The University of Aberdeen has been awarded over £1million in funding to establish a centre that will train a new generation of researchers to develop technologies that convert organic waste into sustainable materials.
The University is one of only ten universities across the UK to receive a prestigious Leverhulme Doctoral Scholarship Award, which will fund 15 doctoral scholarships across three cohorts.
The multi-disciplinary Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) will equip a new generation of researchers with the skills and knowledge to deliver the sustainable production of chemicals and materials from organic waste. It will also evaluate the environmental and economic impacts of developing such technologies.
Their research will focus on the conversion of unavoidable organic waste into essential chemicals and materials (e.g. fuels, fertilisers, pharmaceuticals, construction materials) via anaerobic digestion followed by separation and chemical conversion of the products.
The interdisciplinary research programme will involve the University’s Schools of Engineering, Business, Biological Sciences, Medicine, Medical Sciences and Nutrition, Natural and Computing Sciences and Social Science.
Examples of Specific projects to benefit from the new funding include:
The PhD students will be provided training on the fundamental engineering, economic and political science required to move towards the use of these renewable feedstocks for the production of chemicals and materials in a sustainable, environmentally friendly and economically competitive way.
Leverhulme Doctoral Scholars will receive maintenance costs at Research Council rates, tuition fees at the rate for UK/EU students and research and training expenses for three years. In 2017-18 the maintenance grant for full-time students was £14,533 per annum. International applicants who can pay the difference between the Home and International Fees would also be welcome to apply.
|Producing chemicals and materials sustainably: Understanding the economic implications and firms decision making||Details|
|Electrochemical conversion of higher alcohols to energy and added value chemicals||Details|
|Novel electrolytes and electrodes for the direct conversion of organic acids and alcohols into electricity using solid oxide fuel cells||Details|
|Study of the Sustainable Transformation of Solid Feedstock into Valuable Chemical Products||Details|
|A risk framework to establish the ecotoxicity and fate of anaerobic digestate in soil||Details|
|Anaerobic digestion of food waste for the production of chemicals||Details|
|Catalytic conversion of biogas to ethylene.||Details|
|Catalytic conversion of syngas to oxygenates for the efficient upgrading of biogas||Details|
|Finding optimum mixing condition in an anaerobic digester using computational fluid dynamics approach for sustainable production of chemicals and materials||Details|
|Heat pump assisted distillation for the energy efficient separation of the liquid phase products from anaerobic digestion||Details|
|Microwave-assisted pre-treatment for the cost-effective anaerobic digestion of lignocellulosic substrates||Details|
|Sustainable Chemical Production from Tandem Catalysis||Details|
|Policies and Politics: an investigation of how anaerobic digestion processes comply with current environmental policies||Details|