Dr Andrea Joana Correia Semiao




+44(0)131 6505792


3.10 Alexander Graham Bell Building

Engineering Discipline: 

  • Civil and Environmental Engineering

Research Institute: 

  • Infrastructure and Environment

Research Theme: 

  • Environmental Engineering
Dr Andrea Joana Correia Semiao
Dr Andrea Joana Correia Semiao


Andrea has a first degree in Chemical Engineering at the Instituto Superior Tecnico, Universidade Tecnica de Lisboa, Portugal, followed by an Industrial Placement at Fujifilm, former Avecia in Grangemouth working on dye purification for inkjet printers using membrane technology.

During her PhD in Environmental Engineering at the University of Edinburgh, she carried out extensive research focused on the removal of organic and inorganic trace contaminants from water (e.g. hormones, pesticides, uranium) using membrane technology. She subsequently participated in the AFFIRM project “Analysis of biofilm mediated fouling of nanofiltration membranes” funded by the European Research Council (ERC) under the EU Framework Programme 7 (project 278530; Total budget: €1.5M) in Ireland as a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow between 2012 and 2013. The work focused in understanding bacterial adhesion and biofilm formation on nanofiltration and reverse osmosis membranes.

Andrea’s current research projects focus on developing new technologies and materials for sustainable desalination, water and wastewater treatment processes with the aim of recovering a high yield of resources such as potable water, bioenergy and chemicals. Her projects involve:

  • Water and wastewater remediation with biochar from waste in collaboration with the Biochar Centre in the School of Geosciences, University of Edinburgh
  • Aquaculture wastewater bioremediation with algae and other living organisms for the recovery of water, biomass and bioenergy in collaboration with Scottish Association for Marine Science and Aquaculture Industries;
  • Desalination, water and wastewater treatment with membrane technology and novel nanomaterials;
  • Molecular level characterisation of dissolved organic matter for improved water treatment in collaboration with the School of Chemistry, the School of Geosciences, University of Edinburgh and Scottish Water.

Andrea’s research results have been published in several journals such as Water Research, Environmental Science and Technology, Advances in Colloid and Interface Science and Journal of Membrane Science.


Academic Qualifications: 

2005 Five-year Diploma degree in Chemical Engineering, Instituto Superior Tecnico, Technical University of Lisbon (equivalent to 1st honours MEng)

2011 PhD in Environmental Engineering at the University of Edinburgh on the study of the adsorption and removal of endocrine disruptors by nanofiltration and reverse osmosis membrane processes.


  • Water Resources 2 (CIVE08021)
  • Water and Wastewater Systems 3 (CIVE09026)
  • Group Design Project (Potable Water Supply) (SCEE11003)

Research Interests: 

  • Water Quality
  • Water and Wastewater Treatment
  • Resource recovery
  • Membrane processes, materials, fouling and cleaning
  • Algae wastewater treatment
  • Microbial adhesion and biofouling
  • Trace contaminant and endocrine disrupting chemicals (organic and inorganic) removal

Further Information: 

  • Postdoctoral Research Fellow (School of Chemical and Bioprocess Engineering) University College Dublin