Desalination wiki



Desalination is an important component of a diversified water supply portfolio for Australia’s major coastal cities. Notwithstanding the importance of these assets, there are currently no data bases or online repositories that provide “best practice desalination” information to plant operators as well reliable information on desalination to the general public.

A national digital membrane library was previously developed, called the Membrane Research Environment or MemRE, and contained more than 1500 references related to desalination and membranes generated in the last 30 years. It also contains a database of membrane materials and a wiki to describe the various properties and characterisation methods available for reverse osmosis membranes.


Develop an online knowledge support tool (wiki) containing information on current desalination plants with links to reference material contained in MemRE and a suite of targeted information modules for operators that draws on current and relevant research outputs.


The wiki framework was developed and incorporates the existing information from the previous MemRE plus a number of additional features:

  • A template for the acquisition of data on the six major municipal desalination plants including an overview of each plant, a process flow diagram, water quality information and a detailed description of each process ie pretreatment systems.
  • A dynamic map of Australia indicating the location of the major desalination plants.
  • Training modules containing information specifically for plant operators, including asset management, membrane autopsy techniques and energy recovery.
  • Provides access to a number of tools developed through NCEDA projects ie MemEOL.

Future Direction

A number of additional pages would increase the value of the resource, including managing specific water quality parameters, developing small scale desalination for remote communities and mobile desalination systems. The wiki could also be updated annually with a summary of plant performance for the six municipal desalination plants, increasing the relevance of the resource.



Total Value: $575,000 (cash and in-kind contributions)

Principal Investigator: Professor Greg Leslie

Title: Development of online knowledge support tool for national desalination plants

Length: 17 months

Personnel: 4 collaborators contributing 1.8 FTE

Related Project: Web-based public interface tool for climate resilient water sources

Further Information

FR1 UNSW Leslie (DML) Summary Poster

Project Summary Poster – desal wiki

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