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Water system design for Wadjemup Conservation Centre expansion on Rottnest Island

Lewis, Aled (2016) Water system design for Wadjemup Conservation Centre expansion on Rottnest Island. Honours thesis, Murdoch University.

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Continuing with the development of Rottnest Island’s infrastructure, the existing nursery is under examination for its expansion. Taking on the goals of the Rottnest Island Authority, the aim of the expansion will be to have the buildings off the grid for water and electricity as well as providing accommodation for researchers, workspace for the island's horticulturalists and volunteers, as well as being an educational building for the island's visitors focusing on environmental issues.

This project tackles the water aspect of the development. This was conducted through measuring the current water use and extrapolating this data to find the projected use at the future site. From this a review of options was conducted to find what could be used at the site to ensure water availability and treatment. The considered options have been split into 3 categories: input, which compared desalination and combination of rainwater and desalination; On-site use, which compared the use of composting toilets and rainwater flushed toilets and also the inclusion of a greywater system; Effluent treatment models, which compared existing models and assessed their appropriateness for the Rottnest system. The models reviewed are Findhorn’s “Living machine”, Currumbin’s textile filters, Capo Di Monte’s membrane bioreactor and Council House 2’s ultra-filtration system.

The 48 possible combinations were condensed down to 14 systems due to constraints present with certain components. These final 14 options were compared against each other in a MCA table weighted with concerns from stakeholders on the criteria. This concluded in the decision of having a system comprising of a combined rainwater harvesting and desalination water source as the input, reclaimed water-flushed toilet system with the Currumbin model textile filter as the effluent treatment method. Pricing this method gave a 20 year payback period for the system, as the lifespan of the majority of the components was also 20 years, this system provided no financial benefits making this project break-even.

Item Type: Thesis (Honours)
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Engineering and Information Technology
Supervisor(s): Anda, Martin
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