PhD scholarship: Biocoke Production

Location St Lucia


Faculty of Engineering, Architecture and Information Technology School of Chemical Engineering The School of Chemical Engineering is an international leader in the chemical engineering field and has an excellent reputation, built over many decades at The University of Queensland. We deliver quality programs and leadership in chemical engineering education, research and development, and expert consulting to support the process industries. Undergraduate teaching within the School focuses on the disciplines of chemical, biological, environmental and metallurgical engineering and postgraduate programs are available in growing fields including water, sustainable energy and petroleum engineering.

For more Information about the School, please visit:

au/chemeng Research Environment UQ ranks in the top 50 as measured by the Performance Ranking of Scientific Papers for World Universities. The University also ranks 46 in the QS World University Rankings, 42 in the US News Best Global Universities Rankings, 66 in the Times Higher Education World University Rankings and 54 in the Academic Ranking of World Universities. The Award Supervisor – Associate Professor Karen Steel The export of metallurgical coal to the EU and Japan is currently a major industry for Australia.

In these overseas countries coal is transformed to coke and used in blast furnaces to produce steel. There is currently no viable replacement for coke and attention has turned to whether renewable biomass feedstocks can be blended with coal to reduce fossil-fuel derived CO2. There are substantial challenges around producing cokes having acceptable strength and reaction properties.

Predicting strength and reactivity for coal blends has been an area of research in UQ’s School of Chemical Engineering and School of Earth and Environmental Sciences and the research outcomes have shed light on how to successfully blend biomass derived feedstocks. These outcomes have led to this project. This project involves using a variety of experimental and analytical tools to track the physical and chemical mechanisms occurring during the pyrolysis and carbonisation of coal/biomass blends.

These tools include high temperature rheometry to obtain viscoelastic properties, thermogravimetric analysis to monitor volatile release behaviour, 13C NMR, XPS and X-ray micro-CT analysis to track changes to the molecular structure and microstructure. This tracking will enable the PhD candidate to build a comprehensive account of the mechanisms leading to the strength and reactivity properties of the coke. From this the candidate will be able to identify optimum blend designs and engage in technology transfer activities.

It follows that this project is focused on obtaining new knowledge and on developing a new technology for steelmakers as they become increasingly focused on their CO2 emissions. The skills and expertise acquired is expected to lead to career opportunities in industry. Selection criteria To be el.

The University of Queensland
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$28,092.00 - $28,092.00

Work Type

Full Time


15 Sep 2020


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