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Publication Title | Government/Municipal Melton Recycled Water Treatment Plant

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Melton Recycled Water Treatment Plant

The wastewater treatment facility in the shire of Melton in Melbourne is Australia’s rst to install a microturbine with a combined heat and power (CHP) system, which helps transform sewage water into carbon-neutral recycled water, electricity, and heat.

Electricity generated by the onsite Capstone CR200 MicroTurbine®, which is fueled by sewage digester methane gas, provides power for the recycled water facility. In addition, thermal heat produced by

the microturbine is captured and used by the digester to further improve its ef ciency. Together, these two technologies comprise

the cogeneration system that helps make the wastewater treatment plant energy ef cient.

The township of Melton is one of Australia’s fastest growing municipalities, with a population expected to double in the next

20 years as the boundaries of Melbourne expand. With Melbourne’s reservoirs dropping to their lowest water levels in a decade, recycled water plays a key role in the government’s strategy to reduce overall water consumption. The region’s water supply from lakes and reservoirs is only at 30 percent of capacity, meaning recycled water is vital to sustain the local community’s needs.

The wastewater treatment facility, operated by Western Water, currently provides recycled water and sewage services to 145,000 people throughout Melton’s outer regions. With rapid regional population growth expected, plant executives knew they needed a strategy to manage the future volume of waste in an eco-friendly way.

The result was a greenhouse reduction strategy to address how Western Water will cope with accelerated population growth and, at the same time, limit the company’s overall carbon footprint among its

At Western Water’s wastewater treatment plant in Melton, Victoria, a CR200 Microturbine burns biogas from the anaerobic digester to produce 1,700MWh of electricity each year. The electricity offsets the plant’s overall power consumption by an estimated 60 percent.

At a glance


Shire of Melton, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia


July 2010


Methane biogas from an anaerobic digester


• Capstone CR200 Microturbine fueled by waste methane gas from the wastewater treatment plant.

• Capstone Heat Recovery Module installed on the CR200 to capture exhaust heat.

• 3 activated carbon lters that remove hydrogen sul de, siloxanes, and moisture from biogas.

• Condensate traps and a chiller removes moisture from biogas.


• CR200 generates 1,700MW-hour (MWh) of electricity each year.

• Capstone Heat Recovery Module paired with a supplementary burner creates approximately 276kW of heat energy and delivers 2.3 million kW-hour (kWh) of thermal energy.

• Waste heat energy is reused to maintain the digester’s 35°C (95°F) temperature.

• The 200kW of electricity delivered offsets the facility’s utility power consumption by about 60%.

• The ef ciency of the biogas-fueled CHP system can be as high as 90%, compared to 25–35% if the biogas is burned in

a stand-alone boiler.

• Western Water has reduced its greenhouse gas emissions.

Image | Government/Municipal Melton Recycled Water Treatment Plant

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