Scientist, water, team in the field

Duke University Center for Water, Sanitation, Hygiene and Infectious Disease

The Duke University Center for Water, Sanitation, Hygiene and Infectious Disease (WaSH-AID) is a collaborative translational research team working closely with academic, non-profit and private industry partners around the world to facilitate the development and sustainable deployment of novel technology-based solutions for critical health and environmental challenges.

Our research ranges from the design, engineering, and field testing of onsite waste treatment technologies to the exploration of sensors, diagnostics, and machine learning to detect pre-symptomatic disease at the individual and community level. 

To achieve our mission, we

  • Emphasize cross-disciplinary expertise and partnerships.
  • Work along a continuum from basic and translational science to prototyping, field testing, and commercialization.
  • Embrace a user-centered philosophy in all stages of research and development.
  • Seek to promote equity and justice with inclusive and transformative solutions.
Urban Renewal Project in South Korea


Urban Stormwater: Exploring New Ways to Remove Nutrient Pollution

We are excited to share that researchers at the Center have secured sponsorship from Oldcastle Infrastructure, a CRH Company, to explore technologies to remove nitrogen from urban stormwater. Nutrient pollution is a widespread and challenging problem in urban stormwater management. Stormwater [...]

Recent News

March 22, 2023 | Duke Daily

Sanitation Lab Cleaning World's Water

Brian Hawkins, an associate professor at Duke University, and his team are designing a self-contained toilet that requires no infrastructure, can reclaim water for flushing, washing, and irrigation, and can reuse nutrients removed from the water. Their work has taken on added urgency as the climate [...]

Titles and a white toilet

April 20, 2022 | PBS North Carolina

Video: Why Flush Toilets are Wasteful

“We use drinking water to flush our toilets,” WaSH-AID research scientist Lena Trotochaud told PBS NC's Rossie Izlar. “We really need to conserve that precious resource.”

Toilet paper roll with camera lens

September 24, 2021 | The Guardian

The smart toilet era is here! Are you ready to share your analprint with big tech?

Loo design has barely changed in 150 years - until now. Will people trade their privacy for the chance to find out exactly what is in their waste?