Postgraduate research opportunities Effects of hydrogen addition on soot formation in flames: experimental investigation by laser imaging


Key facts

  • Opens: Wednesday 27 January 2021
  • Number of places: One
  • Duration: 3.5 years
  • Funding: Home fee, Stipend


This projects involves the application of laser imaging techniques to study soot formation. The particular interest is in flames where hydrogen is blended with hydrocarbon fuel. The ultimate goal is improved understanding (and thus minimisation) of pollutant formation.
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Candidates applying should have (or expect to achieve) a minimum 2.1 undergraduate degree in a relevant engineering or science discipline, and be highly motivated to undertake multidisciplinary research. Interested candidates should apply as soon as possible.

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Project Details

The health effects of fine, non-volatile particulate matter, and precursor aromatic species, generated by engines and furnaces are increasingly wellknown and have been the subject of considerable public interest in recent years. Likewise, there is increasing awareness of the potential role of particulate emissions in influencing climate change. Perhaps surprisingly, the mechanisms underlying the formation of soot are not currently well understood. The effect of hydrogen on soot formation is a focus of attention for this project since some fuel-flexible future energy strategies involve blending hydrogen with conventional fuel such as natural gas (or biogas). This necessitates control of emissions of soot and aromatics for fuel blends.

Understanding the effect of hydrogen addition may also help to elucidate the underlying mechanisms of soot formation more generally. The technique to be used, laser-induced incandescence (LII), involves heating the soot in a flame or exhaust using a short-pulse laser and imaging the resulting emissions using a short-gated ICCD. The complementary technique of laser-induced fluorescence (LIF) will be used for imaging of aromatic species, temperature, and other intermediate species radicals. The requested studentship is related the LITECS EPSRC Programme Grant. Our role in LITECS is in underpinning the development of measurement systems for particulate imaging in industrial gas turbine combustor test rigs.

In addition to undertaking cutting edge research, students are also registered for the Postgraduate Certificate in Researcher Development (PGCert), which is a supplementary qualification that develops a student’s skills, networks and career prospects.

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Funding details

Funding covers full Home fees for the 3.5 year duration of the project, and an annual stipend for living costs.

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Dr Iain Burns

Senior Lecturer
Chemical and Process Engineering

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During the application you'll be asked for the following information and evidence uploaded to the application:

  • your full contact details
  • transcripts and certificates of all degrees
  • proof of English language proficiency if you are not from a majority English-speaking country as recognised by UKVI
  • two references, one of which must be academic. Please see our guidance on referees
  • funding or scholarship information
  • international students must declare any previous UK study

By filling these details out as fully as possible, you'll avoid any delay to your application being processed by the University.

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Contact us

Miss Ewa Olech

+44(0) 141 548 2835
James Weir Building, 75 Montrose Street, Glasgow, G1 1XJ