PhD position on Hydrogen from Water Electrolysis

Updated: about 2 months ago
Deadline: 15 Aug 2021

Green hydrogen will likely become a very important ingredient in realizing the energy transition, by storing large amounts of electricity and as a base chemical. In alkaline water electrolysers, hydrogen can be conveniently generated from water and renewable electricity. To aid commercial viability, the energy efficiency at high production rates will have to be increased significantly, to reduce the relative cost of electrolyzers.

A significant energy loss is associated with the hydrogen and oxygen gas that is produced, first in dissolved form and then as bubbles. Presently, there are no validated models that can be used to optimize electrodes and cell configurations with respect to gas evolution. In this project we aim to gain insight into the complex interplay between dissolved gas, bubbles, electrolyte flow, and electrochemical reactions. Depending on the interests and skills of the candidate this can be through experiments and/or simulations. High-speed images, flow measurements, and electrochemical measurements can be analyzed in a variety of different cell configurations, which are either already available or can be developed. Computational fluid dynamics simulations combined with mass transport and electrochemistry, in software like COMSOL, may be used to optimize electrodes and cells.

The research will be supervised by Willem Haverkort and collaboration is foreseen with several other researchers at the Process & Energy department and within the wider e-refinery community at Delft University of Technology. Collaboration with external partners is encouraged. The desired starting date is as soon as possible. 

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