Back to Home Page


top logo

BROAD RESEARCH AREAS OF THE INSTITUTE  

WASTEWATER TREATMENT
  • Water quality analysis and modeling
  • Troubleshooting in full-scale wastewater treatment processes
  • Microbial contribution to Biological nutrient removal in activated sludge systems
  • Elucidation of filamentous bulking and remedial measures
  • Evaluation of constructed wetlands for wastewater and storm-water treatment
  • Microbial population dynamics in anaerobic processes treating wastewater
  • Anammox and Partial Nitrification for cost-effective biological nitrogen removal
NEW AND EMERGING POLLUTANTS
  • The potential of microplastics as carriers for pathogenic and antibiotic-resistant bacteria in water and wastewater systems
  • Personal care and pharmaceutical chemical products including perfluoroalkyl compounds linked to endocrine disruption
  • The Amoeba in wastewater treatment and their link to the transfer of antibiotic resistance in bacteria
  • The removal of antibiotics and their metabolites by microalgae in wastewater treatment
ALGAL BIOTECHNOLOGY
  • Bioprospecting microalgae and cyanobacteria
  • Large scale cultivation
  • Biofuels and high-value products
  • Aquaculture
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
  • Wastewater reuse and Health.
  • The occurrence of emerging pathogens and antibiotic-resistant bacteria in wastewater and surface water.
  • Surface water pollution and health

RESEARCH PROJECTS

1. Micro and Nano Plastics in wastewater (2019-2021)

Collaborators: University of Cyprus, Norwegian Institute for Water Research, Rennes University

Picture1

2. ‘Bridging the water’ Orange Knowledge Institutional Collaboration Project (2019-2021)

The project aims at embedding an action-learning and co-creating approach in the form of living labs for students, innovators of university and municipalities and practical training of staff. Sustainably strengthening the South African Water Education & Training Capacity.

saa

3. Science and Technology Research Partnership for Sustainable Development Project (2016-2021)

SATREPS Project “Production of biofuels using algal biomass” a joint collaboration between South Africa: DUT, eThekwini Municipality, Agricultural Research Council (ARC) and Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) and Japan (Nagoya University and Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology) with financial support of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), JST and DST.

fgr

4. BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) Network University (2016- 2019)

BRICS-NU mission is to establish strong partnerships and scientific links between BRICS member countries, focusing on challenges and opportunities in water resource management and pollution treatment. University International Thematic Groups (ITGs), is a consortium of representatives, from BRICS Countries, engaged in “Water Resources and Pollution Treatment”.

brics

5. Global Water Microbiome(GWMC) initiative. (2014-2021)

Joint project with the University of Oklahoma (USA) and 110  from 23 countries.

http://gwmc.ou.edu/

6. EBPR Microbial Observatory 2017

Lead collaborators: Aalborg University, Denmark

The overall aim is to develop a taxonomic database curated for abundant phylotypes for biological nutrient removal plants and anaerobic digesters.

www

BILATERAL PROJECTS

  • Egypt/ South Africa 2011-2013 – “ Enhanced effect of magnetic nanoparticles for bio-hydrogen production from organic waste via pilot-scale ABR
  • India/South Africa 2011-2014 “Chloroplast genome sequencing of biodiesel producing microalgae strains from extreme climates in India and South Africa
  • Algeria/South Africa 2013-2015 “Determining the suitability of using wastewater as a substrate for algal propagation”
  • China/South Africa 2015-2017 “Anammox Reactor: Design, enrichment and application for treatment of ammonia-rich wastewater”
  • India/Brazil/South Africa (IBSA) 2014-2017 “Evaluation and optimization of biodiesel production from microalgae”
  • Oman/South Africa 2018-2020- “Bioprospecting of microalgae from extreme habitats for novel compounds of commercial interest”

INTERNATIONAL COLLABORATORS

  • Italy CNR Water research institute, – Dr Simona Rosetti
  • Italy Italian National Research Council- Water Research Institute – Prof ValterTandoi
  • University of Aalborg, Denmark – Prof. Per Nielsen
  • Egypt Japan University of Science and Technology – Dr Ahmed Tawfik
  • Columbia University – Dr Karthik Chandran
  • Georgia State University – Dr Manjinder Singh
  • University of Bologna (CIRSA) – Prof. Andrea Contin
  • Korea Research Institute of Bioscience and Biotechnology (KRIBB) – Prof Hee-Sik Kim
  • Chemical & Petrochemical, Chemical & Fertilizer Ministry, Government of India-Dr Rohit Misra
  • Oklahoma University, USA-Prof Jizhong Zhou
  • Nagoya university, Japan- Prof Hideki Kanda
  • Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, Japan-Prof Siaw Onwona Agyeman
  • Indian Institute of Technology (BHU), India – Prof. Yogesh C Sharma
  • Federal university of Piaui, Brazil- Prof Carla VR de Moura
  • Tongji University, China- Prof Jian Hua Li
  • Central University of Jharkhand, India-Dr Bhaskar Singh
  • Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, India-Dr Sanjay Kumar Gupta
  • Technische Universiteit Delft, Netherlands – Dr Luuk Rietveld
  • World Water Academy (WWA), Netherlands – Mrs Agnes Maenhout
  • Federal University of Minas Gerais, Brazil – Prof. Nilo de Oliveira Nascimento
  • Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – Prof. Otto Corrêa Rotunno Filho
  • National Institute of Technology (NIT), Durgapur, India – Prof. Supriya Pal
  • Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kanpur, India –Prof. Vinod Tare 
  • Hohai University, China – Prof. Yiping Li
  • North China University of Water Resources and Electric Power, China – Prof. Shenji Li
  • Tomsk Polytechnic University, Russia – Dr Evgeniya Soldatova
  • Tomsk Polytechnic University, Russia – Dr Natalia Guseva

NATIONAL COLLABORATORS

  • University of Stellenbosch: Water Research Commission- Constructed Wetlands
  • University of Pretoria: Water Research Commission- Constructed Wetlands
  • UKZN- Biochemistry: Algal oil production
  • UKZN- Pollution Research Group: Evaluation of full-scale Membrane Bioreactor
  • CSIR: Algae related projects/Wastewater Reuse
  • CPUT: Wastewater treatment
  • UCT: Algal Biofuels

NATIONAL FUNDING AGENCIES

  • Water Research Commission (1996-current)
  • Technology Innovation Agency (2015-current)
  • TIA Seed funding (4 projects)
  • Department of Science and Technology (2016-current)
  • KZNEDTEA (2019-current)
  • Department of Higher Education and Training (2017-current)
  • Brics networks University lead organization
  • eThekwini Municipality (2010-current)

INTERNATIONAL FUNDING AGENCIES

  • Japan International Cooperation Agency
  • NUFFIC Netherlands
  • BRICS Network University
  • SEI
  • Bill and Melinda Gates