HDR candidates

Current HDR Candidates

Jimmy Hilly

Jimmy Hilly 

The Ministry of Health in both the Solomon Islands and Fiji and the Pacific Regional Office of the World Health Organization acknowledges that air pollution and health is a concern.  There is a knowledge gap in this space hence my study will contribute to bridging this gap.  My research aims to achieve the following.  (1) to measure size fractions of airborne particulates over time and seasons noting unique trends; (2) measure the organics and metals in PM2.5 to determine sources risk assessment; and (3) measure school children’s exposure and understanding household behavior.  My findings will inform governments and interested parties.  

Twitter: @Jimmy_J_Hilly

 Jin Zhu

Jin Zhu 

Unexpected taste and odour (T&O) in drinking water is an emerging issue for the Australian water industry as it undermines customers’ trust in drinking water suppliers. Most water utilities monitor only cyanobacterial and microalgal populations, and measure only geosmin and MIB concentrations in source water, which is likely to overlook the full extent of biogenic T&O challenges in drinking water supply. Moreover, conventional coagulation/flocculation/filtration are often adopted for T&O removal, but T&O treatability is not well understood at operational scale. To ensure a better drinking water system from source to tap, the project intends to (1) identify key T&O producing algae in source water by historical data analysis and (2) determine the treatability of unknown T&O for the proactive management of drinking water. 

LinkedIn: @Jin Zhu linkedin.com/in/jin-zhu-981063223 

Google scholar: @Jin Zhu  https://scholar.google.com.au/citations?user=uREBDiIAAAAJ&hl=en

Thais Nunes Guerrero

Thais Nunes Guerrero

As a by-product in wastewater treatment, sludge requires stabilisation before it can be reused. After stabilisation processes – such as anaerobic or aerobic digestion, composting, thermal or chemical treatment, or a combination of those – sludge is called biosolids. Biosolids are rich in nutrients, organic matter, and water that are essential for soil and plants, and are a valuable resource if applied to land for agriculture, forestry, landscaping, and land rehabilitation. However, biosolids can also produce gaseous emissions that have negative impact to the environment, climate and community if not properly managed. Currently there is a lack of data on gaseous emissions from biosolids when applied to land, which can increase fugitive emissions and potential contamination, and reduce benefits and acceptance. My research aims to understand and improve land application of biosolids by minimising gaseous emission impacts.

Chung Yiin (Johnson) Wong

Chung Yiin (Johnson) Wong 

The Australian water industry is currently focusing on two odorants, namely geosmin and MIB, which emit an earthy-musty smell that leads to customer complaints. These compounds are generally produced by cyanobacteria, and apart from these, microorganisms that live in source water or within water distribution pipes are known to produce other unpleasant odorants that make water smell fishy, septic, marshy, etc. This study focuses on the application of Solid-Phase Micro-Extraction (SPME) Arrow static headspace analysis in source water to detect, identify, and quantify odorants beyond geosmin and MIB through combined chemical-sensory analysis using Flavour Profile Analysis and Threshold Odour Test.

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/johnsonwongunsw

Lisha Liu

Lisha Liu

Biosolids, which were once considered a waste product of Wastewater Treatment Plants, are now being recognized as a valuable resource that can be reused in a sustainable manner. However, to ensure that the community accepts their use, it is important to regulate the malodorous emissions that may emanate from biosolids. Failure to do so can result in public dissatisfaction, nuisance impacts, and complaints from those residing near WWTP sites, transportation routes, and application sites. However, establishing what is considered an acceptable odour quality is a difficult task due to the complexity of determining what is perceived as a nuisance and how odours are measured and communicated. This is where my research comes in, as I aim to (1) review and integrate the standard practices for odour sampling and (2) benchmark the measurement of odours from biosolids according to the US EPA and Australian standards.

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/lisha-liu-5a26ab1ba/

Google scholar: https://scholar.google.com/citations?user=qzkFsVAAAAAJ&hl=en

 Khadija Al Nabhani  

Khadija Al Nabhani

Microplastics in the marine environment have been an emerging concern worldwide in recent years. They are a particular concern because they are carriers of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) including heavy metals, chemicals, and carcinogens. However, airborne microplastics, as small as 1µm, and their potential effects on the environment and humans are less researched, especially in the South Pacific. This is why it is imperative to find the sources of these microplastics and how far they are transported. This was the first study of this type, and it was done through the set up of new equipment in four countries (Australia, Fiji, Tonga, and Vanuatu), to collect and find the amount and types of microplastics that are being deposited in this region.

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/khadija-al-nabhani-572318a5/

Google Scholar: https://scholar.google.com/citations?user=JPDuAsgAAAAJ&hl=en&authuser=1

Twitter: https://twitter.com/DidaNabhani