Skip to main content

Recycling Carbon: A nationwide CO2 capture, utilisation & storage network for Ireland


Research Field
Professions and applied sciences
Funding Type
Career Stage
European Research Programme
Not funded by an EU programme




3-year funded PhD position available

Recycling Carbon: A nationwide CO2 capture, utilisation & storage network for Ireland



PhD Project Description: This PhD project, based at NUI Galway, will assess the current and potential future demands for large quantities of CO2 in the Irish economy as part of a broader feasibility study of CCUS (CO2 capture, utilisation & storage) in Ireland. This will include direct CO2 use as well as industrial use in chemicals/pharmaceuticals, food and beverages and construction materials. In the expectation that these projected demands will be smaller than the current amount of CO2 emitted, the majority of the work may focus on production of synthetic fuels and/or biofuels. Due to the quantities of CO2, hydrogen and biomass needing to be transported and stored around the country in this case, supply chains will be mapped, optimised and costed. This project will consist of thermodynamic and techno-economic modelling of all CO2 use scenarios, geographical information systems (GIS) mapping, and supply chain optimisation. The PhD researcher will work closely with others in Dr Monaghan’s group focusing on hydrogen and bioenergy supply chains.

Background: NUI Galway and the University of Liverpool have been awarded funding to perform a comprehensive feasibility study of CCUS in Ireland. Work Package (WP) 1 will fully update Monaghan’s 2006 techno-economic models of CCS (no utilisation) to the current state of the art. This will include updates of all capture efficiencies and costs of capture, transport and injection. It will also refocus the 2006 model from coal to gas, bioenergy including anaerobic digesters and industrial sources of CO2. Bioenergy with CCS (BECCS) is a negative emissions technology, which the IPCC, IEA and others predict will be needed if 1.5 oC of warming is to be avoided. WP2 will extend understanding of Ireland’s storage capacity by modelling the role fault structures in Ireland play in subsurface CO2 storage reservoirs with newly available data. WP3 will explore the potential of a completely new form of CO2 storage, mineralisation in high temperature geological environments. This is an emerging field of study and has not been characterised for many countries including Ireland. It will involve both experimental tests and modelling. WPs 1-3 will fully update our understanding of CCS (not CCUS) to the international state of the art. WP4 (this PhD project) will explore the utilisation of CO2 in non-geological settings. Possible uses of CO2 include food/drink preparation, “green chemistry” building blocks, construction materials, and synthetic fuels. Supply chains for these products will be designed and costed. Researchers in these fives WPs will work closely together to deliver the overall project.

Duration: 1st September 2020 – 30th August 2023

Stipend & tuition: €18,500 per annum plus tuition fees for 3 years.

Requirements: Honours Bachelors (Level 8) degree in Engineering with at least a 2.1 Honours grade or equivalent. A Masters degree (Level 9) is preferred but is not absolutely required. The successful candidate will have a strong background in thermodynamics, modelling languages (including for example Matlab, Python, Aspen). Extremely strong written and spoken English communication skills are essential. Backgrounds in geographic information systems (GIS), optimisation and/or life cycle assessment are advantageous.

How to apply: Send a one-page cover letter, and your CV with names and contact details of two referees to the project supervisor, Dr. Rory Monaghan at, with “CCUS PhD application” in the subject line. The closing date for receipt of applications is 9pm (Irish time) Sunday 31st May 2020.

Additional information

Dr. Rory Monaghan: Google Scholar:, LinkedIn:, Twitter: @IrishEnergyGuy, email:



Organisation name
National University of Ireland Galway
Organisation Country
More Information

The responsibility for the funding offers published on this website, including the funding description, lies entirely with the publishing institutions. The application is handled uniquely by the employer, who is also fully responsible for the recruitment and selection processes.