Recycling carbon dioxide to form fuel gives the potential for a carbon neutral fuel cycle – reducing net CO2 emissions and reducing dependence on fossil fuels. Electrolysis using a solid oxide cell has been shown to be an effective way of co-reducing CO2 and H2O to form syngas, the precursor for synthetic fuels. The conditions (temperature and pressure) used in co-electrolysis are not the same as those used to produce fuels from syngas and to date no system has successfully directly produced fuel in a solid oxide electrolyser.
The goal of this project is to produce fuel from CO2 in a solid oxide electrolyser. The project will investigate which electro-fuels hold the most promise and then design and develop a system for producing the chosen fuels. Consideration will be given as to whether a one-pot or two-pot system is optimum and what catalysts are best suited to the reactions. Techno-economic analysis will be carried out to benchmark the technology investigated against existing processes.
Training will be provided on all the experimental equipment used, including high temperature electrolysis test stations, scanning electron microscopy, impedance spectroscopy, gas chromatography and relevant software.
This project covers many aspects of engineering and is in an exciting and rapidly developing field. Clean energy is becoming increasingly important and the employment prospects at the end of the project are excellent.
Lab consumables and materials for rig development e.g. gases, cell materials. Equipment is already available in my laboratory. Consumables will be funded through grants that I have and am currently applying for.
Masters degree in chemical engineering or related subject.
If English is not your first language then you must have International English Language Testing Service (IELTS) average of 6.5 or above with at least 6.0 in each component.