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Fundamental understanding on biomass application in net-zero EAF steelmaking

Fundamental understanding on biomass application in net-zero EAF steelmaking

Project Overview

An enthusiastic individual is being invited to join a team of researchers to work on the EPSRC (Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council) Industrial Case funded project with industrial partner Tata Steel UK. The aim of this project is to create fundamental knowledge of biomass application in EAF (Electric Arc Furnace) steelmaking, supporting the transition to net-zero steel manufacturing.

Steel is an irreplaceable material in our modern life, while steel industry accounts for 7% of global anthropogenic CO2 emissions. A variety of low emission steel manufacturing processes, including the proven EAF route, are being developed to convert the currently dominating Blast Furnace – Basic Oxygen Furnace (BF-BOF) steelmaking route to low CO2 or CO2 free steelmaking route. In conventional EAF steelmaking, significant amount of fossil fuel such as anthracite is charged or injected into the bath to provide chemical energy and create slag foaming, which will not be possible in future scrap-based net-zero EAF steelmaking. In the scrap-based, net-zero EAF steelmaking, carbon neutral biomass could be the major carbon source to provide chemical energy and create slag foaming for the EAF process. In EAF steelmaking, foamy slag plays a critical role in covering/stabilising the arc, increasing energy efficiency, shielding the refractories from the arc plasma, and reducing the pick-up of nitrogen (N2) and other impurities, so appropriate slag foaming is extremely important to ensure the EAF increase productivity and quality at competitive costs.

Therefore, to enable CO2 free green steelmaking, this PhD project will thoroughly investigate the physical and chemical characteristics of different carbonaceous materials for the EAF Steelmaking process, with a focus on reaction mechanisms and kinetics between biomass and FeO-containing slag. The project will advance our understanding on carbon behaviour in EAF steelmaking process and provide information on physical and chemical properties required for biomass to ensure appropriate slag foaming in the net-zero EAF steelmaking.

The research will be carried out by using the world-leading research facilities (high temperature experiment, advanced characterisation and modelling) at the Advanced Steel Research Centre (ASRC) of WMG, the University of Warwick. This PhD studentship also offers a unique opportunity to work with the leading scientists at Tata Steel UK.

Essential and Desirable Criteria

We are actively seeking an enthusiastic individual to join the Advanced Steel Research Centre (ASRC) at WMG, the University of Warwick with the following entry requirements and expectations:

A 1st or 2.1 undergraduate (BEng, BSc, MEng) and/or postgraduate masters’ qualification (MSc) in a science and technology field such as Metallurgy, Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, Physics, Materials Science and Engineering, Manufacturing.

A passion and enthusiasm to challenge the state-of-the-art and to apply the world leading research facilities for the creation of critical knowledge and its industrial applications.

Funding and Eligibility

Funding of £19,237 per annum for 4 years.

Funding is available to eligible Home fee status and UK domicile EU students.

To apply please complete our online enquiry form and upload your CV, transcripts and certificates of previous studies to allow us to assess your suitability for this specific PhD.

* Please ensure you meet the minimum requirements before filling in the online form.

Key Information

Funding Source: EPSRC Industrial CASE (iCASE)

Stipend: £19,237 per annum for 4 year

Supporting Company: Tata Steel UK

Supervisor: University of Warwick: Professor Zushu Li, Dr Zhiming Yan

Available to Home fee status and UK domicile EU students

Start date: October 2024