Latest News

Successful CRC Project Round 7

August 05, 2019

Congratulations to Mr Christopher Williams (PI, Arrow Energy) and A/Prof Simon Smart (CI, The University of Queensland) are successfully securing the Cooperative Research Centres Projects (CRC-P) Round 7. This project is the second phase of the collaboration project supported by ARC-EESep. The first phase of the project has great success and the impacts to the oil and gas industry is huge as well as to the society. This great news was announced by the Minister for Industry, Science and Technology, the Hon Karen Andrews MP and the Minister for Resources and Northern Australia, Senator the Hon Matt Canavan on 9th of August 2019.

Astonishing Project between Victoria University & Activated Water Technologies

August 05, 2019

A major announcement has been made by  Parkway Mineral for the collaboration project between Activated Water Technologies (AWT) and Victoria University on aMES technology on brine processing. This project is lead by Prof Mikel Duke and Mr Bahay Ozcakmak, the team comprised of Dr Peter Sanciolo, Dr Xing Yang and Mr Jiean Luo, has delivered remarkable impacts to the industry. The aMES application rationale includes: a) potential to rapidly develop a more capital efficient and sustainable potash production operation compared to conventional development pathways; b) the aMES pathway potentially eliminates the requirement for flotation, process steam, gas pipeline and a freshwater bore field, which collectively represent major costs in the traditional potash production flowsheet; c) potential to recover magnesium salts as a by-product. The team is exploring to extend aMES technology to other projects and in a range of other application. 

Visit to QUT

July 31, 2019

It's our pleasure to visit Prof Graeme Millar from QUT on 1 August 2019. He has showed us his facilities and laboratories. His works are astonishing and the impacts to the zeolite industry are exceptional. He is leading a large team comprising of about 50 students and researchers have achieved outstanding research which beneficial to both academics and industry.

Visit to UQ

July 31, 2019

ARC-EESep has visited UQ research team on 1 August 2019. The team has delivered a magnificent  research works and the impacts of the works has greatly help the industry to save significant number of lost. Their works has help the oil and gas industry to remove water vapour from their products and the results is exceed the expected value. Congratulations to the team lead by UQ and Arrow Energy, Prof Joe da Costa, A/Prof Simon Smart, Mr Christopher Williams, Dr Julius Montuzas, , Ms Charmaine Lamiel and Ms Yue Yuan.

Congratulations to A/Prof Matthew Hill as nominated finalists in 2019 Australian Museum Eureka Prizes

July 30, 2019

A fabulous work by A/Prof Matthew Hill and The Broad Spectrum Respiratory Canister Team has been recognised and nominated as a finalist in the Eureka Prize for Outstanding Science in  safe guarding Australia.This collaborative project with CSIRO, Defence Science and Technology Group and Spectrum Innovation Pty Ltd has led to the development of new respirator canister technology that can protect military personnel from weaponised toxic chemical gases and vapours. This offers a step change from existing technology, which sometimes provides minimal protection, giving soldiers a greater chance to safely complete their mission. Click HERE to read the announcement from Australian Museum.

Energy-efficient desalination worth its salt

July 23, 2019

The Australian has reported a great work delivered by Monash research team led by Prof Xiwang Zhang (Director of the Hub) today. The team has found a new way to remove salt from water in a very economic way. Evaporation of water from a black disc driven by sunlight and the steam is captured in a transparent dome on the top of the system. The new system is more effective than other solar-powered desalination system because it does not require any other energy input. The salt crystal can be collected outside the disc which does not reduce the process efficiency. This work is published in the prestigious journal, Energy & Environmental Science. Click HERE to access to the journal paper.

Imagine Life Without Clean Water

July 23, 2019

A team of researchers led by Prof Xiwang Zhang (Director of the hub) works together with OXFAM to develop a small-scale desalination and water purification system. This compact prototype uses reverse osmosis powered with solar energy to produce clean water. The OMP Water Purification Prototype with solar driven, compact, portable and low cost will be a solution to clean water for the remote areas with lack of adequate and safe water.  Click HERE to read more.

Great Talk by Prof Michael Tsapatsis

June 30, 2019

Great to meet with Prof Michael Tsapatsis from Johns Hopkins University. He has delivered a informative and inspired seminar to the researchers and PhD students today at E7 Lecture Theatre, Engineering Building, Monash University. Prof Tsapatsis shared his  30 years of research experience in studying metal-organic framework (MOF). If you miss the talk, click HERE to listen to Prof Budd online.

Breakthrough Research for Better Water Future

June 23, 2019

The members of the Hub have achieved a world-first breakthrough in establishing an unprecedented new method to filter contaminants from ground water and industry wastewater, to produce safe and clean water in the developing world. Led by Prof Huanting Wang (Deputy Director of the Hub) and Dr Huacheng Zhang in collaboration with Dr Anita Hill (SAC member of the Hub), A/Prof Matthew Hill (CI of the  Hub) and Prof Benny Freeman (IAC member of the hub), the team developed a MOF with precisely tuned pores of size and chemistry to be compatible with the selected anion. Full report can be found in Nature Communication today.

Australia Workshop on Membrane Technologies for Biomedical Applications

June 06, 2019

Australia Workshop on Membrane Technologies for Biomedical Applications was co-organised by ARC-EESep and CSL Behring Australia on 7 June 2019 in Novotel Geelong. Dr Hung Pham (CSL Behring Australia) and Dr Joe Bertolini (CSL Behring Australia), Prof Xiwang Zhang (Director of the Hub), Prof Huanting Wang (Deputy Director of the Hub), Prof Lingxue Kong (Deakin), Prof Wei Duan (Deakin), Dr Ludovic Dumee (Deakin), Mr Andrew Rau (Deakin) and Dr Yoni Sharon (Monash)  have delivered their insights about the membrane technologies for biomedical applications.

Water Research Australia (WaterRA) Visit

June 02, 2019

Karen Rouse and Kathy Northcott from WaterRA visited the hub on 3 June 2019. They join a tour led by Prof Xiwang Zhang, the Director of the Hub, to the Hub's laboratories in Green Chemical Futures building and Chemical Engineering building. Following the laboratories tour, an informative discussion was held between WaterRA and EESep Hub to explore the future collaboration opportunities.

Melbourne Water and South East Water Visit

April 25, 2019

A group of delegates from Melbourne Water and South East Water led by Dr Judy Blackbeard visited the hub on 26 April 2019. Our special guests were invited on a tour to the Hub's laboratories in Green Chemical Futures building and Chemical Engineering building. Following the laboratories tour, an informative discussion was undertaken with the Hub's director, Prof Xiwang Zhang, examining potential collaboration opportunities.

Scientific Seminar / Webinar by Prof Peter Budd

April 15, 2019

Prof Peter Budd from the University of Manchester has shared his research findings and insights in the recent developments in polymers of instrinsic microporosity (PIM) on 16 April 2019 (Tuesday) 11.00 - 12.00 pm at Lecture Theatre S13, Monash University.  Prof Budd is co-inventor of the class of high free volume polyer referred to as PIMs, which has utilised under license from the University of Manchester by 3M. If you miss the talk, click HERE to listen to Prof Budd online.

Industry Seminar / Webinar by Dr Dharma Dharmabalan

March 31, 2019

​An insightful seminar was given by Dr Dharma Dharmabalan from  TasWater has opened the eyes of the audience to the application and challenges of membrane technology in the water industry. Dr Dhamabalan has worked in the water industry in Australia for in excess of 28 years and is currently serving at TasWater as General Manager, System Performance and Major Projects. His talk "Membrane Technology for Drinking Water Treatment in Australia"  on 1 April 2019 (Monday) 11.00 - 12.00 pm at Lecture Theatre S1, Monash University has inspired the young researchers and one of the audience has commented that the hub should invite more industry  experts to Monash. If you miss the talk, click HERE to listen to Dr Dharmabalan online.

Scientific Seminar / Webinar by Prof Robert Field

March 03, 2019

​Another great scientific seminar was delivered by Prof Robert Field from  the University of Oxford.  His talk, titled "Water, Membranes and Water Re-use:  Wither this Triptych?" was attended by more than 40 researchers on 4 Mar 2019 (Monday) 10.30 - 12.00 pm at Lecture Theatre M1, Monash University.  During his talk, he explained the advent of nano-materials change the optimal flux for recycling and re-using water. Furthermore, he also discuss the future modules and future water processes with the audience. If you miss the talk, click HERE to listen to Prof Field online.

Subtantial impacts in the industry - Collaboration project of Prof Mikel Duke (Victoria University) and Bahay Ozcakmak (Activated Water)

February 06, 2019

The collaboration project of Prof Mikel Duke (Victoria University) and Bahay Ozcakmak (Activated Water Technologies, a subsidiary of Consolidated Potash Corp. (CPC)) has significant impacts on the industry of the production high-purity sulphate of potash samples from Karinga Lakes Potash Project (KLPP). A scaled-up aMES™ pilot plant has been developed and it is a critical step in commercialising this technology. In return on spending a further $2M, the company has the right to earn an additional 25% in the project. CPC acknowledges the support provided by the Australian Government through the EESep Hub and recognises their collaborators, the R&D team at Victoria University’s Institute of Sustainable Industries & Liveable Cities, led by Professor Mikel Duke.

2018 Excellence Researcher Awards

January 20, 2019

Congratulations to the winners of 2018 Excellence Researcher Awards! The winners are:

Early Career Researcher Category:

First Prize: Ms Liyuan Zhang (Monash)

Second Prize: Ms Xiaofang Chen (Monash)

Third Prize: Ms Bhuvana Shanbhag (Monash)

Postgraduate Researcher Category:

First Prize: Mr Federico Volpin (UTS)

Second Prize: Mr Meipeng Jian (Monash)

Third Prize: Ms Yue Liu (Monash)

2019 New Year Celebration

January 20, 2019

Following the scientific seminar by Prof Michael Guiver, the hub was celebrating 2019 New Year at Collaboration Lounge, Level 4 New Horizons. Also in the attendance were Prof Michael Guiver (Tianjin University), Prof Mikel Duke (Victoria University), Prof Ana Deletic (University of New South Wales), Prof Lingxue Kong (Deakin University), Dr Zongli Xie (CSIRO), Prof Huanting Wang (Monash University) and Prof Xiwang Zhang (Monash University). As part of the celebration, we announced the winners of 2018 Excellence Awards.

Scientific Seminar / Webinar by Prof Michael Guiver

January 20, 2019

Prof Michael Guiver from Tianjin University presented a thoughtful talk, titled "Research developments in polymeric membranes for CO2 separations at Tianjin University" in our hub scientific seminar/webinar on 21 Jan 2019 (Monday) 2.00 - 3.30 pm at Lecture Theatre S9, Monash University. The seminar / webinar was attended by 60 guests either physically attending the seminar in Monash or through Zoom Conference Meeting. If you miss the talk, click HERE to listen to Prof Guiver online.

Technical Meeting with Kunshan Industrial Technology Research Institute (KSITRI), Kunshan, China

November 28, 2018

Our Hub Director (Prof Xiwang Zhang) and 2 chief investigators (Prof Huang Wang, A/Prof Matthew Hill) are pleased to have the opportunity to present their research outcomes with Kunshan Industrial Technology Research Institute (KSITRI). KSITRI showed great interest in the product and further collaboration will be negotiated in near future.

Visit to Kunshan RNAi Institute (KSRI). Kunshan, China

November 28, 2018

Kunshan RNAi Insitute (KSRI) is an innovative driver for bioscience. It is a non-profitable research Institute jointly found by Kunshan Industrial Research Institute and Tsinghua Science Park.​ The institute focuses on transformation of the bio-medicine research in particularly in application of RNAi technologies and drug discovery. Another role of the institute is to promote the bio-medicine companies in China and initiate the incubator projects and explore the bio-technologies research in the region​.

Technical Visit to PEIRE Membrane, Yixing China

November 27, 2018

PEIRE Membrane, Yixing China is a membrane manufacturing company and their main product is Membrane Biological Reactor (MBR). Our team has visited their manufacturing plant and followed by a discussion with their technical adviser in exploring the potential of collaboration.

Technical Visit to National Engineering Research Centre for Special Separation Membrane, Nanjing, China

November 27, 2018

After the China – Australia Energy-Efficient Separation Workshop, the team  was visiting the National Engineering Research Centre for Special Separation Membrane, Nanjing, China. Special thanks to Prof Zhaoxiang Zhong and his team for their hospitality.

China – Australia Energy-Efficient Separation Workshop

November 26, 2018

The China – Australia Energy-Efficient Separation Workshop was successfully held on 25 - 27 November 2018 in Nanjing, China. This workshop was joint-organised with Jiangsu Industry Technology Research Institute (JITRI)  and about 50 representative from China, Australia and Malaysia and both in academic and industry area have participated in this workshop.  A total of 22 technical presentations have been delivered by the 11 researchers from 6 Australia Universities (Monash, UNSW, UTS, Deakin, Curtin & The University of Sydney), 6 delegates from key industry players (Poten Environmental Group,  Scinor Membrane Technology, Yantai Jinzheng Eco-Technology, Rinland Environment Tech, Shenzhenshi Huawei Green Building Material and Dajiang Environment Corporation), 5 representatives from JITRI Specialised Centres. The objective of this workshop is the discuss about the collaboration between China and Australia in developing the energy-efficient separation technology.

ECR Seminar by Mr Ted Ahn

October 11, 2018

Mr Ted Ahn has presented his topic on NanoIR3 and mIRage: A New Generation of Photothermal Infrared Spectroscopy for a Nanoscale Material Characterization. Infrared (IR) spectroscopy is a powerful analysis technique for the identification of chemical species based on characteristic absorption of infrared light associated with molecular functional groups. However, the spatial resolution of traditional IR spectroscopy is limited to ~5 μm due to the wavelength of infrared light. In addition, traditional absorption or transmittance experiments are not well suited to materials containing a high percentage of water. In order to overcome the spatial resolution issue, a new method of generating an infrared spectrum is developed. The sample is exposed to an infrared laser scanned over the wavelengths of interest and the thermal expansion of the material is measured. Two instruments have been commercialized using either an atomic force microscopy (AFM-IR) or a green laser light (mIRage), to measure the thermal expansion. AFM-IR can simultaneously detect an infrared signal with a high spatial resolution (as small as 10 nm) coupled with surface topographical and force information. The mIRage microscope has a larger maximum resolution (< 1 um) but provides much faster data acquisition and removes the requirement to successfully track the surface with an AFM tip. In this talk, the physical principles and basic operation of the AFM-IR and mIRage will be explained. Examples of polymeric and biological materials will be presented to showcase the capabilities of both instruments.

Scientific & ECR Seminar by Emeritus Prof Joe da Costa

September 12, 2018

We are delighted to have the opportunity to have Emeritus Professor Joe da Costa to share his valuable 27 years of experience in research & teaching. He has inspired the earlier career researchers to be excelled in this challenging field. Furthermore, he trained our ECR the project management skills and persevered when facing bottle neck in their studies and career. The line graphs that he drew on the white board has clearly shown the motivation level of researchers when pursuing their PhD for 3 years periods and the technology maturity versus industry & academic research. An inspiration, fabulous and beneficial talk from Prof Costa and we wish you all the best in your new phase of your life!

Publication in Advanced Materials - Thermoresponsive Amphoteric Metal–Organic Frameworks for Efficient and Reversible Adsorption of Multiple Salts from Water

September 05, 2018

Another great publication by our highly productive CI, Prof Huanting Wang (Deputy Director of the Hub), co-author with Prof Xiwang Zhang (Director of the Hub), George Simon (Hub CI), Ranwen Ou, Huacheng Zhang, Jing Wei, Seungju Kim, Li Wan, Nhi Sa Nguyen, Yaoxin Hu in a prestige scientific journal, Advanced Materials, WileyThe paper titled "Thermoresponsive Amphoteric Metal–Organic Frameworks for Efficient and Reversible Adsorption of Multiple Salts from Water" has reported a thermoresponsive, amphoteric metal–organic framework (MOF) material that can adsorb multiple salts from saline water at room temperature and effectively release the adsorbed salts into water at elevated temperature (e.g., 80 °C). This work provides a novel, effective strategy for synthesizing new‐generation, environmental‐friendly, and responsive salt adsorption materials for efficient water desalination and purification.

Scientific Seminar by Prof Wojciech Kujawski

August 12, 2018

We are glad to have Prof Wojciech Kujawski to give us a lecture on "Physicochemical Properties of Hydrophobized Ceramic Materials (Powders and Membranes)" on 13 August 2018 (Monday) at 10.30 am - 12.00 noon in S11, 16 Rainforest Walk, Clayton Campus, Monash. Prof Kujwaski is a Faculty Member at Faculty of Chemistry, and Head of the Chair of Physical Chemistry and Physical Chemistry of Polymers in Nicolaus Copernicus University, Torun. His has extensive experience with over 30 years of experience in education, research, and cooperation with diverse external companies. His main research interest is focused on the fundamental research of membrane separation processes (e.g. pervaporation, membrane distillation, thermopervaporation, ultra- and nanofiltration), membranes in food processing, ionic liquids for task specific processes, ion-exchange membranes, bio-polymers, fossil and bio-fuels, as well as the modification and functionalization of polymeric and ceramic membranes. Listen online.

ARC-EESep Hub Workshop

July 12, 2018

In celebration of Hub's official launching on 13 July 2018, we gathered our CI, PI and researchers together for a workshop in the afternoon. We are glad to have Professor Long Nghiem (UTS), Dr Stephen Holt (ANSTO), Professor Mikel Duke (Victoria University), Dr Nicholas Low (2D Water) and Dr Simon Smart (UNSW) to give their talks about their experience in the research of energy-efficient separation and what is their roles in University Industry Collaboration (UIC) model. At end of the workshop, the CIs and PIs joined the round table discussion to brainstorm the topics of the activities which will be beneficial to UIC and the expectation outcome from UIC.

Working Lunch on Hub's Official Launching Day

July 12, 2018

We are proud to have Prof Mark Banaszak Holl (Head, Department of Chemical Engineering, Monash), Mr Peter Bury (Chemistry Australia), Ms Katie Greenwood (OXFAM), Ms Pam Kerry (South East Water) and Ms Karen Rouse (Water Research Australia) to present their insightful talks during the working lunch after our hub's official launching ceremony.

A Visit to Hub's Facilities

July 12, 2018

A tour to visit our Hub's facilities has been conducted prior to the hub's official launch on 13 July 2018. Ms Leanne Harvey (Executive General Manager of the Australian Research Council), Professor Ian Smith (Vice-Provost, Research and Research Infrastructure, Monash),  Professor Elizabeth Croft (Dean of the Faculty of Engineering, Monash) and Professor Marc Parlange (Provost and Senior Vice-President, Monash) were joined with Professor Xiwang Zhang (Director, ARC Research Hub for Energy-Efficient Separation) to our laboratories in Green Chemical Futures. Thanks to our volunteer team, Mr Meipeng Jian, Ms Wang Zhao and Mr Xingya Li to demonstrate the research area themes  of the hub to the visitors.

ARC-EESep Hub Official Launch

July 12, 2018

Another great milestone was achieved on 13 July 2018 (Friday) by ARC-EESep. Our hub was officially launched by the Hon Craig Laundy MP (The Minister for Small and Family Business, the Workplace and Deregulation. This wonderful moment was witnessed by Ms Leanne Harvey (Executive General Manager of the Australian Research Council), Professor Ian Smith (Vice-Provost, Research and Research Infrastructure, Monash),  Professor Elizabeth Croft (Dean of the Faculty of Engineering, Monash), Professor Marc Parlange (Provost and Senior Vice-President, Monash) and Professor Xiwang Zhang (Director, ARC Research Hub for Energy-Efficient Separation) together with about 110 guests from the universities and industry companies.

Scientifc Advisory Committee Meeting

July 09, 2018

Our Hub's first Scientific Advisory Committee Meeting was held on 10 July 2018 (Tuesday) 4.00 - 5.30 pm at Green Chemistry Futures, Monash University. The meeting was chaired by Prof Xiwang Zhang and the attendees of the meeting were Prof Benny D. Freeman, Emeritus Prof Tamarapu Sridhar, Prof Huanting Wang and Dr Anita Hill. The discussion was fruitful and the rich experience of the SAC members in research and management has provided us invaluable guidance to achieve greater success.

The 1st Scientific Seminar / Webinar

July 09, 2018

Prof Benny D. Freeman has delivered an insightful talk, titled "Advanced Separation Membranes: Historical Development and Future Trends" in our hub scientific seminar/webinar on 10 July 2018 (Tuesday) 2.00 - 3.30 pm at Lecture Theatre S1, Monash University. The seminar / webinar was attended by 82 guests either physically attending the seminar in Monash or through Zoom Conference Meeting. If you miss the talk, click HERE to listen to Prof Freeman online.

Introducing Our Node Directors

July 04, 2018

Our node directors – Professors Mikel Duke (Victoria), Chuyang Tang (New South Wales), Joe da Costa  (Queensland) and Shaomin Liu (Western Australia) – are an integral part of our organisational structure and our commitment to nurture stakeholder relationships. Each node director manages and coordinates the activities of the Hub nodes in four cities and facilitates engagement with local industries. Professor Duke is focused on the development and implementation of innovative membrane technologies for water, foods and energy applications. His specialisation is in the fundamental development of inorganic materials such as nanotubes, silica, titania, zeolites and polymer composites, as well as in applications of membrane distillation, ceramic membranes and membrane assisted fermentation. Professor da Costa has over 20 years experience in industry, consultancy, academic and government advisory roles in Brazil, England and Australia. He has established an internationally respected program of work, which focuses on pursuing novel technological solutions for the issues facing our contemporary society. Dr Tang’s main research interests include membrane technology, surface and interfacial science, and advanced physical and chemical processes.  He is experienced in membrane characterisation, membrane fouling mitigation, and emerging contaminant removal using reverse osmosis and nanofiltration membranes.  Professor Liu is based at the Western Australia School of Mines: Minerals, Energy and Chemical Engineering at Curtin University. His research centres on membrane systems, membrane catalysis and fuel cells. 

Introducing Our Scientific Advisory Committee

July 03, 2018

An outstanding Scientific Advisory Committee has been established for the ARC-EESep Hub. Tasked with providing advice and guidance on future research and strategic direction, the Committee comprises eight distinguished world-renowned researchers.