Research Associate in Recovery of Reactive Nitrogen
A 3 year, fixed-term Research Associate appointment is available in the School of Engineering at the University of Edinburgh to work as part of the UKRI GCRF South Asian Nitrogen Hub. This multidisciplinary Hub is formed by 32 leading research organisations.
The objective of the work package is to develop novel solutions based on adsorption separation processes for the recovery of reactive nitrogen (for example ammonia, NOX) from dilute streams in close collaboration with colleagues in the Hub who will develop novel nanoporous materials to be evaluated for such separations.
The successful candidate will be responsible for all aspects of the project associated with the simulation and optimisation of the adsorption processes for the recovery of reactive nitrogen. The novel nanoporous materials will be characterised using various techniques, including volumetric and zero-length column systems, in order to provide a range of physical parameters needed to predict process performance. This should provide a sound basis to compare different approaches to the recovery of reactive nitrogen.
The successful candidate for this position should have a PhD in Chemical Engineering or other relevant field and have extensive experience in process optimisation.
The post is offered on a full time basis for a fixed term of 3 years.
Salary UE07 £33,797 to £40,322 pa.
Closing date 5pm (GMT) on 12th October 2020.
1. Job Details
Job title: Research Associate in Recovery of Reactive Nitrogen
School: School of Engineering
Unit: Institute for Materials and Processes
Line manager: Prof Stefano Brandani
2. Job Purpose
This Research Associate position will contribute to the GCRF South Asian Nitrogen Hub within the Institute for Materials and Processes at the University of Edinburgh, which is funded by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and in collaboration with colleagues at 32 leading research organisations: see
3. Main Responsibilities
- Undertake research related to recovery of reactive nitrogen, i.e. ammonia and NOX compounds at high dilution. This will entail both independent research work and working in collaboration with other researchers on the GCRF South Asian Nitrogen Hub. The successful candidate will proactively engage with collaborating researchers to identify fruitful lines of research in this area, with a view to understanding, defining and quantifying. (60%)
- Dissemination of research findings through internal reports, conference proceedings and journal publications. (15%)
- Liaison with and support of colleagues on the UKRI funded GCRF South Asian Nitrogen Hub possibly including domestic and international travel and support of meetings at the University of Edinburgh and venues of the meetings of the Hub. (10%)
- Develop plans for personal research and contribute to wider development of group strategy to identify and agree priorities for current and future work. (5%)
- Contribute to writing bids to win ongoing research grants. Provide guidance to other staff and students interested in integrating methods/results from this work into their own activity to ensure most effective use particularly within the University of Edinburgh and members of the Hub. (10%)
4. Planning and Organising
• Work with the line manager to define and plan a programme of relevant research work and then to produce publishable results within appropriate timescales.
• Work independently to plan the schedule of tasks to ensure that work of the projects progresses according to agreed overall timetable.
• Organise own time so that different aspects of the project can proceed in parallel giving due consideration to the needs of other members of the team.
• Be proactive in interacting with project partners to share data and ideas.
• Take a leadership role in regular project meetings to report and review progress and to generate new ideas and lines of research.
• Determine the aims, objectives and deadlines for short to medium term work plan, in discussion with the Line Manager (particularly for medium term planning).
• Contribute to long-term strategic planning and development of group activities, in discussion with the Line Manager and other researchers.
5. Problem Solving
• Be resourceful in overcoming problems encountered in the development of new approaches and the implementation of existing techniques in the normal course of the research.
• Define the methodology to solve the problems in the project.
• Work in close co-operation with the other project investigators, project partners, technical staff and PhD students working on the project to resolve problems, as required.
6. Decision Making
• The post-holder should be able to organise their work schedule to ensure satisfactory progress and to meet the demands (where realistic) of other project partners, PhD students, etc. The successful candidate will play an important role as a member of the team in making daily decisions about their own plan of work and the allocation of time and resources.
• Manage day-to-day work load, making independent decisions about immediate priorities to meet short and medium term targets that have been agreed with Line Manager.
7. Key Contacts/Relationships
Frequent (daily to weekly) contact with other researchers in the project team and relevant research groups including academic staff, other researchers and PhD students.
Regular (weekly to monthly) contact with other researchers working on relevant problems in the University of Edinburgh.
Regular (typically monthly) contact with key stakeholders, likely to include industry.
8. Knowledge, Skills and Experience Needed for the Job
• A good undergraduate degree and a PhD in Chemical Engineering or a clearly related area with a focus on adsorption separations, or a closely related area.
• Proven track record of research in modelling and experimental validation of adsorption separation processes, with a specific focus the use of novel nanoporous materials or a closely related area.
• Experience in multi-objective optimisation of adsorption processes.
• Experience in delivering research project results; i.e. a record of peer-reviewed journal and conference papers in a relevant area.
• Capable of working collaboratively with researchers from different disciplines or technical background.
• Capable of working independently, exercising a high degree of initiative and demonstrating a pro-active and flexible approach to work.
• Ability to work under pressure and meet agreed milestones.
• Ability to develop and maintain effective working relationships.
• Good time-keeping and time-management with associated effective prioritisation of tasks.
• Good communication skills; oral, writing and presentation of data.
• Ability to contribute ideas and initiate new ways of working.
• Ability to be adaptive and accepting of new ideas and a willingness to approach new challenges and adjusts plans to meet new priorities.
• Experience in the determination of the physical parameters needed to model adsorption processes.
• Experience in using C/C++ in scientific and engineering programming.
• Potential to help supervise up to 2 PhD students and 2-4 Masters project students.
• Work collaboratively with other RA's, industrial and academic partners, PhD students from the participating and related groups and researchers from other universities.
• Responsibility for regular progress reporting to project partners.
• Keep line manager up-to-date with progress.
• Contribute to interactions between immediate group and broader communities that are part of the UKRI GCRF South Asian Nitrogen Hub.
All applicants should apply online by clicking the apply link at the bottom of this page via our Vacancy Website and submitting an up to date CV. The application process is quick and easy to follow, and you will receive email confirmation of safe receipt of your application. The online system allows you to submit a CV and other attachments. Closing date is 5pm on 12th October 2020.
Right to Work
In accordance with the Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Act 2006 and Immigration Act 2016 the University of Edinburgh, as an employer, has a legal responsibility to prevent illegal working and therefore must check that all employees are entitled to work in the United Kingdom (UK).
To do so, the University requires to see original documents evidencing right to work in the UK before commencement of employment and this is normally carried out at interview. Details will be provided in any letter of invitation to interview.
For further information on right to work please visit our right to work webpage
If you are from outside the EEA and not currently eligible to work in the UK, there are visa routes that may be available to you, for example:
- Global Talent: If you are an academic, researcher or technical specialist in the field of sciences; humanities; engineering; medicine; digital technology; or the arts, it may be possible for you to apply for a Global Talent visa. This route requires you to apply to be endorsed as an internationally recognised leader or emerging leader in your particular field by an endorsing body (Arts Council England, British Academy, Royal Academy of Engineering, Royal Society, Tech Nation, UK Research and Innovation (UKRI)). However, if you are applying for a senior academic role, e.g. Professor/Reader there is an accelerated route to endorsement. Further information can be found on the UKVI website
- Tier 2: The University is a UKVI licensed sponsor and is able to issue a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) to successful candidates who are offered highly skilled roles and meet the eligibility criteria. The CoS enables candidates to apply for a Tier 2 (general visa).
Please note if you were last granted leave to stay in the UK in any Tier 2 category in the 12 months immediately preceding an application and the leave has
• ended or expired.
• the CoS which led to that grant of leave was issued for more than 3 months, and
• you are either:
o applying for entry clearance from outside the UK, or
o you are in the UK and had a previous period of Tier 2 leave, but then changed ('switched') into a different immigration category and now wishes to apply again under Tier 2.
You must wait 12 months before applying again.
Further information about whether you require a visa and other visa routes can be found at:
Conditions of Employment
This role is grade UE07 and therefore the post holder is automatically included in membership of the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS), subject to the USS membership criteria, unless they indicate that they choose not to join the Scheme.
For further information please visit our Pensions website .
The role is grade UE07 and attracts an annual salary of £33,797 to £40,322 for 35 hours each week. Salary is paid monthly by direct transfer to your Bank or Building Society account, normally on the 28th of the month. Salaries for part-time staff are calculated on the full-time scales, pro-rata to the Standard Working Week.
The University reserves the right to vary the candidate information or make no appointment at all. Neither in part, nor in whole does this information form part of any contract between the University and any individual.
var links = document.querySelectorAll(".targetLink"), i, j, aTags, string; for(i=0; i The School of Engineering The School of Engineering addresses diverse complex challenges across the entire field of engineering, at the micro- and macro/global scales. At the microscopic scale, its research supports the design and deployment of novel nanotechnology and devices for biological monitoring and medical diagnosis; at the macro/global scale, it optimises the security and sustainability of the built environment and develops engineering solutions to climate change issues. In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework, the School's joint submission with Heriot-Watt University was first in the UK in research power (662) with 94% of our research activity achieving world-leading (4*) or internationally excellent (3*) ratings. The School has a strong track record in producing more than 50 technology spin-outs and developing industry links that enable our graduates to build career-long relationships. Current research grant awards total over £75M with new awards in 2017-2018 totalling £27.5 M.
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