PhD scholarship: Sewer inflow and infiltration modelling

University of Queensland

Brisbane QLD, Australia 🇦🇺


Enrolment statusNew students
Student typeDomestic students, International students
Level of studyHigher Degree by Research
Study areaEngineering and Computing
HDR funding typeLiving stipend scholarship, Tuition Scholarship
Scholarship value$28,597 per annum (2021 rate), indexed annually
Scholarship duration3.5 years with the possibility of 1 extension in line with UQ and RTP Scholarship Policy
Opening date19 July 2021
Closing date9 August 2021


Supervisor – Professor Zhiguo Yuan

Sewer systems are among the most critical infrastructure assets for modern urban societies. Urban sewer networks collect and transport domestic and industrial wastewaters to wastewater treatment plants for pollutant removal prior to reuse or environmental discharge, thus protecting both public and environmental health.

One of the most serious issues faced by the water utilities is sewer overflow, which compromises the very purpose of sewer systems, and causes financial and reputational losses to water utilities.

Wet weather overflows are caused by rain-derived inflow and infiltration. Sewer overflow can be reduced by operational optimisation via real-time sewer flow control, making use of the spare storage capacity available in sewer pipes, pumping stations and/or purpose-built storage tanks. The effective application of this strategy requires on-line prediction of sewer inflow and infiltration.

Led by Prof Zhiguo Yuan AM, an ARC Australian Laureate Fellow, the ACWEB sewer research team is undertaking research to develop models to predict sewer inflow and infiltration based on rainfall data and other environmental factors.

An opportunity exists for an outstanding PhD candidate to develop novel methodologies and methods for the detection, quantification and prediction of inflow and infiltration in a sewerage system. The PhD candidate will be involved in the long-term monitoring of sewage flow and key water quality parameters; and will be responsible for the development of mathematical models capable of predicting sewer inflow and infiltration rates. Ample opportunities exist for the student to work with water utilities. The candidate will gain not only extensive training in modelling but also practical experience in sewer management.

Australian Centre for Water and Environmental Biotechnology

The Australian Centre for Water and Environmental Biotechnology (ACWEB) (previously known as Advanced Water Management Centre (AWMC)) is an internationally renowned centre of excellence in innovative water technology and management. We deliver six interlinked programs, including next generation urban water technologies, integrated urban water management, sewer management, nexus of urban water, health and environment, resource efficient agri-industry and environmental biotechnology.

The centre has strong collaborative linkages with industry and an outstanding academic publication record, publishing on average more than 100 papers a year in high quality journals including the most prestigious multidisciplinary journals including Nature and Science, and top discipline journals such as Water Research and Environmental Science and Technology.


To be eligible, you must meet the entry requirements for a higher degree by research.

This scholarship is open to Australian citizens, permanent residents and International students who are able to be in Australia at the time of commencement. With current border restrictions to Australia in place international offshore applicants should consider a commencement of July 2022.