Sanitary engineering

Sanitary engineering is the application of scientific or mathematical principles with to the field of sanitation, especially in regards to its effect on public health.

The term "sanitary engineering" is sometimes viewed as an obsolete term for environmental engineering. It is, however, more limited in its scope and is not concerned with environmental factors that do not have an immediate and clearly understood effect on public health. Areas outside the purview of sanitary engineering include traffic management, concerns about noise pollution or light pollution, aesthetic concerns such as landscaping, traffic management, and environmental conservation as it pertains to plants and animals.

Although sometimes considered synonymous with sanitary science, the phrase "sanitary engineering" refers specifically to an applied science in which engineering principles are utilized rather than just studied or improved.

Skills within this field are usually employed for the primary goal of disease prevention within human beings by assuring a supply of healthy drinking water, removing garbage from inhabited areas, and so on.

Compared to (for example) electrical engineering or mechanical engineering which are concerned primarily with closed systems, sanitary engineering is a very interdisciplinary field which may involve such elements as hydraulics, constructive modelling, information technology, project design, microbiology, pathology and the many divisions within environmental science and environmental technology. In some cases, considerations that fall within the field of social sciences must be factored in as well.

Although sanitary engineering may be most associated with the design of sewers, sewage treatment and waste water treatment facilities, recycling centers, public landfills and other things which are constructed, the term applies equally to (for example) a plan of action to reverse the effects of water pollution or soil contamination in a specific area.

anitary engineer

While the phrase sanitary engineer properly refers to a highly-trained professional in the field of sanitary engineering, this same phrase is often used as a humorous euphemism for waste collector, a field of work that requires considerably less specialized education.


The term "sanitary engineering" appears in the names of many municipal departments throughout the English speaking world. The purview of these departments vary.

Some are involved with a specific are of concern such as waste collection or the maintenance of wastewater facilities and storm water drainage systems within a district.

Others cover a broader scope of activities that might include the two just listed as well as such maintenance of the public water supply, collection of residential yard waste Program, disposal of hazardous waste, recycling strategies and even community programs where individuals or businesses "adopt" an area and either maintain it themselves or donate funds for doing so.


* [ The Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition. 2001-05.]
* [ Cuyahoga County Sanitary Engineering Division]
* [ Delft University of Technology]
* [ Greene County Sanitary Engineering Department]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • sanitary engineering — n. the branch of civil engineering having to do with sewage disposal, water supply, etc …   English World dictionary

  • sanitary engineering — noun : a branch of civil engineering concerned primarily with the maintenance of environmental conditions (as pure water supply, waste disposal, insect control, nuisance abatement) conducive to public health * * * sanitary engineer. a branch of… …   Useful english dictionary

  • sanitary engineering — sanitary engineer. a branch of civil engineering dealing with matters affecting public health, as water supply or sewage disposal. [1865 70] * * * …   Universalium

  • sanitary engineering — branch of civil engineering that deals with maintenance and development of water supply and the sewage system as well as additional public health services …   English contemporary dictionary

  • sanitary engineering — Смотри Сантехника …   Энциклопедический словарь по металлургии

  • sanitary engineer — noun : an engineer whose training or occupation is in sanitary engineering * * * sanitary engineer noun • • • Main Entry: ↑sanitary …   Useful english dictionary

  • Sanitary engineer — A sanitary engineer may be either:*a highly trained professional in the field of sanitary engineering *a humorous euphemism for a waste collector, a field of work that requires less specialized education …   Wikipedia

  • Sanitary sewer overflow — (SSO) is a condition whereby untreated sewage is discharged into the environment prior to reaching treatment facilities thereby escaping wastewater treatment. When caused by rainfall it is also known as wet weather overflow. It is primarily… …   Wikipedia

  • Engineering News-Record — (widely known as ENR) is a weekly magazine that provides news, analysis, data and opinion for the construction industry worldwide.It has been published since 1874.It is owned by The McGraw Hill Companies.The magazine s subscribers include… …   Wikipedia

  • Sanitary sewer — A sanitary sewer (also called, especially in the UK, a foul sewer) is a type of underground carriage system for transporting sewage from houses or industry to treatment or disposal. In some areas, sanitary sewers are separate sewer systems… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.