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Personal profile

Personal Statement

The main stream of my research is solid waste valorization for the production of power, heat, fuel, and chemicals. I work on thermochemical conversion technologies (pyrolysis, gasification, liquefaction, combustion, co-firing), and further upgrading. The final products of interest include fossil compatible fuel (bio-gasoline, bio-diesel), fuel additives (ethanol, methanol, dimethyl ether, oxymethylene ethers), gaseous products (hydrogen, methane) and bio-chemicals (e.g. levoglucosan); to realize low carbon, low cost, and low GHG emission bio-fuel production. The research approaches include Quantum Mechanics modelling based on Density Functional Theory (DFT), Molecular Dynamic modelling, Process Modelling, Thermodynamic and Kinetic experimental investigation and Techno-economic Analysis. I have been awarded research projects from various funding bodies including EPSRC, Leverhulme Trust, and industry.

I received a Ph.D. degree from Royal Institute of Technology-KTH, Stockholm, Sweden, and worked as a Post-doc Research Fellow in University of Alberta, Canada. From January 2015 to June 2019, I worked at Queen’s University Belfast (QUB) as a Lecturer and joined University of Strathclyde in July 2019 as a Senior Lecturer (Chancellor's Fellow) under Strathclyde Global Talent Programme. I am currently on the editorial board of two international journals and I am an academic member of the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), a member of the Energy Institute (EI) and a member of American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE).

I am a Fellow of Higher Education Academy in the UK, and have taught core Engineering courses include Thermodynamics, Fluid Mechanics, and Heat Transfer.

Research Interests

  • Waste valorization for production of fuels and advanced materials;
  • Bioenergy, biofuel, production of high value-added chemicals;
  • Pyrolysis, gasification, combustion, carbonization;
  • Process design and manufacturing of renewable energy systems.

Expertise & Capabilities

  • Quantum Mechanics (QM) modelling based on Density Functional Theory (DFT);
  • Process design and optimization of energy systems;
  • Thermodynamic, Energy and Exergy analysis;
  • Techno-economic analysis, System design.

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy, Royal Institute of Technology (KTH)

Sep 2009May 2013

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Projects 2017 2020

Research Output 2008 2020

An energy and exergy analysis of biomass gasification integrated with a char-catalytic tar reforming system

Buentello-Montoya, D. & Zhang, X., 19 Sep 2019, In : Energy and Fuels. 33, 9, p. 8746-8757 12 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Reforming reactions
4 Downloads (Pure)

Assessment of the energy recovery potential of waste Photovoltaic (PV) modules

Farrell, C., Osman, A. I., Zhang, X., Murphy, A., Doherty, R., Morgan, K., Rooney, D. W., Harrison, J., Coulter, R. & Shen, D., 27 Mar 2019, In : Scientific Reports. 9, p. 1-13 13 p., 5267.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
Crystalline materials