As part of a DETR funded PiT (Partners in Technology) project the BRE Centre for Fire Safety Engineering (previously the Structures in Fire Group) conducted extensive computational and analytical studies of the behaviour of steel-framed composite structures in fire conditions. This work was undertaken in collaboration with Corus PLC and Imperial College London. The results were presented in the form of a main report, which identified the main findings, together with numerous supplementary reports which explored various phenomena in detail. The reports produced at Edinburgh are available for download as indicated below.
We propose to develop and implement a genetic platform for optimizing blends of enzymes for biomass processing applications, using computational modeling, combinatorial gene assembly, expression control and high-throughput screening of gene cassettes from a library of genes in modular format. In addition to providing optimal enzyme blends for any given application, analysis of the results will allow us to develop heuristics which will facilitate rational design of biomass processing systems in the future, and will lead to a deeper understanding of biomass degradation processes.
This project is concerned with socially integrated mitigation of multiple structural risks in the urban environment, with a focus on the linked risks of earthquake and fire. Fire is the largest contributor to building damage following earthquakes. To date, this research area has largely been ignored as it crosses the boundaries between the knowledge areas of earthquake and fire safety engineering. The combination of factors adds to the challenges in risk estimation already existing in each distinct area. There is currently no universally accepted method for accounting for the effect of strengthening practices on building vulnerability to earthquakes (let alone earthquakes followed by fire). In the case of fire safety engineering, few credible techniques for damage estimation or risk-based design currently exist due to a lack of requisite input data. This project will develop, through large scale structural testing and computational analysis, new technical engineering solutions to these problems. And, for the first time, these technical engineering solutions will be developed explicitly accounting for the social context within which they are to be enacted.
This project will design, build, install and operate an open ocean 4.5MW tidal energy farm in the Inner Sound in the Pentland Firth, off the Northern coast of Scotland. The project ("Clearwater") will demonstrate the technical and economic feasibility of a multi-turbine tidal energy array, an essential step to catalyse development of commercial projects in the EU ocean energy industry. Project Clearwater provides a credible, robustly implemented transition from high cost single turbine demonstration deployments of marine turbines to economically viable multi-hundred turbine arrays in oceans and managed water assets across Europe and the wider global market.
A project, funded by PhD scholarships from the Islamic Development Bank and EPSRC (via the Doctoral Training Grants) is underway looking at the efficiency of meso-scale waste stabilization ponds to treat municipal waste water, with resource recovery from fish farming and selling sludge for fertilizer. The ultimate aim is to demonstrate systems that can be adpoted and run by communities, particularly in urban West Africa. The pilot project is based in Cotonou, Benin.
The hydrodynamic performance of marine devices is crucial from the energy efficiency point of view. A well-designed drag reducing technique for ship hulls would decrease the unsustainable fossil fuel consumption and pollution, which accounts for 3% of the global carbon dioxide emission. The drag experienced by, for instance, a tidal turbine blade, also limits the extractable power from the tidal stream and, therefore, a drag reduction would increase the capacity factor of tidal turbines and decrease the cost of renewable energy. Our research aims to reduce the experienced drag with compliant coatings.
Marine renewable energy has been receiving increasing attention in both political and industrial circles. There has been limited deployment to date, and the industry is only now entering the development phase of the Research, Development, Demonstration and Deployment (RDD&D) process.