Our research and postgraduate training is directed at finding ways to meet the increasing demand for energy and raw materials whilst protecting the environment. We seek to improve existing technologies and practices by developing novel materials, intensifying production processes and introducing new monitoring and control strategies.
We also work on new methodologies of production such as using energy from renewable resources, carbon capture and storage, and finding new catalysts, chemical routes and materials. We have close links with industry both in terms of working collaboratively on projects and in developing postgraduate programmes that meet the training needs of the sector.
Staff and students are based in the School of Chemical Engineering and Advanced Materials or a relevant University research centre and institute. Their research interests cover: energy systems, sustainability and environment; process intensification and applied catalysis; electrochemical engineering and fuel cells; process analytics and control; process modelling; biomimetic and smart materials, nanoscale materials, nanotoxicology and nanofluidics. Often, MPhil and PhD students work on collaborative projects alongside other more experienced researchers. Project partners can include other universities, research institutions or companies such as British Gas, AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline, Unilever, Nestlé, BASF, Sellafield, BP Chemicals and Shell. A comprehensive research training and professional development programme is provided by the Faculty of Science, Agriculture and Engineering.
Specialist facilities and laboratory equipment includes: upstream reaction and downstream recovery equipment; fermentation monitoring and control equipment; bioreactors and microfluidics, and spectroscopic instrumentation such as NIR. We have part- automated fuel cell testing rigs, pilot scale spinning disk and gasification and electrochemical reactors.
The research and development of novel catalysts and materials for a range of applications is supported by characterisation techniques such as XPS, SEM and XRD which exist within the School.
The modules and research projects available through our MSc and Diploma programmes draw on our research expertise, providing you with a direct link to the latest developments in the sector. Many of our programmes offer flexible part-time study options and modules that can be taken on a one-off basis for career and professional development. This enables scientists and engineers to fit advanced postgraduate training around their current work commitments.