Joel Ducoste


  • 919-515-8150
  • Mann Hall 431E

Dr. Ducoste is a Professor in the Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering Department at North Carolina State University. He has over 18 years of modeling experience in a number of environmental and engineering applications.

Dr Ducoste was appointed by the North Carolina House of Representative to serve on the Offshore Energy Exploration Study Committee, which is responsible for advising the General Assembly on the environmental impact of proposed off shore energy options to the State of North Carolina. He also serves as an Associate Editor for American Association of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Journal of Environmental Engineering and is a board member of the North Carolina Fulbright Association (treasurer) and the International Ultraviolet Association (IUVA). Dr Ducoste also serves on the EPA Science Advisory Board (SAB), SAB Drinking Water Committee and was a past member of the augmented Scientific and Technological Achievement Awards committee. Dr Ducoste has served on advisory committees such as the American Water Works Association (AWWA) Particulate committee, AWWA project advisor for research projects funded by AWWA, Water Environment Federation (WEF) Sewer Collection committee, and International Population Balance Model scientific and organizing committees. He is a member of AWWA, International Ultraviolet Association (IUVA), Water Environment Federation (WEF), and Association of Environmental Engineering and Science Professors (AEESP).

Before his appointment at the university, Dr. Ducoste was a senior process engineer at CH2M HILL’s Water Business Group. He continues to participate as a senior consultant with nationally and internationally recognized firms in water and wastewater projects related to the application of CFD for analyzing designs and troubleshooting treatment problems. Dr. Ducoste also has experience in the design and construction of manufacturing processes for Fortune 100 companies.


Ph.D. 1996

Civil and Environmental Engineering

University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

M.Eng 1989

Mechanical Engineering

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

B.S. 1988

Mechanical Engineering

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Research Description

Dr. Ducoste is interested in the operation, design, and optimization of drinking water and wastewater treatment processes. He achieves these goals by incorporating novel experimental techniques and validated numerical models in the analysis of unit processes. He has research experience in the operation and design of chemical mixing, flocculation, sedimentation, and chemical and UV disinfection processes in drinking water treatment. Dr. Ducoste is an expert in modeling water and wastewater treatment process fluid mechanics using Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD). He has developed CFD models for analysis of chemical and UV disinfection reactors, rapid mix chambers, flocculation basins, filtration systems, wastewater activated sludge systems, waste stabilization ponds, secondary clarifiers, and food waste systems. Dr Ducoste is also interested in modeling cellular regulatory and metabolic pathways and interfacing product formation to produce bioreactor models using CFD.


Construction and setup of a bench-scale algal photosynthetic bioreactor with temperature, light, and ph monitoring for kinetic growth tests
Karam, A. L., McMillan, C. C., Lai, Y. C., de los Reyes, F. L., Sederoff, H. W., Grunden, A. M., Ranjithan, R. S., Levis, J. W., & Ducoste, J. J. (2017), Jove-Journal of Visualized Experiments, (124).
A model to describe heat generation and accumulation at municipal solid waste landfills
Hao, Z. S., Sun, M., Ducoste, J., & Barlaz, M. (2017), In Geotechnical frontiers 2017: waste containment, barriers, remediation, and sustainable geoengineering. (Geotechnical Special Publication, 276) (pp. 281-288).
Modeling fats, oil and grease deposit formation and accumulation in sewer collection systems
Yousefelahiyeh, R., Dominic, C. C. S., & Ducoste, J. (2017), Journal of Hydroinformatics, 19(3), 443-455.
Attenuated total reflectance fourier transform infrared spectroscopy for determination of long chain free fatty acid concentration in oily wastewater using the double wavenumber extrapolation technique
Hao, Z. S., Malyala, D., Dean, L., & Ducoste, J. (2017), Talanta, 165, 526-532.
CFD for wastewater treatment: An overview
Samstag, R. W., Ducoste, J. J., Griborio, A., Nopens, I., Batstone, D. J., Wicks, J. D., Saunders, S., Wicklein, E. A., Kenny, G., & Laurent, J. (2016), Water Science and Technology, 74(3), 549-563.
Trends in population and demographics of US environmental engineering students and faculty from 2005 to 2013
Blaney, L., Kandiah, R., Ducoste, J. J., Perlinger, J. A., & Bartelt-Hunt, S. L. (2016), Environmental Engineering Science, 33(8), 578-590.
Structural characteristics and development of the cake layer in a dynamic membrane bioreactor
Xiong, J. L., Fu, D. F., Singh, R. P., & Ducoste, J. J. (2016), Separation and Purification Technology, 167, 88-96.
Good modelling practice in applying computational fluid dynamics for WWTP modelling
Wicklein, E., Batstone, D. J., Ducoste, J., Laurent, J., Griborio, A., Wicks, J., Saunders, S., Samstag, R., Potier, O., & Nopens, I. (2016), Water Science and Technology, 73(5), 969-982.
Quantifying fat, oil, and grease deposit formation kinetics
Iasmin, M., Dean, L. O., & Ducoste, J. J. (2016), Water Research, 88, 786-795.
Clustering and differential alignment algorithm: Identification of early stage regulators in the Arabidopsis thaliana iron deficiency response
Koryachko, A., Matthiadis, A., Muhammad, D., Foret, J., Brady, S. M., Ducoste, J. J., Tuck, J., Long, T. A., & Williams, C. (2015), PLoS One, 10(8).

View all publications via NC State Libraries


Collaborative Research: Modeling the regulatory network of InsP6 signaling in plants.
National Science Foundation (NSF)(8/15/16 - 7/31/18)
Evaluation of Alternative Binder Material to Reduce Sewer Collection system Infrastructure Maintenance and Enhance Sustainability
NCSU Water Resources Research Institute(3/01/16 - 2/28/18)
Quantifying the Grease Interceptor Effluent Fatty Acid concentration and Profile: Impact of Pump out Frequency
Emerson Electric Company(8/01/14 - 5/15/16)
Inducing Aerobic Granulation in Continuous-Flow Reactors using Shear Variability
National Science Foundation (NSF)(8/15/13 - 5/31/18)
EFRI-PSBR:Closing the Loop- Towards a PSBR Design Framework for Self-Sustained Marine Microalgal-Based Fuel Production
National Science Foundation (NSF)(9/01/13 - 8/31/18)
CREATIV Dynamic Regulatory Modeling of the Iron Deficiency Response in Arabidopsis thaliana
National Science Foundation (NSF)(8/15/12 - 7/31/18)
Assessment of Alternative Herbicides for Roots Intrusion Treatment
RootX Corp.(1/01/11 - 12/31/12)
Modeling of Cellulose, Hemicellulose and Lignin-Carbohydrate Complex Formation and Regulation to Understand Plant Cell Wall Structure
US Dept. of Energy (DOE)(9/01/11 - 11/30/17)
Evaluation of Continuous Flow Ultraviolet Light Emitting Diode Reactors
National Science Foundation (NSF)(9/01/09 - 8/31/14)
Regulation and Modeling of Lignin Biosynthesis
National Science Foundation (NSF)(9/15/09 - 9/30/15)