With the steady increase in the penetrations of wind and other renewable energy to the power generation mix, conventional power generations are required to operate with more flexibility, wider fuel date and substantially lower emission. This put significant challenges to both existing and new built power stations in terms of technical, economical and safety requirements. This project aims to combine computational fluid dynamics simulations; chemical process modelling and virtual reality techniques and develop a virtual reality energy system simulation tool for future zero mission power generation system. The simulation tool will be able to simulate the operation of a power plant in a virtual environment in order to investigate the integration of new technologies to the power plant, to optimise the control of the plant performance under high renewable penetration conditions and to improve power plant staff training and education.
The studentship will support a highly motivated researcher to undertake this cutting edge research for future energy and power generation systems. The successful applicant will receive appropriate training to work at the forefront of research.
The studentship will be available for a period of 3.0 years at the standard EPSRC rate which covers UK/EU fees and includes a non-taxable stipend, currently of £14,296p.a., 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 and therefore the successful candidates should fulfil the eligibility criteria for EPSRC funding through UK nationality and/or residency status.
The research work will be based in the Energy 2050 initiative within the University of Sheffield, and the Department of Mechanical Engineering 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 Ingham (D.Ingham@Sheffield.ac.uk)
This project aims to combine computational fluid dynamics, chemical process modelling and virtual system simulation techniques to develop a dynamic modelling tool for power plant performance simulations. The developed tool can be employed to investigate the integration of new technologies to the power plant, to optimise the control of the plant performance under high renewable penetration conditions and to improve power plant staff training and education.
The use of natural gas as a fuel for electricity production is expected to gradually increase in the next decades. Since it is acknowledged that large CO2 emission cuts should be achieved in the near future, it seems plausible that these systems may have to be coupled to CO2 capture schemes. This research project focuses on combining computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and process simulation tools to study in detail the performance of an amine capture post-combustion plant coupled to a natural gas combined cycle (NGCC) power plant using the synergetic combination between Ansys Fluent and Aspen Hysys/gCCS (gPROMS) modelling tools. The idea is to replace the typical absorber and stripper blocks present in the process simulation flowsheet by more detail-designed units built using CFD tools. This will allow for a more accurate description of the system and better characterization of the performance of the key units of the capture process. Several NGCC variants will be studied and analyzed following this procedure, including conventional NGCC plants and those incorporating exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) and selective exhaust gas recirculation (S-EGR) options. This is part of research activities that include virtual reality power industry plant simulation.
The new generation of power plants should offer effective solutions to reduce emissions and implement CO2 capture and storage. However, the combination of a complex fuel-processing plant and the level of integration lead to challenging problems with respect to the dynamic/transient operation. In addition, electricity market demands require more flexible controlling of the power plant output. These operation specifications can be satisfied by proper design of the process, its equipment and control system. A dynamic model of the entire system is an advantageous tool to test the effect of different process configurations and different control strategies. For carbon capture, an oxygen-rich oxidant is used, which requires an air separation unit for oxygen generation. Power generation plant options are Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle (IGCC) and Oxyfuel combustion.