The College of Wooster plans to create a zero stormwater discharge campus using rain gardens filled with a nanoengineered absorbent glass. The campus is already home to two rain gardens, built in 2011 as part of a U.S. National Science Foundation control study to determine the glass’ effectiveness. According to the study, the glass, known as Osorb®, reduced stormwater volume by more than 99% and removed high percentages of stormwater pollutants when intermixed with soil. Osorb swells to absorb organic compounds, and researchers are formulating new ways to address an array of contaminants, from hydrocarbons and pharmaceuticals to chlorinated solvents and endocrine disruptors.

While working with glasses for explosives detection, Paul Edmiston developed Osorb at the College of Wooster. He later founded ABSMaterials to commercialize and further develop the Osorb product with support from the National Science Foundation. Read more.