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Current research funding in the Division of Chemical Engineering and Renewable Energy

Division of Chemical Engineering and Renewable Energy

Research Projects

The following are current funded research projects taking place within the research division:

Bottom up structuring of liquids without external fields or molds.
Manufacturing of anisotropic nano and micro- particles.
Molecular Manufacturing of Macroscopic Objects - fellowship Stoyan Smoukov

Principal Investigator: Stoyan SMOUKOV
Funding source: EPSRC Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
Start: 01-09-2018  /  End: 31-08-2023
Amount: £1180624

This interdisciplinary proposal proposes a molecular basis for Manufacturing for the Future,[a1] to grow many types of particles in a nature-inspired way. It offers scalability, near-full utilization of the material, and the ability to carry out transformations at near ambient conditions. Manufacturing in nature spans the scales from intricate ...

Sustainable Processing of Energy Materials from Waste

Principal Investigator: Petra Ágota SZILáGYI
Funding source: EPSRC Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
Start: 01-01-2019  /  End: 31-12-2021
Amount: £32669

Bacterial Biofilm
Bacterial Nanocellulose for Energy Applications

Principal Investigator: Ana JORGE SOBRIDO
Co-investigator(s): Petra Ágota SZILáGYI
Funding source: Newton Fund , (British Council)
Start: 14-04-2020  /  End: 16-10-2021
Amount: £50000

Our project aims to reuse the leftover of the fique natural fiber production (juice) from local producers in Antioquia, where close to 100 farmers of fique fibers sell this raw material at a price of $150 COP/kg for the production of sacks and cord. We will use the fique juice as a culture medium for the Komagataeibacter Medellinensis bacteria for the synthesis of bacterial nanocellulose, which will be further activated for energy storage applications, including lithium-ion batteries and supercapacitors. With this project, we will support local farmers, who will benefit from selling their agricultural waste to biomass companies, providing farmers a new source of income. The proposed collaboration involves Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana (UPB) and Queen Mary University of London (QMUL).

3D printed electrodes for energy conversion and storage technologies
3D printed electrodes for energy conversion and storage technologies

Principal Investigator: Ana JORGE SOBRIDO
Funding source: Royal Society
Start: 01-07-2020  /  End: 30-06-2021
Amount: £17182

Here I propose to use 3D printing to explore new electrode composites consisting of nanostructured graphene / transition metal electrocatalytic species for application in energy storage and conversion technologies. This research will lead to the development of a variety of electroactive composites, with different geometries and microstructures, and high electrocatalytic performance for batteries, fuel cells and water electrolyser systems. This research has the potential to truly transform the field of electrode design and expand the use of 3D printing techniques for the processing of new electrocatalytic architectures.

BP-ICAM fellowship

Principal Investigator: Radomir SLAVCHOV
Funding source: BP International Ltd
Start: 01-06-2020  /  End: 31-05-2021
Amount: £14320

2-Dimensional Materials for Novel Battery Electrodes

Principal Investigator: Patrick CULLEN
Funding source: EPSRC Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
Start: 06-01-2020  /  End: 05-05-2021
Amount: £418627

There is an urgent need for the development and manufacture of advanced batteries for the electrification of vehicles in order to enable long, energy efficient trips on a single, fast charge with minimal loss of capacity and exceptionally high safety standards. Critical to achieving this aim is improving the capability of battery technology. By making new active materials for Li -ion and Na-ion batteries I aim to improve battery capacity, charge time and power.

The National Centre for Nuclear Robotics (NCNR)

Principal Investigator: Kaspar ALTHOEFER
Co-investigator(s): Andrea Cavallaro, Lorenzo JAMONE, Ildar FARKHATDINOV, Miles Hansard and Stefan Poslad
Funding source: EPSRC Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
Start: 02-10-2017  /  End: 30-04-2021
Amount: £1020239

Nuclear facilities require a wide variety of robotics capabilities, engendering a variety of extreme RAI challenges. NCNR brings together a diverse consortium of experts in robotics, AI, sensors, radiation and resilient embedded systems, to address these complex problems. In high gamma environments, human entries are not possible at all. In alpha-contaminated environments, air-fed suited human entries are possible, but engender significant secondary waste (contaminated suits), and reduced worker capability. We have a duty to eliminate the need for humans to enter such hazardous environments wherever technologically possible. Hence, nuclear robots will typically be remote from human controllers, creating significant opportunities for advanced telepresence. However, limited bandwidth and situational awareness demand increased intelligence and autonomous control capabilities on the robot, especially for performing complex manipulations. Shared control, where both human and AI collaboratively control the robot, will be critical because i) safety-critical environments demand a human in the loop, however ii) complex remote actions are too difficult for a human to perform reliably and efficiently.

Conductive ink printed on paper.
All-printed thermoelectric generators

Principal Investigator: Oliver FENWICK
Funding source: Royal Society
Start: 01-10-2017  /  End: 31-03-2021
Amount: £110748

Organic thermoelectric materials are in the early stages of development, and the excitement surrounding them lies in their low cost, solution processability (they can be printed) and their mechanical flexibility. In short, they could revolutionise thermoelectric power generation. In this project, an OTEG will be fabricated on paper by a novel printing process. It is a cheap, scalable process that is much-needed for OTEGs to become reality. Furthermore, this project follows the conviction that a fundamental understanding of OTEG device physics will accelerate the development of improved thermoelectric materials

Understanding the excited states in carbon dots and hybrids for solar fuels production

Principal Investigator:
Funding source: Royal Society
Start: 01-03-2018  /  End: 28-02-2021
Amount: £111000