James Smith headshot
JS

James A. Smith

Professor
Unit: School of Engineering and Applied Science
Department: Department of Systems and Information Engineering
Office location and address
Thornton Hall, D215
351 McCormick Rd
Charlottesville, Virginia 22903
Education
B.S. ​Civil Engineering, Virginia Tech, 1983
M.S. Environmental Engineering, Virginia Tech, 1984​
Ph.D. ​Civil Engineering, Princeton University, 1992
Biography

James A. Smith is the Henry L. Kinnier Professor of Environmental Engineering in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Virginia. He received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in Civil Engineering from Virginia Tech in 1983 and 1984, respectively. He received his Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from Princeton University in 1992.

He worked as a research hydrologist with the U.S. Geological Survey from 1985 to 1992. In 1992, he accepted his current position as a faculty member in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department at the University of Virginia.

Mr. Smith has served as the UPS Foundation Visiting Professor of Environmental Engineering at Stanford University (1998-99) and as the William R. Kenan Visiting Professor for Distinguished Teaching at Princeton University (2004-05). At the University of Virginia, he has been the recipient of the Alumni Board of Trustees Teaching Award (1997) and has held the Cavalier’s Distinguished Teaching Chair (2000-02). He was selected to receive the AEESP/McGraw Hill Outstanding Teaching Award in 2002. In 2017, he was selected as a Fulbright Research Fellow and conducted research during Fall 2017 in Limpopo Province, South Africa at the University of Venda.

Mr. Smith is a Fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers and is the founder of PureMadi, a not-for-profit organization working to solve global water and health problems by working at the interface of water, societal, and human health disciplines. He is also a member of the Water and Health in Limpopo (WHIL) program in collaboration with the University of Venda in Thohoyandou, South Africa.

Mr. Smith is the inventor of the MadiDrop, a silver-embedded porous ceramic tablet for purification of household drinking water. He is the co-founder of MadiDrop Public Benefit Company (PBC) based in Charlottesville, VA. MadiDrop PBC is currently producing and selling MadiDrops around the world to improve water quality, human health, and quality of life.

His research interests include sustainable point-of-use water treatment technologies for the developing world and their impact on human health, the disinfection properties of zero-valent nano-silver and nano-copper particles, organic vapor transport in the vadose zone, low-impact development (LID) teachnologies for stormwater runoff, the fate and transport of emerging environmental pollutants, the engineering properties of organoclays, and bacterial transport and chemotaxis in porous media.

EN- CE- Assessment of the Low Impact Development Strategies Used for the Lorton Road Widening Project, Fairfax County, Virginia
Source: Virginia Transportation Research Council
October 01, 2016 – September 30, 2020
EN-CE Formation of Silver and Copper "Nanopatches" in Ceramic Porous Media and Application for Point-of-Use Water Treatment
Source: U.S. NSF - Directorate For Engineering
August 01, 2014 – January 31, 2019
EN-SE Sediment
Source: Virginia Center for Transportation Innovation & Re
August 24, 2015 – June 23, 2017
EN-CE Assessment of the Low Impact Development Strategies Used for the Lorton Road Widening Project, Fairfax Count, Virginia
Source: Virginia Center for Transportation Innovation & Re
May 15, 2015 – September 30, 2016
REU Site: Water, Society and Health
Source: U.S. NSF - Directorate For Engineering
July 01, 2012 – June 30, 2016
EN-CE Assessment of Low Impact Development Strategies Used for the Lorton Road Widening Project, Fairfax County, Virginia
Source: Virginia Center for Transportation Innovation & Re
August 15, 2013 – August 14, 2015
EN-CE The MadiDrop: A Novel Means to Provide a Simple, Safe and Affordable Drinking Water
Source: The National Collegiate Inventors & Innovators All
July 01, 2013 – July 31, 2015
RS-2012 i6 Challenge - Virginia Innovation Partnership (VIP)
Source: U.S. DOC - Economic Development Administration
October 01, 2012 – March 31, 2015
I-Corps: PureMadi - Ceramic Technologies for Global Household Water Purification
Source: U.S. NSF - Directorate For Engineering
January 15, 2013 – September 30, 2013
Agent Based Modeling as a Tool for the Prevention of Early Childhood Diarrhea
Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (Epa)
August 23, 2011 – August 31, 2013
Collaborative Research: Antimicrobial Properties of Silver Nanoparticles
Source: U.S. NSF - Directorate For Engineering
July 01, 2009 – June 30, 2013
Development of a Monitoring and Assessment Plan for Low Impact Development Strategies for the Lorton Road Widening Project, Fairfax County, Virginia
Source: Virginia Center for Transportation Innovation & Re
January 16, 2012 – June 30, 2013
CE 3100: Water for the World
Credits: 3
This course will examine complex issues associated with providing potable water to the world's population. Topics will include the use of surface and ground water as potable water supplies, fundamentals of water chemistry, the engineering principles used to design modern water treatment and distribution systems, and problems associated with providing potable water in developing global communities. Prerequisites: CHEM1610, APMA 2130, CE3210
CE 4990: Civil Engineering Research and Design
Credits: 3
Team-based project course focusing on design or research effort with focus in a CEsub-discipline. Involves the study of an open-ended project, including problem formulation, development of methodology, data collection from physical experiments and/or models, analysis and interpretation, and formulation of conclusions/solutions. Requisites: 4th Year Standing Civil Majors and Assignment by CEE dept.
CE 4995: Civil Engineering Research
Credits: 1–4
Study of a civil engineering problem in depth by each student using library, computer, or laboratory facilities. The project is conducted in close consultation with departmental faculty and involves survey, analysis, or project development. Progress reports and a comprehensive written report are required. May be repeated if necessary. Prerequisite: Contact individual professor for Instructor Permission.
CE 5240: Ground-Water Hydrology and Contaminant Transport
Credits: 3
An introduction to ground-water hydrology and contaminant transport. Topics include Darcy's Law, fluid potential, hydraulic conductivity, the unsaturated zone, the 3-D equation of ground-water flow, well hydraulics and pump tests, including the principle of superposition, the advection-dispersion-reaction equation, pollutant fate and transport processes, and numerical simulation of ground-water. Prerequisites: CE 2210, CE 3200 or equivalent.
CE 6555: Special Topics in Distance Learning
Credits: 3
Special Topics in Distance Learning
CE 6993: Independent Study
Credits: 1–12
Detailed study of graduate course material on an independent basis under the guidance of a faculty member. Master's-level graduate students. Prerequisites: Instructor Permission
CE 6995: Supervised Project Research
Credits: 1–12
Formal record of student commitment to project research under the guidance of a faculty advisor. Registration may be repeated as necessary. Master's-level graduate students. Prerequisites: Instructor Permission
CE 7993: Independent Research in CE
Credits: 1–12
Detailed independent study of graduate course material under the guidance of a faculty member. Doctoral-level graduate students. Prerequisites: Instructor Permission
CE 7995: Supervised Project Research
Credits: 1–12
Formal record of student commitment to project research under the guidance of a faculty advisor. Registration may be repeated as necessary. Doctoral-level graduate student. Prerequisite: Instructor Permission
CE 8001: Graduate Teaching Instruction
Credits: 1–12
For graduate students who will be GTA for a course taught by CE faculty who have granted Instructor Permission for that section. Prerequisites: Instructor Permission
CE 8999: Thesis
Credits: 1–12
Formal record of student commitment to master's thesis research under the guidance of a faculty advisor. Registration may be repeated as necessary. Prerequisites: Instructor Permission
CE 9999: Dissertation
Credits: 1–12
Formal record of student commitment to doctoral research under the guidance of a faculty advisor. Prerequisites: Instructor Permission
  • Fulbright Research Fellow 2017
  • Juror, University of Oklahoma WaTER Prize 2016
  • 7 Society Honoree, 25th Annual Monticello Dinner Series, Morven Farm 2015
  • Edlich-Henderson Innovator of the Year Award 2015
  • Diplomate, American Academy of Water Resources
  • Fellow, American Society of Civil Engineers
  • Rotary International Paul Harris Fellow 2014
  • Elected by Eminence to the American Academy of Environmental Engineers 2009
  • Founder and Chairman of the Board of PureMadi 2012-PRESENT
  • 7 Society Honoree, Monticello Dinner, Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia 2012
  • Recipient of the Rudolph Hering Medal from the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) for the best paper published in an ASCE water journal 2011
  • Jack H. Dillard Best Paper Award, Virginia Transportation Research Council 2004, 2006, AND 2008
  • Civil Engineering Teaching Award 2006
  • William R. Kenan Visiting Associate Professor for Distinguished Teaching, Princeton University 2004-05
  • Association of Environmental Engineering and Science Professors (AEESP) Award for Outstanding Teaching in Environmental Engineering and Science 2002
  • University of Virginia Cavaliers’ Distinguished Teaching Professor 2000-02
  • UPS Foundation Visiting Professor of Environmental Engineering, Stanford University 1998-99
  • University of Virginia Alumni Board of Trustees Teaching Award 1997
  • Lilly Foundation Teaching Fellow 1993
  • U.S. Geological Survey Outstanding Performance Award 1992, 1988, 1986, 2004-05
  • U.S. Geological Survey Special Achievement Award 1992
  • U.S. Geological Survey Excellence Performance Award 1991, 1987
  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Graduate Research Fellowship 1983
Silivhere Tec hnologies (MadiDrop)