From left to right: James Homiller, Vivek Pulikkal, Sadhana Vangapalli, Mei Sun, Savannah Tilly, Thuy Le, Qin Tian (8/30//2018)




Dr. Mei Sun

Assistant Professor

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

University of North Carolina at Charlotte

Energy Production and Infrastructure Center 3163

9201 University City Blvd | Charlotte, NC 28223

Phone: 704-687-1723 | Fax: 704-687-0957

  • Ph.D., Civil and Environmental Engineering, Carnegie Mellon University, 2012
  • M.S. Civil and Environmental Engineering, Carnegie Mellon University, 2008
  • B.E. Environmental Science and Engineering, Tsinghua University, 2007


Current Postdoctoral researchers

Yuling Han

Yuling got her master’s degree on Environmental Toxicology from Zhejiang University, China. After that, she came to US and joined Auburn University in Civil and Environmental Engineering to start her Ph.D. study.  During her Ph.D. study, she worked on oil spill characterization to understand the environmental behaviors and fate of toxic chemicals and forensic biomarkers in oil spill residues.  She got her Ph.D. degree in 2019 Spring and joined the University of North Carolina at Charlotte working as a postdoc.  Her project is chemical analysis of emerging per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in drinking and groundwater.

She enjoys climbing, traveling, and cooking.





Yen-Ling Liu

Yen-Ling obtained her master’s degree in environmental engineering from National Taiwan University. During her master’s study, she gained more interests in doing research in water treatment processes and decided to pursue a PhD degree in the US. Afterwards, she started her PhD career in the Ohio State University in Civil, Environmental and Geodetic Engineering. For her PhD study, she worked on the fate of cyanotoxins in natural and engineered aquatic systems. Yen-Ling got her PhD degree in 2018 Spring and continued doing research on removing algal toxin from drinking water in the Ohio State University as a postdoctoral researcher. In June 2019, Yen-Ling joined the University of North Carolina at Charlotte as a postdoctoral researcher. Her research is to understand the removal of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) by ion exchange. She enjoys hanging out with her pets (a dog and a cat) after works, as well as cooking and traveling over weekends and holidays.




Current PhD Students

Vivek Pulikkal 

Vivek has a Master’s degree in Environmental Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati and a Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from Cochin University.

After getting his Bachelors, Vivek has worked as a civil engineer in Oman for a year but his interest in Environmental Engineering made him return to India to do his Masters. During his Masters, he worked on the effect of various pretreatments such as electrohydrolysis and thermal treatments on anaerobic digestion. Then he worked as a faculty in Water Institute of SCMS School of Engineering & Technology, India, where he undertook projects for providing decentralized water treatment in rural areas where the groundwater is contaminated with iron. During this time, he also worked on water audits, green audits, and air quality monitoring.

During his first year of Ph.D., he worked on bromide removal from flue gas desulfurization wastewater. Currently, he is working on electrochemical mineralization of perfluoroalkyl substances.

He enjoys running, reading, and exploring new places.


Samonth Das

Samonty has a B.Sc. degree from Khulna University of Engineering and Technology (KUET), Bangladesh in Civil Engineering. As her undergraduate research, she worked on greywater treatment with an economic filter in KUET campus. After her bachelor’s degree, she worked as a faculty member at Z.H. Sikder University of Science and Technology, Bangladesh for one year. She has completed her master’s degree in Environmental Engineering from New Mexico State University. During her master’s she worked on nutrient (nitrogen & phosphorus) recovery from wastewater as struvite. She joined the University of North Carolina at Charlotte in Spring 2019 and working on Bromide removal from drinking water. Her hobbies are dancing and singing.



Current Master’s Students

Kaitlynn Bryan-Scaggs
Kaitlynn moved to Charlotte in 2013 after graduating from high school in Carthage, NC. She graduated from UNC Charlotte in 2018 with a B.S. in Earth and Environmental Science and a B.A. in Chemistry. Kaitlynn worked at an analytical chemistry lab in Charlotte for one year before attending graduate school at UNC Charlotte. Her research targets contaminant removal from stormwater using multiple filtration systems. In her free time, she enjoys yoga, spending time with family and friends, and walking her dog Tucker.










Current Undergraduate Students

Ziona Bates-Norris

Cristine Quach


Previous Group Members

Undergraduate students: Melissa Thai (DPR Associates), Isabel Srivoraphan (POWER Engineers), Savannah Tilly (GHD), Dave Tilley (Meridian Laboratory)

Master’s students: James Homiller (WK Dickson & Co.), Sadhana Vangapalli (Chesterfield County Utilities, VA), Thuy Le (PAVCO)

Visiting scholar: Qin Tian (National Research center for Geoanalysis of China)