Please read our student and staff community guidance on COVID-19
Skip to main content Skip to navigation

PhD in Steel by-product treatment for high-value commercial use

PhD in Steel by-product treatment for high-value commercial use


Project Overview

The project aims to begin tackling the dirty image that both steel and other foundation industries have developed over recent decades that is one associated with an abundance of waste products and large environmental impact. Within steel processing, a plethora of “co-products” are generated which affect the overall productivity and environmental impact of the process. This largely depends on the company, country and site specific utilization. This variability is the platform for which the scope of the project is built upon.

Tata Steel, Port Talbot are investing heavily in strategic environmental improvements within their production site. This projects presents an opportunity to both minimise waste from the plant but also to deviate traditional revenue streams through the formation of unique or local supply chains, stabilising the sites fragility to the volatility of the international steel markets;

  • Low cost hot-metal production – by generating extra value of by-product materials the effective cost of liquid metal production is reduced.
  • Development of circular materials economy – utilizing heat and gases from the process to treat slags reduces waste emitted to the immediate un-recoverable environment. In addition the process can be developed to investigate the usage of landfill bound material for additional loss reduction (free reagents).
  • Reduced environmental impact – Use of works gases presents a pathway to re-carburise lime for CO2 capture, create close pour networks for gas capture and entrain particulates carried within the gas streams. In addition activates around CO2 savings through the supply-chain due to usage of steel production by-products presents a pathway to inform future legislation and enhance the credentials of concentrated industrial material production for foundation industries.

Interviews for this position will involve both WMG in Coventry and Tata Steel in Port Talbot, Wales. This project is in collaboration with Tata steels, Port Talbot, Wales. It is anticipated that the student will access the plant and their industrial supervisor regularly during the project. This is an interdisciplinary project and students with complementary experience are encouraged to apply.


Essential and desirable criteria

Applicants should have a solid understanding of physical sciences and must have a minimum 2.1 undergraduate (BEng, MEng, BSc) and/or postgraduate masters’ qualification (MSc) with 65% or above in a relevant science and technology field: chemistry, physics, materials science or engineering.


Funding and Eligibility

Funding of £18,009 per annum is available for UK/EU applicants for 4 years.

To be eligible for this project the successful applicant should have indefinite leave to remain in the UK and have been ordinarily resident here for 3 years prior to the project start-date, apart from occasional or temporary absences. Additional details of these criteria are available on the EPSRC website.



To apply please complete our online enquiry form and upload your CV.

Key Information

Funding Source: EPSRC iCase

Stipend: £18,009 for 4 years

Supporting Company: Tata Steel

Supervisors: Dr Stephen Spooner, Dr Tara Schiller and Dr Stuart Coles

Available to UK/EU nationals

Start date: We would ideally like someone to start as soon as possible, but we can offer some flexibility on this - please contact us to discuss.