Labs Mission & History


The mission of this laboratory is to support research and extension activities within chemical analytical services. The laboratory staff are dedicated to providing precise, accurate, and timely analyses of environmental samples. The laboratory staff are committed to performing this work under strict health and safety protocols, following good laboratory practices.

Provide laboratory analysis capabilities for waste management / utilization and water quality / environmental studies, including analyses of wastes, waste waters, solid waste, solids and plant tissue.
Provide laboratory space and support personnel for laboratory studies in waste management / utilization and water quality / environmental studies, and for student laboratory exercises as part of the Agricultural Waste Management course.


Dr. Frank Humenik
Dr. Frank Humenik

This laboratory was originally established in 1969 by Dr. Frank Humenik to perform wet chemistry analysis of waste and waste water samples and provide laboratory space in support of Dr. Humenik’s research in animal waste treatment and utilization, and related environmental studies. In 1972, another research position was added, and Dr. Mike Overcash filled this position and shared direction of the lab until 1981. In 1974, an extension position in animal waste management was added, and Dr. Jim Barker has filled this position since that time. The lab has supported several extension demonstration / research projects for Dr. Barker.

The lab is currently under the direction of Dr. Jay Cheng -2016, Past supervisors have been Dr. John Classen 2010-2015, Dr. Philip Westerman 1993-2010, Dr. Mac Safley 1993-1981, Dr. Overcash 1980-1975 Dr. Humenik 1969-1975. In 1978, an extension position was added in the area of water conservation and domestic and agricultural industry waste management which Dr. Bob Rubin filled untill 2004 . Dr. Rubin has also received support from this laboratory for his extension activities. Dr. Safley left the Department in 1993. In 1995, Dr. John Classen joined the faculty with specific interest in converting agricultural waste to valuable resources. In 1997, Dr. Jay Cheng joined the faculty with specific interest in agricultural and industrial waste management. Dr. Praveen Kolar joined in 2008 with an interest in animal waste and alternative fuels.

Since 1969, this laboratory has supported the research, extension and teaching activities of the above – mentioned persons working in waste management and utilization. It has also provided laboratory support for research and extension projects to other BAE faculty working in water quality and for other faculty within of the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences and the greater university community.