Dr Kiran Tota-Maharaj

  • Phone+44(0)121 204 4296

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

Simulation and Optimisation of Membrane Based-Desalination Processes in Water Engineering;

Development of Wastewater Engineering and Reuse Technologies for Small Island Developing States;

Urban water engineering, transport phenomena of emerging contaminants and microbiological pollutants in urban drainage systems;

Operational and Environmental Variations of Bioelectrochemical systems (BES) for Sustainable Stormwater/Wastewater Treatment Technologies and Resource Recovery;

Low-Carbon Permeable Pavement Systems (PPS) for Stormwater Management within Road Structures and Drainage Effects

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Personal profile


Dr Kiran Tota-Maharaj is a Reader in Civil and Environmental Engineering (Water & Environmental Engineering) at Aston University Birmingham. He is a Chartered Engineer (CEng) and a Member of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE), a Fellow of the Institution of Civil Engineers (FICE), a Fellow of the Institute of Water (FIoW), a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers (M.ASCE), a member of the International Association of Hydro-Environment Engineering and Research (IAHR) and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, UK (FHEA). Dr Tota-Maharaj is a Visiting Professor of Environmental Engineering at the Institute of Advanced Research (IAR) Gandhinagar, Gujarat, India and a Senior Research Fellow in Environmental Engineering and Bioengineering within the Bio & Circular Economy Research Group, Faculty of Engineering and Natural Sciences, Tampere University, Finland. 

Having gained a Bachelors in Mechanical Engineering (accredited by the IMechE for CEng with Further Learning) from the University of the West Indies and an MSc in Environmental Engineering (accredited by the JBM as a technical masters & CIWEM) from Newcastle University, UK, Kiran moved into industry working for some of the largest Caribbean engineering consultancies. This allowed him to gain significant insight and experience across various aspects of Mechanical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Environmental Engineering (including, Water & Wastewater Engineering) from the tendering stages, inception, project designs, construction phases to post-completion of water and wastewater infrastructural projects. Thereafter, Kiran was awarded an industrial funded PhD programme at the University of Edinburgh, and subsequently entered the realm of academia.

Prior to joining Aston University, Kiran was the Head of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of the West of England, Bristol (UWE Bristol), a Senior Lecturer in Water and Environmental Engineering at the University of Greenwich, a Lecturer in Environmental Engineering at Abertay University Dundee and a Lecturer in Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Salford Manchester.

Membership of Professional Bodies

Chartered Engineer (CEng), MIMechE, FICE, M.ASCE, FIoW, MIAHR, FHEA 

Research Interests

  • Wastewater Engineering using Microbial Fuel Cells & bioelectricity production;
  • Feasibility of Bioelectrochemical Systems: Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) and microbial electrolysis cells (MECs);
  • Development of novel photocatalytic treatment processes for the depollution of contaminants and impurities within Urban Cities;
  • Applications of Solar Photocatalytic (Advanced Oxidation Processes) for the degradation of pollutants in water and wastewater;
  • Ultrasonic treatment systems for microbiological control of water systems;
  • Desalination, Forward osmosis and osmotic processes for water and wastewater treatment;
  • Membrane bioreactors (MBR) and combining membrane processes such as Nanofiltration and Ultrafiltration for municipal and wastewater treatment;
  • Renewable Energy synergies within Water & Wastewater Treatment Applications;
  • Sustainable drainage systems (SuDS), Green Infrastructure (permeable pavements, engineered wetlands) combined with ground-source heat pumps (GSHPs) & water-sourced heat pumps (WSHPs);
  • Urban water engineering, transport phenomena of emerging contaminants (microplastics) and microbiological pollutants in urban drainage systems
  • Water distribution networks & water demand modelling
  • 3-D printing of Critical Infrastructure within Water & Wastewater Industries 

PhD Supervision

Modelling of Quadric-Surfaced Sludge Digesters (QSD) within Wastewater Infrastructure using 3-D Printing Techniques 

Forecasting Domestic Water Demands across Caribbean Small Island Developing States (SIDS) 

Modelling variations of water resources demands within urban water distribution systems 



Teaching Activity

Mathematics for Civil Engineering 

Fluid Mechanics 


Research Projects/Collaborations

Media Contributions

Contact Details

Tele: +44(0) 121 204 4296
Email: k.tota-maharaj@aston.ac.uk

Education/Academic qualification

PG Cert, Academic Practice and Higher Education , University of Salford

Award Date: 16 Dec 2011

PhD, University of Edinburgh

Award Date: 10 Dec 2010

MSc, Newcastle University

Award Date: 7 Oct 2005

BSc, University of the West Indies

Award Date: 30 Jul 2004

External positions

Senior Research Fellow , Tampere University of Technology, Tampere Finland

4 Mar 2020 → …

Visiting Professor of Environmental Engineering, Institute of Advanced Research (IAR) Gandhinagar, Gujarat, India.

31 Jul 2019 → …


  • TA Engineering (General). Civil engineering (General)
  • Environmental Engineering
  • TJ Mechanical engineering and machinery
  • Renewable Energies
  • TD Environmental technology. Sanitary engineering
  • Water


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