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Evaluation of the viability of state of the art technologies for energy retrofitting

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  • Full or part time
    Dr A Ahmed
  • Application Deadline
    Applications accepted all year round
  • Self-Funded PhD Students Only
    Self-Funded PhD Students Only

About This PhD Project

Project Description

Eligibility: UK/EU/International

Award Details: No award (Self-funded)

Duration: Full Time - 3 years 6 months fixed term

Application deadline: This opportunity will only remain open until a suitable candidate is identified- early application is therefore advised. Standard University research application closing dates apply (

Informal enquiries are essential before application; contact Dr. Abdullahi Ahmed to discuss this opportunity.

Congratulations on taking your first steps toward a Research Degree with Coventry’s Faculty of Engineering, Environment and Computing. As an ambitious and innovative University, we’re investing an initial £100m into our new research strategy, ‘Excellence with Impact’ ( Through original approaches from world-leading experts, we’re aiming for our research to make a tangible difference to the way we live. As a research student you are an integral part of Coventry’s lively and diverse research community and contribute to our reputation for excellence. With our exceptional facilities and superb support mechanisms ( you are afforded every opportunity for academic success.

The urgency for Europe to transform into a low-carbon economy to meet climate and energy security targets is undeniable. One of the most cost-effective measures to meet energy reduction targets is to address the energy performance of existing building stock. Also, although state-of-the-art and highly innovative products are available for building retrofitting, there are many market barriers that stop their application by end users. As a result of the building materials market is still strongly dominated by conventional retrofitting solutions which have limited performance improvement potential.

The research team are currently working on an EU funded research project called Retrofitting Solutions and Services for the enhancement of Energy Efficiency in Public Buildings (RESSEEPE) which aims to bring together design and decision making tools, innovative building fabric manufacturers and a programme to demonstrate the improved building performance achievable through the retrofit of existing buildings at building and district level. Within the scope of RESSEEPE project, a set of passive and active state of the art technologies with significant energy building performance improvement potential have been developed and installed within existing public buildings [1].

Coventry University is acting as a testing bed demo-site for innovative and new technologies developed specifically within the project (Phase Change Materials, Vacuum insulated panels, Electrochromic windows, Aerogel mortar and Photovoltaic ventilated façade) [2]. The idea is to monitor the performance of these technologies and evaluate their energy performance at building and urban district level, demonstrating the improvement achieved compared to conventional technologies and their viability in the construction market [3, 4].

This proposal seeks to complement the findings of RESSEEPE project by investigating and testing other innovative materials for energy retrofit, which were not included in the RESSEEPE project, and analyse the benefit of the state-of-the-art technologies comparing them to the conventional ones already in the market. This work proposes to use new tools and methodologies for testing the materials from laboratory testing to full Transient System Modelling and simulation which has not currently been carried out under the RESSEEPE project.

The Centre for Low Impact Buildings is seeking exceptional and motivated scholars who wish to engage with global, policy or industry related research that will demonstrate a measurable sustainable improvement in the performance of the built environment. Our key research themes are: building materials or low carbon technologies including their dynamic performance; new standards of building performance involving owners and occupiers; resilience and adaptation to climate change; or, pervasive data in sensoring and monitoring buildings including human computer interaction. It is our aim to improve the sustainability and performance of the built environment.

Successful applicants will have:

- A minimum of a 2:1 first degree in a relevant discipline/subject area with a minimum 60% mark in the Project element or equivalent with a minimum 60% overall module average, or
- A Masters Degree in a relevant subject area will be considered as an equivalent. The Masters must have been attained with overall marks at merit level (60%). In addition, the dissertation or equivalent element in the Masters must also have been attained with a mark at merit level (60%).
- The potential to engage in innovative research and to complete the PhD within a prescribed period of study
- Language proficiency (IELTS overall minimum score of 7.0 with a minimum of 6.5 in each component).


- Can demonstrate knowledge of heat and mass transfer and fluid dynamics
- Experience or demonstrable understanding of thermal/computational fluids dynamics modelling
- Knowledge/experience of buildings and building systems.

Application Procedure:

Application information can be found in our how to apply section. Before completing the application please contact Dr. Abdullahi Ahmed (cc'ing [email protected] when you do) for an initial informal discussion about the opportunity.


All UK/EU/International students are eligible to apply that meet the academic requirements, the eligibility criteria can be found making an application page:

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