Energy Generation:

Energy Systems

  • Power Generation in rural communities – Fully funded PhD Scholarship

    Power Generation in rural communities - Fully funded PhD Scholarship

    Supervisor: Professor Mohamed Pourkashanian

    For electrification projects to be successful, they must be suitable for the needs of the communities using them. Whilst electricity generation from some renewable sources is intermittent, hybrid solutions integrated with other forms of power generation and storage are able to provide reliable power, and can be optimised to a lower economic cost. There is also potential for smart grids and more adaptive local demand. Models and systems used for delivering energy to rural areas have been designed in industrialised countries, so there is uncertainty about how appropriate they are for developing countries. Areas where socio-technical nexus issues are particularly important include modelling load profiles, calculating willingness to pay and ongoing maintenance. This research will look at ways to evaluate microgrid systems and models, identifying how they can be improved by jointly considering social and technical aspects.

    The major current areas of research in the group include carbon capture technology from power generation, low emission CCGT technology, clean coal/biomass combustion technology, fuel cells, alternative aviation fuels, biogas from waste, etc.

    The successful applicant will receive appropriate training to work at the forefront of research in the relevant areas of research.

    The studentship will be available for a period of 3 years at the standard RCUK rate which covers UK/EU fees and includes a non-taxable stipend at the RCUK rate (£14,777 in 2018/2019) and a budget for IT equipment, books, software and travelling to conferences, and/or project meetings.

    Potential applicants should have, or are expecting to obtain in the near future, a first class honours degree in engineering, mathematics, or science. The studentship is open to UK/EU candidates only. The successful candidate should fulfil the eligibility criteria for EPSRC funding through UK/ EU nationality and residency status.

    The research work will be based in the Energy Engineering Group within the Department of Mechanical Engineering, which is a part of the Energy 2050 initiative within the University of Sheffield to develop world-leading activity in energy research. The student will be working within an exciting and dynamic group with approximately 40 PhD researchers and over 12 postdoctoral research fellows undertaking a broad area of energy research with strong links to industry.

    The Department of Mechanical Engineering has been a major discipline in the University since its foundation in 1905. The Research Excellence Framework (REF, December 2014) placed the Department within the Top 5 for Mechanical Engineering in the UK.

    For further information please contact Professor Derek B Ingham    phone: 0114 21 57215    email:

  • Power Generation in rural communities – Fully funded PhD Scholarship

    Integration of renewables into energy systems-forecasting model development and analysis

    Supervisor: Supervisors: Professor Mohamed Pourkashanian, Professor Lin Ma and Dr Dr Bita Najmi

    With the introduction of legal binding emission reduction targets, power systems across the world will have to be decarbonised to meet the targets.  As such new energy technologies, such as renewables, are required to be deployed into energy systems. However, penetration of various renewables into electricity production systems raises a number of technical and economic challenges mainly due to the random and intermittent nature of renewables, such as wind and solar compared to fossil fuel based thermal power plants.

    The aim of this research is to address challenges associated with integration of renewable energy systems into the power grid, considering technical, economical and regulatory aspects for a secure and reliable energy supply.  Forecasting energy models are to be developed by applying different scenarios to predict the mid-term and long-term energy mix and share of renewables in energy production. The model will also be able to analyse the change of trends towards the use of coal-based and natural-gas based power plants and how they will compete with other energy production technologies in the future.

    The outcome of the research will contribute in answering a broad range of research questions on energy management and renewables integration as well as be a good source of assistance to governments, industry owners and policy makers in making insightful decisions about application of different energy systems.