Iron and steel is the largest UK manufacturing industry in terms of energy demand and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. CO2 emission from blast furnace gas (BFG) combustion causes ~50% of these emissions. The steel industry has explored alternative routes to BFG valorisation; however, N2/CO/CO2 selective separation and gas upgrading via commercial processes, such as absorption, adsorption or membranes, are hampered by high capital and/or operating costs as well low efficiency of heat/energy recovery.
In this project, the PhD candidate will focus to study the integration and environmental sustainability of gas-solid reactor integrated within the steel plant to study for the first time new high temperature route for the conversion of BFG into H2 or other added value chemicals via CCUS.
The PhD will cooperate with the team currently involved in the BREIN-STORM project (Boosting Reduction of Energy Intensity in cleaN STeelworks platfORM). The key objective of this project is the development of a new process integrating calcium looping (CaL) and chemical looping combustion (CLC) with the aim of reducing the energy demand, carbon footprint and other life cycle environmental impacts as well as costs in the steel sector. This recent EPSRC project includes the University of Cambridge, University of Leeds and it is made in partnership with British Steel, Tata Steel and the Instituto National del Carbon (CSIC, Spanish Research Council).
Applicants are invited for a PhD Studentship under the supervision of Dr. Vincenzo Spallina in the School of Chemical Engineering and Analytical Science of the University of Manchester. This is an industrially-sponsored PhD project and therefore the PhD candidate will work under the supervision of British Steel and will develop part of the project in their premises. The aim of this project will be devoted to carry out to assess the techno-economic and environmental performance of the considered technology by integrating the major products (H2, CO2, electricity) to produce valuable chemicals. The project combines numerical modelling, detailed flowsheet analysis and process optimisation.
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