PhD Position: The Development of an Energy Efficient Air Pollution Control Device for Indoor Ventilation

The Department of Civil, Structural & Environmental Engineering, Trinity College Dublin and the Global Centre for Clean Air Research (GCARE), University of Surrey, United Kingdom, invite applications for a PhD Research position. The position is funded under the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland's Research Development and Demonstration Programme. The project will comprise the development of an energy efficient particulate air pollution control device for use in building HVAC systems. The project work will involve the development and testing of physical prototypes at sites in Ireland as well as the use of CFD modelling to optimise energy and pollution control performance. The project will involve periods of time working with Professor Prashant Kumar at the Global Centre for Clean Air Research in the University of Surrey, while the successful candidate will primarily be based in Trinity College Dublin. Trinity College Dublin (TCD) was founded in 1592 and is the oldest and highest ranked University in Ireland (41st in the world - QS 2016 ranking). The School of Engineering generates €7-8 million in annual research income and is ranked in the top 1% of Engineering Schools in the world on the basis of citations. It is the highest ranked Engineering School in Ireland and was ranked in the top 100 internationally in the category of Engineering and Technology by QS World University Rankings. The School has a long history of research in the fields of air pollution science and building energy. The Global Centre for Clean Air Research at the University of Surrey, UK, is a multidisciplinary centre, researching in areas of air pollution, air-climate interactions, built and natural environments in the context of cities, megacities and rural areas, with an aim to develop engineering driven solutions and regulatory strategies for mitigation of environmental risks by means of advanced measurements and modelling techniques. The GCARE's research projects are funded by the RCUK (e.g., EPSRC, NERC, Innovate UK), numerous national and international funding bodies (e.g., QNRF, EU H2020, British Council, UKIERI) and the industry.

This PhD project work will comprise:

  • The development and assessment of full-scale prototypes
  • Long-term monitoring of air pollution indoors and outdoors at a commercial building
  • Modelling of air pollution indoors and outdoors.

This project is a follow-on study to previous work described in detail in:

  • McNabola et al. The Development and Assessment of an Aspiration Efficiency Reducing System of Air Pollution Control for Particulate Matter in Building Ventilation Systems, Energy and Buildings, 61, 2013, p177 - 184.
  • Morgan et al. Reducing energy consumption and increasing filter life in HVAC systems using an aspiration efficiency reducer: Long-term performance assessment at full-scale, Journal of Building Engineering, 12, 2017, p267 - 274.

In addition to the main research work, the successful applicant will also be expected to contribute to the production of project reports and scientific papers on the topic, as well as other minor administrative duties. Applicants with a masters or bachelors degree in areas of Engineering or Science relating to one or more of the core areas of the project will be considered:

  • Air Pollution,
  • Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) Modelling
  • Fieldwork & Prototype Development
  • Building HVAC Systems & Energy Efficiency

Applicants with a 1st class honours degree or equivalent are strongly encouraged. Funding for the research project, commencing in March 1st 2019, will be €18,500 per annum for a period of 36 months. An allowance of €6,000 per annum to cover EU university fees is also included.

Candidates are asked to send a cover letter, full CV and the names of two referees to the address below. Closing date Jan 2nd 2019.

Dr Aonghus McNabola
Head of Department,
Department of Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering,
Trinity College Dublin,
Telephone +353-1-8963837

posted: 30 November 2018     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.