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PREDICTOR: Improving the energy performance of closed-loop heating and cooling systems

School of Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering

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Dr M Eftekhari , Dr T Dijkstra No more applications being accepted Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

About the Project

Application details:
Reference number: ABCE19/ME
Start date of studentship: by 1 October 2020
Closing date of advert: 26 April 2020
Interview date: tbc

Primary supervisor: Dr Mahroo Eftekhari
Secondary supervisor: Dr Vanda Dimitriou

Loughborough University
Loughborough University is a top-ten rated university in England for research intensity (REF2014). In choosing Loughborough for your research, you’ll work alongside academics who are leaders in their field. You will benefit from comprehensive support and guidance from our Doctoral College, including tailored careers advice, to help you succeed in your research and future career.

Find out more:

The School of Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering aims to be the world’s leading integrated centre for built environment research and education, attending to the entire lifecycle of both buildings and infrastructure through our research, teaching and enterprise programmes.

In the most recent Research Excellence Framework, the School was ranked first for research environment in Architecture, Built Environment and Planning, with 95% of research rated ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ for its influence on society, the economy and policy. The School boasts world class facilities, with £1.4m recently invested in its 3,000m2 laboratory and one of the fastest High-Performance Computer clusters in the UK.

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Full Project Detail
Buildings and the construction sector are responsible for 36% of global energy consumption and nearly 40% of total direct and indirect CO2 emissions, with approximately 60% of the energy used for heating, hot water and cooling. PREDICTOR will develop a decision support tool – deploying Artificial Neural Network and Cost Benefit Analysis – for predicting timely maintenance intervention in non-domestic buildings to ensure optimum operation and maintenance of closed loop Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) systems, which could save up to 30% of HVAC energy use and reduce overall system lifecycle costs.

The project outcomes will be decision support for design, Building Information Modelling-based tools integrated with Building Management Systems, commissioning/maintenance guidance, interactive training and novel open source system performance software. This project will address and limit climate change in a practical and significant manner.

Entry requirements
Applicants should have, or expect to achieve, at least a 2:1 honours degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject. Applicants having a background in subjects relating to computing or engineering are particularly welcomed. A relevant master’s degree and/or employment experience is an advantage.

Contact details
For information about the project, please contact:

Name: Dr Mahroo Eftekhari
Email address: [Email Address Removed]
Telephone number: +44 (0)1509 222606

For information about the application process, please contact:

Name: Mr Berkeley Young
Email address: [Email Address Removed]
Telephone number: +44 (0)1509 222611

How to apply
Applications should be made online at and must include an outline research proposal:

Under programme name, please select Civil and Building Engineering (Built Environment).

Please quote reference number: ABCE19/ME

Funding Notes

The 3.5-year studentship is intended to start by July 2020. It provides a tax-free stipend of £15,009 a year (2019/20 rates – stipend will rise in line with the level set by the Research Council) for the duration of the studentship plus tuition fees at the UK/EU rate. Due to funding restrictions, this studentship is only open to UK/EU applicants. In order to qualify for a full award, applicants must meet the EPSRC eligibility criteria including the minimum UK residency requirement.

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