Interactive map: History of municipal membrane bioreactor installations

Membrane bioreactors have become a global phenomenon in municipal wastewater treatment over recent decades, and the increase in number and scale of MBR plants for municipal wastewater treatment has been exponential. The raw numbers in the list of the largest municipal MBR installations paint a picture of their rise in popularity.

The interactive map below, prepared by Sam Skinner, provides a more visual illustration of the global rise of MBRs. The map presents a brief history of the MBR, indicating the relative size, location and year of installation. It is possible to trace the slow initial increase in numbers that followed pilot-scale testing, largely in Europe and America, proceeded by large-scale adoption in China and the Middle East.

© OpenStreetMap contributors | © CARTO Map

Tip: It is possible to zoom into the map for closer inspection using the ‘plus’ and ‘minus’ buttons, and hovering the mouse over a point of interest will show basic statistics about that installation.

Tip: If you see white dots instead of coloured dots, try viewing the map in a different browser.


This map has been created by Sam Skinner, a PhD Candidate in the Particulate Fluid Processing Centre, Department of Chemical Engineering at The University of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. Sam would like to acknowledge the assistance of Shah Sandhu, Process Engineer, Lower Murray Water, in compiling the list of installations.

Base data for this map has been taken from information available from open sources and comprises data on over 700 of the largest municipal MBR installations. It is not intended to be an exhaustive list of worldwide MBR installations as data for some plants/suppliers are not openly available. The openly available information is accurate to the best of the map creator’s knowledge.

Please note that the base data spreadsheet is confidential and unfortunately it is not possible to share this information with third parties. To find out further information about individual MBR plants, visit our Case studies directory.

Updates to the interactive map

Any updates, corrections or omissions to the interactive map should be sent to the map creator, Sam Skinner, at

You may also wish to consider adding your installation to our case study directory, in which case please contact us at


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