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Apply by: 2022-08-31

PhD Studentship, Energy Storage Modelling

Published 2022-07-11

Mechanical Engineering

Location:  Highfield Campus
Closing Date:  Wednesday 31 August 2022
Reference:  1895322DA
Supervisory Team:    Prof. Andy Cruden & Dr Richard Wills

Project description
Applications are invited for a fully-funded PhD studentship to investigate the electrical, thermal and economic modelling of a range of electrical energy storage types (e.g. lithium-ion and lead-acid batteries, flow cells and fuel cells), with a view to further investigation of the potential to directly hybridise these energy stores (i.e. operate and manage direct parallel hybrids of combinations of these energy storage types). This PhD will support a wider research team working on a new EPSRC funded Programme Grant entitled ‘Future Electric Vehicle Energy networks supporting Renewables (FEVER)’, grant ref: EP/W005883/1.

The need to rapidly electrify the transport sector is being driven by the recognition that this sector is now the largest single source of carbon emissions in the UK. Whilst the purchase and use of new battery and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (EVs) is increasing the publically available re-charging infrastructure is lagging behind, and Government have acknowledged this through recent announcement of a £1.5bn EV charging infrastructure programme.

However a major obstacle remains in terms of the current electrical grid capacity and connection process to facilitate new charging stations.

The focus of the FEVER project is to develop new, grid independent, 100% renewable energy supplied, EV charging stations. As the input energy is in the form of stochastic renewable energy, the charging station architecture requires to utilise a novel energy store, capable of regulating seasonally variable input energy against a daily and weekly pattern of EV charging use. The novel energy store must be capable of meeting the charging power and energy requirements of EVs, whilst satisfying the charging station annual energy flows and economic model. For example, a lithium-ion battery system on its on could not meet these diverse requirements and a novel energy storage hybrid system will be investigated.

The successful PhD candidate will be required to undertake a detailed literature review of existing models, understand and develop the various means of direct experimental characterisation used to parameterise these models, and also to investigate options and issues surrounding the direct parallel operation of a range of combinations of these energy stores. The resulting hybrid energy store is required to facilitate new grid independent, 100% renewable energy sourced, electric vehicle charging stations.

The successful candidate will be part of the Energy Technology Research Group within the Mechanical Engineering Department at University of Southampton. Training will be provided at the beginning of the project to help the student start these investigations, and the student will also benefit from attendance and participation in FEVER consortium meetings with a range of external stakeholders, including industrial partners.

Entry Requirements
A very good undergraduate degree with a UK 1st Class honours degree (minimum 2:1), or its international equivalent.

Closing date: 31 August 2022.

Funding: For UK students, Tuition Fees and a stipend of £16,062 tax-free p.a. for up to 3.5 years. 

How To Apply
Applications should be made online https://www.southampton.ac.uk/courses/how-to-apply/postgraduate-applications.page. Select programme type (Research), 2022/23, Faculty of Physical Sciences and Engineering, next page select “PhD  Engineering & Environment (Full time)”. In Section 2 of the application form Please enter Energy Storage Modelling under the Topic or Field of Research.

Applications should include
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Two reference letters
  • Degree Transcripts to date
For further information please contact: feps-pgr-apply@soton.ac.uk 

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