Prof. Shanqing Zhang
Centre for Clean Environment and Energy
School of Environment and Science
Speech title:Intelligent and In-situ Water Quality Monitoring Systems for Environmental Protection and Agriculture
Reliable intelligent and in-situ water quality monitoring system (WQMS) are playing important roles in environmental protection and agriculture. For this, in this work, we developed a series of systems and in-situ sensors, including a WQMS that employs a wall-jet flow cell embedded with three pairs of temperature, conductivity and turbidity sensors and a U-shaped flow cell with a pair of incorporated pH sensors, a nanostructured TiO2-based photoelectrochemical oxygen demand (PeCOD) sensor, a biofilm-based biological oxygen demand (BOD) sensor  and a series of membrane-based ammonia (NH3) online sensors. The specially configured conductivity and turbidity sensors are fabricated and validated for reliable wastewater sensing applications. A vectored high flow hydrodynamic approach and a dual-sensor concept are proposed and implemented into the WQMS, enabling the self-cleaning and self-diagnostic functionalities to effectively encounter vital sensor failing issues caused by contamination and biofouling, as well as ensuring real-time confidence of sensing responses. The performance of the WQMS has been evaluated over a 3-year trial period at different sewage catchment sites in Australian states of New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, and Western Australia. For the first time, a WQMS is demonstrated to be capable of continuously operating in raw sewage for a prolonged period up to 24 months without maintenance and failure, signifying the high reliability and practicality. The COD, BOD and NH3 sensors could be incorporated into WQMS system, resulting in an intelligent and in-situ WQMS system. The demonstrated capability of the resultant WQMS to reliably acquire real-time water characteristics for the purpose of the environmental protection and food security in agriculture. With the developed self-cleaning and self-diagnostic concepts, online PeCOD, online BOD and online ammonia, the intelligent and in-situ WQMS as a full system can be a powerful tool for monitoring the water quality for water source control, freshwater production, and agriculture applications.
Professor Shanqing Zhang, BSc of Sun Yat-sen University, China, Ph.D. of Griffith University, Australia, was awarded Future Fellow of the Australian Research Council, Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (FRSC), and Fellow of Royal Australia Chemical Institute (FRACI). He is currently the research and development leader in Centre for Clean Environment and Energy, Griffith University, and a full professor in the School of Environment and Science of Griffith University. Dr. Zhang has developed a series of patented technologies for environment and water quality monitoring applications basing on functional materials and artificial intelligence. He focuses on the research and development of intelligent and in-situ monitoring technologies for water quality monitoring for environmental protection, agriculture and aquaculture applications. In recent years, Dr. Zhang has published >280 high-quality papers, including Chem. Rev., JACS, Angew Chem Int. Ed., Nat. Commun., Envrionmental Science & Technology, Energy and Environmental Sciences, Anal Chem. Water Research and Adv. Mater., etc., with a citation of ca. 14,000 and an H-index of 68. He has presided over a number of major Australian national energy and environmental research and industrial projects.