Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


School of Civil, Mining and Environmental Engineering


In most wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs), sewage sludge is treated by anaerobic digestion to convert the biodegradable organic content into biogas, which is a sustainable energy resource. Due to the increasing pressure on wastewater treatment infrastructure caused by ongoing urbanization and population growth, it is necessary to increase the treatment capacity of an existing WWTP meet the increasing wastewater inflow. Recuperative thickening is one of the approaches which can decouple sludge retention time (SRT) from hydraulic retention time (HRT). This project aims to study the effect of recuperative thickening on the anaerobic digestion performance, trace organic contaminants (TrOCs) removal, biosolids reduction and microbial community structure shift.

This project consists of four major studies.



Unless otherwise indicated, the views expressed in this thesis are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the University of Wollongong.