From physical networks of pipelines and power cables to data-driven models of assets and plants, energy infrastructure provides the backbone of our energy systems. These systems are being transformed in response to the Net Zero imperative, geopolitical threats, and extreme weather events driven by our changing climate, creating new challenges for engineers and scientists. Our Energy Infrastructure theme encompasses a wide range of research in this field, a core area of strength for Imperial’s energy community.
Our teams are playing a central role in the design of efficient, affordable and resilient delivery and storage systems for new fuels, energy vectors, and captured greenhouse gases; in the integration of new forms of power generation onto electricity grids and the development of smart grids; and in the protection of critical infrastructure from security threats. Imperial-led innovation is helping to ensure the energy transition can be achieved with minimal disruption and at the lowest possible cost.
Professor Christos Markides - Research Theme Lead, Energy Infrastructure
Professor Christos Markides has an MEng degree in Engineering and PhD in Energy Technologies, both from the University of Cambridge. He currently leads the Clean Energy Processes Laboratory in the Department of Chemical Engineering. His research interests include: recovery, utilisation, conversion and storage of thermal energy for cooling, heating and power; heat and fluid flows in energy systems, urban environments, physiological systems; nuclear energy thermohydraulics and next-generation thermodynamic power systems; and thermal energy storage and large-scale electrical energy storage via thermal processes.
Centre for Process Systems Engineering
Led by Professor Claire Adjiman, the The Sargent Centre for Process Systems Engineering is a multi-institutional research centre comprising researchers from the Department of Chemical Engineering at Imperial College London and University College London. Their focus is on the analysis and design of complex process engineering systems and the development of the tools and techniques required. Their research includes work on supply chains, modelling urban centres, energy systems engineering and environmental systems engineering.
HVDC and Smart Grid
Led by Professor Tim Green, the High Voltage Direct Current and Smart Grids group is based in the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering. The team are developing and testing new technologies for electrical grid applications, with particular attention to renewable energy generation. The team’s lab is a suite of hardware that can be set up to emulate different energy generation and distribution systems, replicating the conditions of a real electrical grid on a laboratory scale.
Electrical Energy Systems Group
Led by Professor Goran Strbac, the Electrical Energy Systems Group is based in the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering. The group’s expertise includes advanced modelling and analysis of operation, planning, security and economics of energy systems. This allows them to work on a wide range of areas including whole-energy system modelling, energy market design, Integration of renewable energy sources, energy planning under uncertainties, distributed energy resources and the security and resilience of future energy infrastructure.
Wireless Power Lab
Led by Professor Paul Mitcheson, the Wireless Power lab is based in the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering. The team is dedicated to research in the areas of inductive power transfer and energy harvesting. Their work focusses on lightweight inductive power transfer systems, biomedical applications of wireless power, coil design, foreign object detection, high frequency inverters and high frequency rectifiers.
Centre for Systems Engineering and Innovation
Led by Professor Jennifer Whyte, the Centre for Systems Engineering and Innovation is based in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. Their research focuses on systems engineering and innovation in complex infrastructure projects, and in design for manufacture and assembly (DfMA) in the delivery supply-chain. It includes work on system integration, systems design and optimisation for DfMA; visualization of complex engineering projects and delivering for value across the infrastructure life-cycle.
Electrochemical Science and Engineering Group
Led by Dr Greg Offer, the Electrochemical Science and Engineering Group is a cross-departmental group with researchers from the departments of Mechanical Engineering, Earth Science and Engineering and Design Engineering. The team have a wide range of areas of expertise including batteries, fuel cells supercapacitors, 3D tomography and imaging, techno-economics and additive manufacturing with a particular interest in their application in electric vehicles.
Clean Energy Processes Laboratory
Led by Dr Christos Markides, the Clean Energy Processes Laboratory is based in the Department of Chemical Engineering. The team’s expertise is in applied thermodynamics, heat and mass transfer processes, as applied to innovative and high-performance components, technologies and systems. The team has a particular interest in energy efficiency in power generation, heat and/or cooling provision, the recovery, utilisation, conversion and storage of thermal (solar and waste) energy, nuclear energy thermohydraulics and large-scale electrical energy storage via thermal processes.
Led by Professor Lidija Zdravkovic, the Geotchnics group is based in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. The group includes experts in the areas of Soil Mechanics and Engineering Geology. Their research focuses on understanding the mechanics, behaviour and properties of soils and soft rocks. Within the energy sector they are interested in various aspects and methods for improving wind-turbine pile design both onshore and offshore.
Minerals, Energy and Environmental Engineering Research Group
Led by Professor Anna Korre, the Minerals, Energy and Environmental Engineering Research Group is based in the Department of Earth Science and Engineering. It is a unique interdisciplinary team that combines world-leading techniques in advanced measurement and multi-scale, multi-physics modelling. They are working to develop engineering solutions to some of the most pressing problems facing mankind: the supply of renewable energy, the sustainable production of metals and earth resources, and mitigating environmental impacts and risks.