Decarbonisation in Steel Industry

  


1. Project title: Process modelling of ironmaking blast furnaces

Ironmaking blast furnaces (BFs) is the dominant reactor to convert iron ore to iron products. The design and control of ironmaking BFs must be optimised to become more competitive and sustainable, particularly under economic and environmental demanding conditions.
 
This project aims to study in-furnace multiphase flow, heat and mass transfers, and performance of ironmaking BFs, towards achieving reliable, cost- and energy-effective, and low-emission production. The discrete-based modelling methods with particle-scale information captured and the continuum-based modelling methods with macro-scale information obtained are developed in our ProMO group to efficiently unveil the features of local and global multiphase flow and thermochemical behaviours inside BFs. 
 
We welcome talented students who are interested in this work, and we have a variety of scholarships for both domestic and international students. The research experience and skills acquired during PhD study will develop high end job opportunities in global leading iron ore companies.

 

 

 

 2. Project title: Data-driven optimisation of chemical reactors

One important topic in Industry 4.0 trend is smart manufacturing in conventional and emerging industries.This project aims to develop an innovative data-driven modelling approach for online describing complex multiphase flow and real time prediction of operational anomalies. At this point, ProMO group handles complex nonlinear problems using state-of-the-art numerical methods including artificial neural networks (ANN), support vector machine (SVM), and the random forest (RF).

Novelty and Contribution: This is a promising new research area at the frontier of applying novel data-driven method in chemical engineering fields. It is part of the alternative research to traditional computational fluid dynamics (CFD) processing technologies to achieve high-efficiency prediction of chemical reactors, therefore, enhancing reactions performances.

Expected Outcome: It is expected that the successful candidate will participate in international conferences and will publish his/her work in high impact factor journals. This work will expand the capabilities of the student in both industrial and academic career.


3. Project title: Designs and optimisation of biomass upgrading and combustion technology

Biomass, a carbon neutral fuel, has been reported as one of the most feasible and low-cost renewable energy sources for future energy supply, representing 14% of the total amount of renewable energy at present. Biomass gasification is an innovative technology for converting diverse types of biomass into clean synthesis gas, transportation fuels, chemicals, and other products. This project aims to develop next generation biomass upgrading technologies towards high efficiency, low cost, and low greenhouse gas emission technologies. Several PhD topics are available at ProMO group.

      • Biomass gasification including model development, new process design, mechanism study, and industrial application.
      • Biomass combustion in ironmaking blast furnace including model development, sub-model development and operational optimisation.
      • Co-gasification or co-combustion of biomass and other fuels, including used tire and coal.

We welcome talented students who are interested in this work to join our group.  We have a variety of scholarships for both domestic and international students. 



 

4. Project title: Development and scale-up of next generation coal upgrading technologies

Project summary:

Coal represents one of the most important resources in Australian economy.  Coal research represents promising career opportunities in Australia. However, coal should be a more thermal-efficient and environmentally friendly fuel, i.e. clean oil and gas, for wider and cleaner applications. However, these processes are very complicating and challenging in design. In collaboration with coal industry, this project will study next generation coal upgrading technologies by combining both numerical simulations and experiments.

Novelty and Contribution:

Using the advanced numerical modelling approaches, the innovative process can be designed, illustrated and scaled-up in a cost-effective manner. For example, in our previous studies, a set of CFD models were developed to describe the Victoria brown coal pyrolysis from lab-scale to industrial-scale (bottom right figure).

Expected outcome:

This project will continue the effort in the model development for coal upgrading technologies as well as the understanding of the mechanism behind the complex thermochemical phenomena. A number of scientific articles and conference presentations will also be produced within the duration of the project. 

We welcome talented students who are interested in this work to join our group. We have a variety of scholarships for both domestic and international students. 


 

5. Project title: Numerical study of clean coal combustion

Coal remains as the most widely used energy resource in the foreseeable future. Chemical looping combustion (CLC), which has intrinsic merit of separating CO2 during the combustion process, has been regarded as one of the most promising clean coal combustion technologies with near-zero emission of pollutants. However, the multi-scale structures and multi-physics processes of multi-phase flow in the fuel reactor (FR) and air reactor (AR) of the CLC require in-depth understandings for further design and optimisation of industrial-scales apparatus.

This project aims to design next generation CLC system via a series of numerical studies of CLC systems using advanced numerical modelling approaches. Previously, two-fluid model combined with thermochemical sub-models was developed to study the physical-thermal-chemical characteristics of dense gas-solid reaction flows in a CLC system. This project will continue to explore the application and optimisation of the CLC process in aspects of reactor design, oxygen carrier selection, and reaction kinetics simplification.

We welcome talented students who are interested in this work to join our group.  We have a variety of scholarships for both domestic and international students. The research experience and skills acquired during PhD study will increase job opportunities in this promising area.

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