A reliable water supply and a successful energy transition are two necessary conditions for a sustainable future. Yet we know little about how the switch to intermittent renewables (wind, solar) for our energy supply will affect the operation of our water infrastructure. The time for planning for this is now: unpreparedness in the face of energy supply fluctuations has wide-ranging economic impacts, as demonstrated by the current energy crisis.
Who are we looking for?
If you are passionate about drought resilience, the energy transition, or both, we would love to hear from you. This fully-funded PhD studentship is a unique opportunity to tackle both in the same project. It is ideal if you are a motivated applicant with a strong engineering or science background, and who is keen to develop a range of advanced analytical and transferable skills that are highly sought after both in industry and academia.
Academic qualifications: A good honours MEng / MSc degree with 2:1 or above in a science or engineering field, or equivalent qualification.
What will you do as a PhD student?
You will be part of a team including internal and external collaborators, both from academia and industry, and working on developing a new suite of fast water-energy models to quantify the impacts of a decarbonised nationwide power grid on water resource systems. This will support the planning of water resource infrastructure. In particular, as a PhD student you will have the opportunity of taking the lead in integrating these tools with an existing strategic water resource model including all the major water utilities in England and Wales. This will enable you to quantify how integrating renewable energy sources into the power grid will affect water resource systems: the cost of the energy they use, their carbon footprint, etc. After that, you will be able to identify and propose ways to modify the operation of the water system to adapt to a changing climate and an evolving power grid.
This project has the potential to deliver new insights and high-profile outcomes to support the adaptation of our water infrastructure, as well as efforts to decarbonise our energy system.
For informal enquiries, please contact Dr Charles Rougé (firstname.lastname@example.org) directly. Please note this project is only funded for home students (UK nationals or permanent residents).