Evaluating the technical and economic potential of utilising bioenergy in paper and pulp mill

Student: Hao Chen

The production of paper is an energy intensive process that requires both a significant amount of electricity and heat. Bioenergy is considered as an environmentally friendly renewable energy that can generate both heat and electricity. Adapting and integrating bioenergy technologies into paper mill operations has the potential for lower carbon emission, higher efficiency and lower cost than conventional operation that burns fossil fuels. With optimisation modelling, this thesis explores the technical and economic potential of different bioenergy technologies in paper mill.


  • Dr Salvador Acha, Department of Chemical Engineering
  • Professor Christos Markides, Department of Chemical Engineering
  • Dr Niccolo Le Brun, Department of Chemical Engineering
  • Professor Nilay Shah, Department of Chemical Engineering

Assessing the Benefits of Decarbonising Desalination in Cyprus

Student: Kristian Christodoulides

The aim of the study is to identify the benefits of integrating renewable energy sources with desalination plants in the Republic of Cyprus. More specifically, the goal is to prove that the unit price of desalinated water and associated carbon emissions can be reduced. The intention is to motivate potential investors and desalination plant owners to invest in solar and/or wind generation sites as well as generate possible improvements in desalination plant infrastructure.


  • Dr Sheridan Few, Grantham Institute

An analysis of the valorisation of waste plastics to produce fuels and petrochemicals

Student: Nana Bonsu Owusu-Nyantekyi

The heating of waste plastics at high temperatures in the absence of oxygen, known as pyrolysis, has been identified as a tertiary waste valorisation pathway and a potential solution for the increasing waste plastic stream. In 2016, Europe produced 60 million tonnes of plastics and in the same year, 27 million tons of plastics entered the waste streams for recycling (31%), energy recovery (42%) and landfills (27%). Pyrolysis has gained interest for its ability to generate valuable fuels and chemicals from plastics. The aim of this thesis is to demonstrate how the use of these fuels and chemicals can be used to offset the demand for virgin petrochemicals, thereby mitigating GHG emissions.


  • Dr Marcos Millan-Agorio, Department of Chemical Engineering

Offshore Wind Energy: Holistic optimisation of an HVDC transformer platform

Student: Konstantinos Pavlidis

The implementation of HVDC transmission, instead of the traditional AC method, is proposed to take full advantage of the wind energy potential far offshore. Such an undertaking, though, involves the construction of an offshore transformer platform, an unquestionably large structure, exposed to harsh marine conditions. My work focuses on calculating the wind, wave and current loading using analytical theories and empirical coefficients. The optimisation package Dakota will be applied in order to establish a design compromise which minimises the overall cost. The design will be tweaked based on detailed simulations using an existing CFD model and nonlinear wave models.


  • Dr Marios Christou, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

Assessing Techno-Economic and Environmental Feasibility of Direct Air Carbon Capture and Storage

Student: Pouya Taghavi

Direct Air Carbon Capture and Storage (DACCS) is one of the negative emission technologies considered in the IPCC's Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C. This technology includes removing CO2 from atmosphere using solid or liquid chemicals and storing the captured CO2 in geological formations. Because of the immature nature of DACCS, this mitigation option faces major uncertainties and a robust analysis of its large-scale deployment is missing from the literature. The purpose of this research is to assess the techno-economic and environmental feasibility of this mitigation option and explore innovative financing techniques and policy instruments for its successful deployment.


  • Dr Joana Portugal Pereira, Centre for Environmental Policy
  • Renee Van Diemen, Centre for Environmental Policy

Techno-economic assessment for the hybridisation of a single-flash geothermal power plant with concentrated solar power: a case study in Nicaragua

Student: Loana Vega Castro

Geothermal power plants deliver clean, baseload electricity, but they often fail to reach full capacity due to declining geothermal resources or unstable steam production (i.e. cyclic wells). This performs a techno-economic study of the integration of parabolic trough collectors coupled to a single flash geothermal plant to superheat the steam, increase plant efficiency and power generation. Hourly plant data is used to develop and validate a thermodynamic model of the plant’s current power production process. This is used to evaluate the performance of the system considering various CSP sizes and configurations. An economic analysis is performed to determine the most cost-effective system.


  • Professor Christos Markides, Department of Chemical Engineering
  • Dr Kai Wang, Department of Chemical Engineering