CENTA2 is a consortium of research intensive Universities and research institutes that are working together to provide excellence in doctoral research training. Cranfield University is proud to be working alongside these partners to create the next generation of scientific leaders in environmental science. The student will be based at the Cranfield University at Shrivenham in Wiltshire https://www.cranfield.ac.uk/About/How-to-find-Cranfield/How-to-find-Shrivenham
The project will apply novel flow control techniques to enhance the turbulent mixing of second-generation biofuels with air, which will improve combustion and reduce emissions. It will investigate the potential of second-generation biofuels as sustainable alternative fuels for aircraft engines and will estimate the dispersal of combustion pollutants from these biofuels in the atmosphere to determine their benefit.
Aircraft combustion emissions account for about 6% of total emissions in the UK. As most aircraft fly in the earth’s stratosphere, the dispersal of combustion emissions are contributing to climate change. This dispersal in the atmosphere is expected to increase severely as the air transport is forecasted to double by 2040. Hence, novel technologies and sustainable fuels are needed to significantly reduce the environmental impact of aircraft. As first-generation biofuels are based on food crops, there is a concern that food prices could rise and shortages might occur. Second-generation biofuels, which are based on non-food crops, have potential to meet the high demands of jet fuel supply sustainably, affordably and in an eco-friendly way (Fig. 1). The project will also realise the potential of second generation biofuels as sustainable alternative fuels by enhancing their turbulent mixing with air, which will improve combustion and reduce emissions. The project will explore the possibilities of direct usage of second-generation biofuels in existing aircraft engines. The objectives are:
1. Enhance the mixing of second-generation biofuels with air through novel flow control methods
2. Evaluate the atomisation properties of second-generation biofuels in comparison with fossil fuels
3. Study the interactions between mixing-enhancement methods and biofuel-atomisation processes
4. Develop a physics-based model for designing and optimising the fuel injectors for future aircraft
5. Estimate the dispersal of combustion pollutants in the earth’s atmosphere, mainly stratosphere
Timeliness: The findings will offer practical adaptations that could be made on existing aircraft now, thus significant impact sooner, rather than only in the next generation of aircraft. Hence, the project must be conducted now as its findings will develop greener aircraft.
Novelty: The project will investigate the true potential of second-generation biofuels as sustainable alternative fuels for aircraft engines. The project will estimate the dispersal of combustion pollutants from these biofuels in the atmosphere to determine their real benefit.
For experimental research, a jet rig and engine test cells at Cranfield will be used. For computational research, a high performance computer at Cranfield will be used. The project will be performed in active collaboration with both Loughborough and Aston Universities.
1. Apply novel flow control techniques to enhance the turbulent mixing of second-generation biofuels with air, which will improve combustion and reduce emissions
2. Use the new knowledge that is gained from measurements to further enhance physics-based models for optimising the geometry of fuel injectors for future aircraft
3. Explore the possibilities of direct usage of second-generation biofuels in existing aero engines for a noticeable reduction in emissions and thus making an impact sooner
4. Estimate the dispersal of combustion pollutants (of second-generation biofuels compared to those of fossil fuels) in the earth’s atmosphere, particularly stratosphere.
For full project description please visit: http://www.centa.org.uk/themes/climate-environmental-sustainability/c2/
• Application deadline – 21st January 2019
• Interviews (to be conducted via Skype) – w/c 11th February 2019
• Selection panel – 21st February 2019
• Universal acceptance date – 20th March 2019
How to apply
To apply for one of the Cranfield University projects you will need to complete our online application form.
1. Please state the name of the project you will to apply for
2. When asked how you intend to fund your postgraduate studies please state that you wish to apply for a NERC CENTA2 studentship.
3. You will also be required to complete and submit the CENTA2 studentship application form and attach it to the application form