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Evaluation of net-zero CO2 jet fuel options (EPS2022/40)

   School of Engineering & Physical Sciences

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  Dr Mijndert van der Spek  No more applications being accepted  Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

Aviation accounts for roughly five percent of global CO2 emissions but is a sector where CO2 emissions are hard to abate because of their dispersed nature. There are different alternatives to fossil-based jet fuel, but few are truly net-zero CO2, let alone net-zero greenhouse gas emissions over their entire life cycle. This PhD will focus on the design and comparison of different technology systems to provide jet fuels with completely net-zero CO2 and/or greenhouse gas emissions. This can include hydrocarbon jet fuels made from biomass or from atmospheric CO2, or sustainably produced hydrogen. All these systems may, however, need additional carbon dioxide removal to offset any residual greenhouse gas emissions from the fuel supply chain.

The student will use general system design and analysis tools including technoeconomic assessment, life cycle assessment, technological learning, and uncertainty analysis to evaluate and compare these different options on their technical, environmental and economic performance. The data sourcing may be based on literature review where possible, complemented with original modelling in, e.g., Aspen Plus or similar process modelling software. A solid background in chemical engineering, systems engineering, or environmental engineering is desired. Affinity with modelling, creativity, proactiveness and resilience are demanded. The candidate will join an exciting and ambitious group of researchers working to come up with solutions to make climate targets reality and that strives to deliver top-tier research on a day-to-day basis.

More information on the Research Centre for Carbon Solutions:

How to Apply

1. Important Information before you Apply

When applying through the Heriot-Watt on-line system please ensure you provide the following information:

(a) in ‘Study Option’

You will need to select ‘Edinburgh’ and ‘Postgraduate Research’. ‘Programme’ presents you with a drop-down menu. Choose Chemistry PhD, Physics PhD, Chemical Engineering PhD, Mechanical Engineering PhD, Bio-science & Bio-Engineering PhD or Electrical PhD as appropriate and select September 2022 for study option (this can be updated at a later date if required)

(b) in ‘Research Project Information’

You will be provided with a free text box for details of your research project. Enter Title and Reference number of the project for which you are applying and also enter the potential supervisor’s name.

This information will greatly assist us in tracking your application.

Funding Notes

There are a number of scholarships available which offer funding from between 3 and 3.5 years at an average stipend rate of £15,000 per year.
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