Research Associate in Energy System

Research Associate in Energy System

Heriot-Watt University

Edinburgh, United Kingdom

About our Team

The holder of this post will support our work on the EPSRC project ‘EnergyREV: Accelerating Smart Local Energy Systems’. EnergyREV is funded under the Prospering from the Energy Revolution (PFER) programme that was launched by the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF). EnergyREV has shaped and defined a strategic programme of applied interdisciplinary research which aims to achieve significant outputs in the areas of whole energy systems and smart local energy systems. This will inform future energy investment by companies and Government. It will coordinate and integrate existing UK world-class knowledge, research teams and facilities, and through this provide advice, research and innovation support to help ensure the success of the PFER programme.

Detailed Description

We are seeking a motivated and enthusiastic postdoctoral research associate to support our work on the EPSRC project ‘EnergyREV: Accelerating Smart Local Energy Systems’. More specifically, the tasks relevant to this post focus on the Work Package led by Heriot-Watt University on ‘System Level Scale-Up of Smart Local Energy Systems’.

The successful post holder will focus on conducting a multi-disciplinary evaluation of several deployed local systems to date in the UK. This will include multi-vector analysis, electrical energy management systems and energy resources and demand management. Non-technical barriers are considered in other project Work Packages, and where needed, additional information will be complemented. One potential case study considered is based in Orkney and other cases studies will be identified and investigated, from which key technical and non-technical challenges can be evaluated (in conjunction with other Work Packages).

The successful applicant must hold a PhD (or about to obtain) in mechanical, chemical engineering or related discipline with background and expertise in energy systems and/or energy systems integration.

The project will be carried out in close collaboration between the different project partners and travel to coordinate the research project and to deliver the project objectives will be necessary.

Key duties and responsibilities

The post holder is required to:

  • Conduct collaborative interdisciplinary research on evaluating local energy systems.
  • Conduct literature review of technical and non-technical barriers to local energy systems.
  • Work with the project PI and other relevant project staff to identify case studies and methodology refinement.
  • Conduct interviews, workshops, etc with case study leaders and relevant stakeholders.
  • Prepare reports for case studies evaluated.
  • Strong collaboration with the team to integrate Work Package results.
  • Develop and execute plans to support project objectives.
  • Analyse results and communicate recommendations to project teams.
  • Identify opportunities and prepare proposals to support project.
  • Manage project activities to achieve on-time completion of project milestones and deliverables.
  • Work collaboratively with the team to achieve the project goals. This includes coordination of interdisciplinary teams, supervision of students/junior researchers and maintenance/support of the facilities/equipment. This will also require travel between the different project partners to coordinate the research project.
  • Maintain rigorous experimental and analytical records (data collection, quality control and data analysis) and progress generated intellectual property and data analysis as well as comply with safe working practices.
  • Responsibilities will also include assistance in the day-to-day maintenance of the experimental facilities (as appropriate), liaising with companies and external collaborators.
  • Prepare technical reports, posters and presentations for progress meetings, advisory board meetings and other as required dissemination activities.
  • Project coordination with other partners, work both independently and as part of a team to achieve overall programme milestones to time, liaising with team members, collaborating project partners and sponsors.
  • Take responsibility for progressing a primary research project, whilst also contributing to other projects underway within the team, e.g. supervising the activities of junior group members and PhD students.
  • Contribute scientifically through scholarly acquisition and dissemination of research through the production of reports, publications, presentations and travel to meetings to outreach to the scientific community and general public.
  • Analyse and interpret the results of own research and generate original ideas bases on outcomes. Prepare proposals and applications to external bodies, e.g. for funding purposes. Use initiative and creativity to identify areas for research, develop new research methods and extend the research portfolio.
  • Assist the development of student research skills, and be expected to contribute to the assessment of student knowledge in the context of teaching and supervision duties. Could be expected to contribute to specialist courses such as research methods and equipment.
  • Develop research objectives and proposals for own or joint research with the assistance of a mentor, if required. Conduct individual and collaborative research projects, making use of relevant research techniques and methods.
  • Build internal contacts and participate in internal networks for the exchange of information and to form relationships for future collaboration. Work with academic colleagues on areas of shared research interest and contribute to collaborative decision making. Join external networks to share information and identify potential sources of funds. Formalise connections with companies interested in working with RCCS and identify and develop new opportunities.
  • Contribute, under supervision, to the planning of research projects, including the development of new grant/contract proposals. Make internal and external contacts to develop knowledge and understanding and form relationships for future collaboration.
  • Good communication skills and an appropriate publication record are essential.
  • Continue to update personal knowledge and to develop skills within own specialist research area.
  • The successful candidate is also expected to be involved in our outreach activities, with roles that can be tuned to the specific preferences of the candidate but will involve for example interviews, talks for the general public and preparation of experimental demonstrators.

Education, qualifications and experience

Essential Criteria

  • PhD (or about to obtain) in mechanical, chemical engineering or related discipline with background and expertise in local energy systems and/or energy systems integration.
  • Strong experience in evaluating local energy systems.
  • Experience of knowledge sharing and training members of the team
  • Experience of publication of academic journal papers and reports.
  • Strong organizational skills and project management.
  • Working in an interdisciplinary field, where gaining knowledge of new areas and techniques is a constant requirement.
  • Excellent communication and presentation skills, and ability to communicate complex information clearly.
  • Must be able to work as part of a team on the experiments at Heriot-Watt and more widely with the collaborators at other Universities.

Desirable Criteria

  • Working knowledge of systems models for scale-up.
  • Experience in non-technical barriers for local-energy systems.
  • Experience of interaction with industry.
  • Experience supervising students.
  • Skills in writing bids for research grants.

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© EuroJobsites 2019

EuroJobsites is a UK registered company number: 4694396 VAT number: GB 880 9055 04

Registered address: EuroJobsites Ltd, Unit 8, Kingsmill Business Park, Kingston Upon Thames, London, KT1 3GZ, United Kingdom

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