Farrukh Ahmad

Farrukh Ahmad


Dr. Farrukh Ahmad holds undergraduate degrees in Chemistry and Chemical Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin, and a PhD in Environmental Engineering from Rice University.  He is a licensed Professional Chemical and Environmental Engineer in the US, and has previously taught environmental engineering and wastewater treatment courses at the University of Houston and Rice University. 

Prior to joining Masdar Institute, Dr. Ahmad had a 12-year career in applied research, environmental consulting, and management consulting, working for a variety of clients including US federal and state government agencies, Fortune 500 petrochemical firms, and independent businesses.  He served as a Principal Investigator on US Department of Defense research grants, where he led multi-disciplinary and multi-institutional projects to address environmental contamination and cleanup problems in the US.  Before pursuing graduate studies, Dr. Ahmad worked as a Senior Management Consultant at Booz|Allen|Hamilton on the Clinton Administration’s military base cleanup, closure, and realignment effort.

Dr. Ahmad’s current research interests include sustainable processes for wastewater treatment and resource recovery, contaminant characterization and fate in the environment, and environmental risk assessment.


Courses Taught at Masdar Institute

  • FDN462:  Chemistry and Separation Science
  • WEN501:  Contaminants in the Environment: Fate and Transport
  • WEN508:  Applied Environmental Chemistry & Biotechnology
  • WEN603:  Groundwater Hydrology
  • WEN612:  Remediation Engineering
  • WEN618:  Advanced Topics in Applied Environmental Chemistry

Advisor to current Masdar Institute students

  • Qammer Zaib (PhD, Primary Advisor)
  • Rashed AlGaoud (PhD, Co-Advisor)
  • Yohanna Fseha (MSc, Primary Advisor)

Advisor to former Masdar Institute students:

  • Ali H. Farhat, MSc, 2011 (PhD candidate, Univ. of Queensland, Australia)
  • Mays N. Atiyeh, MSc, 2011 (Ingersoll-Rand, UAE)
  • Nour Mezher, MSc, 2011 (World Wildlife Fund [WWF], UAE)
  • Oluwajinmi D. Aina, MSc, 2012 (PhD candidate, Univ. of Toronto, Canada)
  • Wan Abdul Matiin, MSc, 2012 (Govt. research, Malaysia)
  • Qingqian Ning, MSc, 2013 (Engineering firm, People’s Republic of China)
  • Jubilee Adeoye, MSc, 2014 (PhD student, University of Michigan)
  • Yamrot M. Amha, MSc, 2014 (PhD student, Univ. of Southern California)




Dr. Ahmad’s research interests include:

• Sustainable resource recovery (i.e., recovery of water, energy, and minerals) from waste streams.
• Elucidation of contaminant transformation pathways, including development of new analytical methodologies.
• Health-based environmental risk assessment of new and reused products, and risk-based cleanup.

Dr. Ahmad’s research interests include:

  • Salt and water balance during seawater agriculture of halophytes
  • Safe and sustainable water reuse in Abu Dhabi:
    • Pathogen detection and quantitative microbial risk assessment (QMRA) in water reuse for agriculture.
    • Characterization and treatment of pharmaceutical micropollutants in treated municipal wastewater.
  • Nanomaterial-based electrodes for smart electrochromic windows.

For more detailed information on the research activities of the Ahmad group please visit the website of the Bio-Energy & Environmental Lab (www.b2el.com).


Invited Book Chapters

  • Ahmad, F., J. B. Hughes, and G. N. Bennett.  “Biodegradation of Hazardous Materials by Clostridia”, In:  Handbook on Clostridia, P. Durre (Ed.), Taylor & Francis/CRC Press, Boca Raton, 2005.
  • Ahmad, F. and J. B. Hughes.  “Anaerobic Transformation of TNT by Clostridium”, In:  Biodegradation of Nitroaromatic Compounds and Explosives, J. C. Spain, J. B. Hughes, and H. J. Knackmuss (Eds.), Lewis Publishers, Boca Raton, 2000.


  • Ahmad, F.,   and Q. Zaib.  “Photo-Regenerable Filters Useful for the Removal of Organic Compounds”, US Patent Application No. US 20150218013 A1, in review, 2015.

 Selected Peer-Reviewed Journal Papers

  • Amha, Y., R. Kumaraswamy, and F. Ahmad, “A probabilistic QMRA of Salmonella in direct agricultural reuse of treated wastewater”, Water Science & Technology, Vol. 8, pp. 1203-1211, 2015 (DOI: 10.2166/wst.2015.093).
  • Kumaraswamy, R., Y. Amha, M. Z. Anwar, A. Henschel, J. Rodriguez, and F. Ahmad, “Molecular analysis for screening human bacterial pathogens in municipal wastewater treatment and reuse”, Environmental Science & Technology, Vol. 48, pp. 11610-11619, 2014 (DOI: 10.1021/es502546t).
  • Zaib, Q., O.D. Aina, and F. Ahmad. “Using multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWNTs) for oilfield produced water treatment to environmentally acceptable end points”, Environmental Science: Processes & Impacts, Vol. 16, pp., 2039-2047, 2014 (DOI: 10.1039/C4EM00201F).
  • Mieseler, M., M. N. Atiyeh, H. Hernandez, and F. Ahmad, “Direct enrichment of perchlorate reducing microbial community for efficient electroactive perchlorate reduction in biocathodes”, J. Industrial Microbiology and Biotechnology, pp. 1-7, August 2013 (DOI: 10.1007/s10295-013-1318-y).
  • Zaib, Q., B. Mansoor, and F. Ahmad. “Photo-regenerable multi-walled carbon nanotube membranes for the removal of pharmaceuticals from water”, Environmental Science: Processes & Impacts, Vol. 15, No. 8, pp. 1582-1589, 2013 (DOI: 10.1039/C3EM00150D).
  • Mezher, N., W.E. Rathburn, H. Wang, and F. Ahmad. “Chemical Composition and Screening-Level Environmental Contamination Risk of Bio-Derived Synthetic Paraffinic Kerosene (Bio-SPK) Jet Fuels”, Energy & Fuels, Vol. 27, No. 7, pp. 3830-3837, 2013 (DOI: 10.1021/ef400648j).
  • Ahmad F., M.N. Atiyeh, B. Pereira, G.N. Stephanopoulos. “A review of cellulosic microbial fuel cells: Performance and challenges”, Biomass and Bioenergy, Vol. 56 (September), pp. 179-188, 2013 (DOI: 10.1016/j.biombioe.2013.04.006).
  • Farhat, A., F. Ahmad, N. Hilal, and H. Arafat. “Boron removal in new generation reverse osmosis (RO) membranes using two-pass RO without pH adjustment”, Desalination, Vol. 310, 1 Feb, pp. 50-59, 2013 (DOI: 10.1016/j.desal.2012.10.003).
  • Aina, O.D., and F. Ahmad. “Carcinogenic health risk from trihalomethanes during reuse of reclaimed water in coastal cities of the Arabian Gulf”, J. Water Reuse and Desalination, Vol. 3, No. 2, pp. 175-184, 2013 (DOI: 10.2166/wrd.2013.062).
  • Farhat, A., F. Ahmad, and H. Arafat. “Analytical techniques for boron quantification supporting desalination processes: A Review”, Desalination, Vol. 310, 1 Feb, pp. 9-17, 2013 (DOI: 10.1016/j.desal.2011.12.020).
  • Farhat, A., A. Dooley, and F. Ahmad. "Nitrite oxidation within IC-ESI-MS/MS”, J. Mass Spectrometry, Vol. 46, Issues 7, pp. 720-724, 2011 (DOI: 10.1002/jms.1949).
  • Ahmad, F., D. T. Adamson, and S. K. Farhat. "Treatment of an explosive plume in groundwater using an organic mulch biowall”, Remediation Journal, Vol. 20, Issue 1, pp. 21-40, Winter 2009.
  • Ahmad, F., T. M. McGuire, R. S. Lee, and E. Becvar. "Considerations for the design of organic mulch biowalls”,   Remediation Journal, Vol. 18, Issue 1, pp. 59-72, Winter 2007.
  • Ahmad, F., S. P. Schnitker, and C. J. Newell. "Remediation of RDX- and HMX-contaminated groundwater using organic mulch permeable reactive barriers”, J. Contaminant Hydrology, Vol. 90, Issues 1-2, pp. 1-20, 2007.
  • McHugh, T. E., J. A. Connor, and F. Ahmad.  "Discussion of evaluation of the Johnson and Ettinger model for prediction of indoor air quality”, Ground Water Monitoring & Remediation, Vol. 24, pp. 139-140, 2004.
  • McHugh, T. E., J. A. Connor, and F. Ahmad.  "An empirical analysis of the groundwater-to-indoor-air exposure pathway: The role of background concentrations in indoor air”, Environmental Forensics, Vol. 5, pp. 33-44, March 2004.
  • Ahmad, F. and J. B. Hughes.  "Reactivity of partially reduced arylhydroxylamine and nitrosoarene metabolites of 2,4,6-trinitrotoluene (TNT) toward biomass and humic acids”, Environmental Science and Technology, Vol. 36, No. 20, pp4370-4381, October 2002.