Long Nghiem

Professor Long Nghiem


  • Deputy Director of the GeoQuest Research Strength
  • Leader of the Strategic Water Infrastructure Laboratory
  • Leader of the Engineering-GeoQuest group
  • Head of Postgraduate Study – School of Civil Mining Environmental Engineering





Professor Long Nghiem’s current work focuses on the development of a membrane-based platform for resource recovery from wastewater and small-scale renewable-energy-driven seawater desalination technologies for remote coastal communities. His specific research interests include:

  • Membrane separation (including pressure driven processes, forward osmosis, membrane distillation, membrane electrolysis, facilitated transport membrane)
  • Membrane bioreactors
  • Membrane fabrication (including electrospinning, solvent casting, and phase inversion)
  • Removal of trace organic contaminants 
  • Water quality and treatment (including water recycling and seawater desalination)
  • Biosolids management
  • Anaerobic digestion of wastewater sludge and organic wastes



Investigators | Nghiem L.D., Price W., Perez P., Stuetz R., Bustamante H., Sudhir M.
Project | Analytics to predict anaerobic co-digestion & downstream process performance (2015-2018). Supported by the ARC (LP150100304); Sydney Water; and DC Water. Total funding | $870K

Investigators | Nghiem L.D., Hai I. F., Price W.Yamamoto K., Elimelech M.
Project | Novel high retention membrane bioreactors for sustainable water reuse: Process performance and optimization Novel high retention membrane bioreactors for sustainable water reuse: Process performance and optimization (2014-2016). Supported by the ARC (DP140103864). Total funding | $285K

Investigators | Nghiem L.D., and Elimelech M. 
Project | Optimising nanofiltration and reverse osmosis filtration processes for water recycling: effects of fouling and chemical cleaning on trace contaminant removal (2009-2011). Supported by the ARC (DP0985389). Total funding | $195K

Investigators | Nghiem L.D., Khan S., Drewes J. 
Project | Assessment and optimisation of N-nitrosamine rejection by reverse osmosis for planned potable water recycling applications (2010-2013). Supported by the ARC (LP0990705); Veolia Water; and SeqWater. Total funding | $333K

Investigators | Indraratna B., Nghiem L.D.,, Glamore W., Golab A.,, Reddi L. 
Project | Investigation of chemical clogging in a permeable reactive barrier installed for remediating groundwater from acid sulfate soils (2010-2012). Supported by the ARC (DP1094383). Total funding | $310K

Investigators | Nghiem L.D., Hai I. F., Wypych P., Price W.
Project | Biosolids Volume Reduction and Conveyance (2013-2015). Supported by Trility.Total funding | $570K.

Investigators | Nghiem L.D. 
Project | Co-digestion of wastewater sludge with glycerol for biogas production (2014). Supported by Sydney Water. Total funding | $100K

Investigators | Nghiem L.D., Price W., Chivas A., Gray S., Duke M. 
Project | Extraction of water and minerals from coal seam gas water for beneficial uses (2012-2014). Supported by NCDEA. Total funding | $450K

Investigators | Nghiem L.D., Price W., Hai F.I., Xie M., He T. 
Project | A novel carbon neutral desalination process based on forward osmosis and membrane distillation (2014). Supported by the Department of Industry: Australia-China Group Research Mission. Total funding | $24K

Investigators | Nghiem L.D., Hai F.I., Horner R. 
Project | Assessment, Modelling, and Optimisation of Membrane Bioreactors for Wastewater Treatment from Pressure Sewer (2013-2014). Supported by Shoalhaven Water. Total funding | $30K.


Professor Long Nghiem has published over 170 peer reviewed journal articles. His research has been cited over 3000 times (h-index = 30). His top ten most significant publications are listed below:

Nghiem, L.D., Manassa, P, Fitzgerald, S.K., Dawson, M. (2014) Oxidation Reduction Potential as a Parameter to Regulate Micro-Oxygen Injection into Anaerobic Digester for Reducing Hydrogen Sulphide Concentration in Biogas. Bioresource Technology, 173: p. 443-44.  

Xie M., Nghiem L.D., Price W.E., and Elimelech M., (2013) A Forward Osmosis Membrane Distillation Hybrid Process for Direct Sewer Mining: System Performance and Limitations. Environmental Science & Technology, 47(23): p. 13486-13493. (This work and a subsequent study (Environ. Sci. Technol. Lett. 2014, 10.1021/ez400189z) were featured in the American Chemical Society - Chemical Engineering News www.cen-online.org and several other news outlets).

Fujioka, T., Khan, S.J., McDonald, J.A., Henderson, R.K., Poussade, Y., Drewes, J.E., and Nghiem, L.D., Effects of membrane fouling on N-nitrosamine rejection by nanofiltration and reverse osmosis membranes. Journal of Membrane Science, 2013. 427: p. 311-319.  

Xie, M., Nghiem, L.D., Price, W.E., and Elimelech, M., (2012) Comparison of the removal of hydrophobic trace organic contaminants by forward osmosis and reverse osmosis. Water Research 46(8): p. 2683-2692.

Tadkaew, N., Hai, F.I., McDonald, J.A., Khan, S.J., Nghiem, L.D., Removal of trace organics by MBR treatment: the role of molecular properties. Water Research (2011) 45(8), p. 2439-2451.  

Alturki, A.A., Tadkaew, N., Sivakumar, M., McDonald, A.J., Khan, J.S., Price, W.E., and Nghiem, L.D., “Combining MBR and NF/RO membrane filtration for the removal of trace organics in indirect potable water reuse applications”. Journal of Membrane Science, 2010. 365 (1-2), p. 206-215.  

Nghiem, L.D., Hawkes, S. “Effects of membrane fouling on the nanofiltration of pharmaceutically active compounds (PhACs): Mechanisms and role of membrane pore size”. Separation Purification Technology, 2007. 57 (1): p. 176-184. [IF = 3.1; 116]

Nghiem, L.D., Mornane, P., Potter, I.D., Perera, J.M., Cattrall, R.W., Kolev, S.D. “Extraction and transport of metal ions and small organic compounds using polymer inclusion membranes (PIMs)”. Journal of Membrane Science, 2006. 281(1-2): p. 7-41. 9.

Nghiem, L.D., Schäfer, A.I., Elimelech, M. “Pharmaceutical Retention Mechanisms by Nanofiltration Membranes”, Environmental Science & Technology (2005) 39, 7698-7705.

Nghiem, L.D., Schäfer, A.I., Elimelech, M. “Removal of Natural Hormones by Nanofiltration Membranes: Measurement, Modeling, and Mechanisms”, Environmental Science & Technology (2004) 38, 1888-1896.

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  • 2005 Ph.D. Environmental Engineering, University of Wollongong; Thesis advisors: Prof Andrea Schäffer (currently at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany) and Prof Manachem Elimelech (Yale University, USA).
  • 2010 Master of Edu Higher Education, University of Wollongong; High Distinction (Average grade > 85%).
  • 2005 Grad. Cert. in Business Business Administration, University of Wollongong.
  • 2002 B.E. Environmental Eng., University of New South Wales; 1st Class Honours.


Prof Long Nghiem has supervised to completion 15 PhD and 6 Master of Philosophy Student Projects. He currently supervises 6 PhD students and 2 postdoctoral research fellows.


  • 2015 Vice Chancellor Highly Commended Research Supervision Award
  • 2012 Best Oral Presentation Award at the Challenges in Environmental Science and Engineering Conference (CESE-2012) in Melbourne, Australia
  • 2012 Excellence in Reviewing Award from Desalination
  • 2011 Best Oral Presentation Award at the Challenges in Environmental Science and Engineering Conference (CESE-2011) in Tainan, Taiwan
  • 2010 Vice Chancellor Excellence in Research Award for Emerging Researcher
  • 2009 Vice Chancellor Outstanding Contribution to Teaching and Learning (OCTAL) Faculty Early Career Academic Award
  • 2006 Best Engineering PhD Thesis Award, Faculty of Engineering, University of Wollongong


Email: longn@uow.edu.au
Web: uow.edu.au/~longn
Phone: +61 2 4221 4590

Last reviewed: 10 July, 2015