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Application of Solar Thermal Energy to Processes

Project Description: The project deals with the development of a new concept for Solar Heating for Industrial Processes (SHIP) and involves modular and flexible integration of two innovative designs for the Solar Collector (SunDial) and the Thermal Energy Storage. It covers a substantial part of the heating and cooling demand of the process industry at temperatures above 150 ºC and below 5 ºC, respectively, for latitudes where current designs are not able to supply. The developed solar concept will be tested in two industrial sites (steel industry and dairy company) to prove the objective’s target of TRL5. Life Cycle Analysis will be carried out to validate and demonstrate the efficiency of the proposed technologies.

This 3-year PhD project will involve:

  • in-depth understanding of the heating and cooling processes in SPIRE and other industrial sectors
  • establish requirements for SHIP Applications in developing SunDial Technology and Thermal Energy Storage devices
  • identify the key performance indicators of the System
  • investigate integration strategies
  • design a lab rig to meet economic & commercial targets
  • assess environmental sustainability of the new system

You will be working together with a supervisory team that brings together unique expertise in solar energy, thermal storage and environmental sustainability. You will have an opportunity to work with the EU consortium of 17 partners from universities and companies and take part in the multidisciplinary research area at the RCUK - Centre for Sustainable Energy Use in Food Chains at Brunel (www.foodenergy.org.uk).

Training opportunities: Brunel will provide training, technical and academic support. You will have an opportunity to work in a multidisciplinary research area that involves solar energy, thermodynamics and environmental assessment of the processes.  You will develop transferable skills with engaging with different stakeholders and end-user companies.

This PhD scholarship is part of the larger project “Solar energy in industrial processes” and is supported by EU – Horizon 2020.  The scholarship covers annual living expenses of £15,009 and UK/EU tuition fees. Please note that the studentship will be conditional on securing a place as a PhD student.

Application deadline: 28 February, 2020

Interview date: 4 March, 2020

Start date: 1 April, 2020

For more information about this PhD opportunity, feel free to contact Dr. Valentina Stojceska at valentina.stojceska@brunel.ac.uk or Dr. Zahir Dehouche at zahir.dehouche@brunel.ac.uk.



The successful candidate will possess minimum 2:1 Honours degree in Mechanical Engineering, Sustainable Energy or Renewable Energy or equivalent qualification(s). Degree in MPhIl, MEng, MSc or industrial experience in sustainable or renewable energy and knowledge of Comsol Multiphysics modelling would be an advantage.

How to apply

Please email all the documents listed below to cedps-pgr-office@brunel.ac.uk  and valentina.stojceska@brunel.ac.uk or zahir.dehouche@brunel.ac.uk

 by Noon, Friday 28 February 2020 

  • Your up-to-date CV;
  • A one A4 page personal statement comprehensively summarising your skills and experience;
  • Your degree transcripts and/or certificates
  • Evidence of English language skills to IELTS 6.5 (or equivalent), if appropriate;
  • Name and contact details for two academic referees.