Graduate Research Education Programme in Engineering (GREP Eng) 2011-2015
Emissions using stochastic LCA models
Life cycle assessment (LCA) is used extensively in policy assessment for comparing policies/technologies and estimating marginal abatement costs (MACs). It is based on a variety of uncertain data and uses competing estimation models. However, the quantification of uncertainty rarely if ever addressed as part of the estimation process. This work aims to answer the following questions: how to classify uncertainty in LCA, where does it arise, and how is it best quantified? The work involves the development of an integrated LCA uncertainty estimation method and verification techniques linked to LCA models using hybrid process/input-output estimation methods. For a short history on Deidre's research please click here.
Switchable optical technologies for solar energy applications
Switchable mirrors and windows respectively switch between a transparent and a reflective state and between a transparent and an opaque state. Core solar energy applications include the control of solar energy transfer through windows to the users’ environment (buildings, cars, planes, etc.) and the concentration of solar energy by optically tracking the sun (without mechanical parts) through the combination of switchable mirrors allowing multiple optical paths. To understand the potential integration of some technologies within an application in a specific environment the current research consists of qualifying switchable optical technologies both in laboratory and outdoor conditions, developing and validating optical models, control strategies and methods.
Multifunctional Evacuated Switchable Glazing
Evacuated glazing has potential to reduce the heat losses compared to double pane air filled glazing systems. Evacuation of a glazing system can be replaced by highly porous aerogel material of low thermal conductivity. Smart windows (electrochromic, liquid crystal or suspended particle device) control solar heat gain by changing their colours. The colour change is a function of applied power across the window. This required power can be supplied by integrated solar cell, which reduces the necessity of external power supply. Multifunctional evacuated switchable glazing is a combination of vacuum glazing (or aerogel), smart window technology and a solar cell resulting in reduced heat losses, better solar gain control and autonomous power generation. My work involves system modelling, verification and optimisation. System optimization will be performed based on electrical, optical and heat transfer methods. U-value and optical characterization, electrical performance of commercial vacuum glazing, smart glazing and double-glazing will also be investigated using test cell method.