting with Organophosphate Pesticides in Chlorinated Drinking Water.  U.S. EPA, Athens, GA. Publication No. EPA/600/R-06/103
  3. Duirk, S.E. and Collette, T.W. (2005)  Organophosphate Pesticide Degradation Under Drinking Water Treatment Conditions.  U.S. EPA, Athens, GA. Publication No. EPA/600/R-05/103
  4. Valentine R.L. and Duirk, S.E. (2003)  Mechanisms and Kinetics of Chloramine Loss and By-Product Formation in the Presence of Reactive Drinking Water Distribution System Constituents.  Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Iowa.  Publication No. EPA STAR Report 826-832-01-0