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EPSRC supported PhD with Integrated Study: Data-Driven Design for Sustainable Paper Packaging

School of Chemical Engineering

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Prof P Fryer No more applications being accepted Competition Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

About the Project

The need for recyclable and reusable package solutions has increased significantly in recent years as a measure to accelerate our effort in delivering a sustainable future. To address this societal and environmental challenge, P&G has publicly declared aspiring goals in promoting sustainability such that P&G’s brands have committed to using 100% recyclable or reusable packaging while reducing the use of virgin petroleum plastic by 50% by 2030.


The determined goals on sustainability introduced a great technical challenge that is applicable to all manufacturers: how best to design recyclable packaging and where relevant, how to design a satisfactory functional paper packaging with maximum recyclability. This requires not only a fundamental understanding of the repulpability of the paper packaging (% fiber recovery), but also a quantitative assessment of the paper made from the recovered fibres. It is fundamentally a Formulation Engineering challenge that considers what packaging technologies could be used or should be developed building upon a mechanistic understanding of the interactions between components involved under the relevant processing conditions. Considering the complexities involved in this process, including the functional paper formulation, binding strength between the coating and the paper substrate, change in state of the coating on entering a wet, warm environment under various additional processing conditions (e.g. pH, shear etc.), it is inevitable that a modelling approach, either first principle or empirical, will be deployed, which aligns well with the Industry 4.0 drive. The knowledge formulated will then be used as design principles for the future sustainable paper packaging.


To be eligible for EPSRC funding candidates must be a UK national and have at least a 2(1) in an Engineering or Scientific discipline or a 2(2) plus MSc. Please email your c.v. to [Email Address Removed]. For details on the Engineering Doctorate scheme visit the homepage. Deadline April 30 2021


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