The Energy Futures Lab sets up networks to encourage researchers to communicate within and between disciplines and technologies. The details of the networks and their aims are below. If you are interested in joining one of them, either as a researcher at Imperial College London or as someone working in a related industry please contact us on or email the academics listed for the relevant network.

Peopl working in industry may also be interested in the companies we work with and the ways we can work with external bodies.

Our research networks


Imperial research includes investigating whether sugars from plant cell walls can be used to make biofuels such as ethanol to burn in car engines. The policy and social implications are also studied to ensure there are no negative environmental impacts.

Key academics: Dr Raphel Slade, Dr Jem Woods

Carbon capture and storage (CCS)

Imperial has the largest CCS research programme in the UK, which focuses on capturing, transporting and storing carbon in geological formations, as well as legal and regulatory issues, environmental impact analysis and systems research. We also operate and teach on a four storey CCS pilot plant in the heart of London.

Key academics: Professor Martin Blunt, Dr Paul Fennell

Case studies from the network

Electric and hybrid vehicles

Research into low carbon transport is vital for a sustainable future. Our engineers and researchers have particular strengths in battery degradation, battery pack design, turbochargers and engine downsizing.

Key academics: Professor Ricardo Martinez-Botas, Dr Greg Offer

Case studies from the network

Energy business

Imperial's Energy Business Research Laboratory develops theoretical, managerial and policy insight into how environmentally sustainable energy technologies can be economically created, implemented and adopted.

Key academics: Professor Richard Green, Dr Ritsuko Ozaki

Case studies from the network

Energy efficiency

Energy efficiency can drastically reduce the carbon output of energy intensive processes. Imperial research focuses on device efficiency, improved processes, demand-side response and more efficient heat exchange.

Key academic: Dr Christos Markides

Energy policy

The Imperial Centre for Energy Policy and Technology (ICEPT) focuses on the policy behind the science and technology of producing energy, to analyse the impact of energy systems on climate, ecosystems and human health, and to explore the economic, legal and institutional aspects of related energy and environmental policies.

Key academic: Dr Rob Gross

Research network related site

Energy storage

Energy storage is vital for making intermittant renewable power more viable. Our research looks at the integration of different storage devices, the application of energy storage on the grid, and the economic effectiveness of grid-scale storage.

Key academics: Professor Goran Strbac, Professor NIgel Brandon

Energy systems modelling

This network brings together Imperial's multidisciplinary expertise in systems modelling to understand how energy, people and materials flow through different systems - from homes to cities and countries. The development of multi-scale models has applications throughout a range of other technology and policy domains.

Key academics: Professor Nilay Shah, Dr James Keirstead

Fuel cells

Multidisciplinary research includes development of solid oxide, polymer electrolyte and alkaline fuel cells coupled with the analysis of the economic and environmental effects of fuel cell technology.

Key academic: Professor Anthony Kucernak

Green aviation

The emerging demand to reduce the role of aviation on climate change brings together research interests including aircraft design, advanced materials, combustion and policy.

Key academics: Professor Ferri Aliabadi, Professor Paul Robinson

Marine renewable energy

Researchers from departments across Imperial College London address the challenges associated with large scale deployment of marine renewable energy. Mathematical models of ocean behaviour are tested against real results in our high scale wave tanks.

Key academics: Dr Johannes SpinnekenDr Matthew Piggott

Nuclear fission

Research includes increasing the understanding of materials used in nuclear reactors, improving fuel performance and developing better modelling techniques for simulating thermal and fluid flow process in reactors. Other research focuses on the sustainable, safe and secure disposal of nuclear waste.

Key academic: Professor Bill Lee

Nuclear fusion

This network combines Imperial's strengths in plasma physics and engineering to address the technical issues associated with developing a first generation nuclear fusion power plant.

Key academics: Professor Steven RoseProfessor Roger Evans

Oil and gas

Research at Imperial focuses on improved location and production of oil and gas, integrating them with emerging technologies such as carbon capture. We also look at how to cleanly extract hydrocarbons, such as through downwell processing.

Key academics: Professor Velisa Vesovic, Professor Geoff Maitland

Shale gas

Unconventional gas, including shale, could act as a cleaner alternative to coal power generation. Our researchers look at the feasibility of fracking in UK shale, the engineering requirements, the environmental impacts, and the policy and legislative implications of shale gas extraction.

Key academics: Professor Mark Sephton, Dr Lidia Lonergan

Smart networks

Research into developing a smarter electricity supply system includes new ways of controlling, operating and investing in networks, a better understanding of how new technologies affect grid operation and better ways of balancing supply and demand by integrating energy systems, including offshore grids.

Key academics: Professor Goran StrbacProfessor Tim Green


Imperial has the largest UK academic research programme on solar energy conversion, focused primarily on developing new solar energy conversion technologies, such as organic and nano-photovoltaic cells and ways of harnessing sunlight to synthesise chemical fuels.

Key academics: Professor James Durrant, Dr Ned Ekins-Daukes

Case studies from the network


Imperial's Centre for Transport Studies - one of Europe's leading inter-disciplinary transport research and teaching centres - specialises in new transport technologies, operations, whole systems, environmental effects and policy and regulatory issues.

Key academic: Professor John Polak