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EPSRC FIBE2 CDT PhD studentship with AVEVA and BP: Prioritising interventions in infrastructure design and operations for lower carbon energy assets

This is a four-year (1+3 MRes/PhD) studentship funded through the Cambridge EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Future Infrastructure and Built Environment: Resilience in a Changing World (FIBE2 CDT). The FIBE2 CDT aims to develop the next generation of infrastructure professionals who can create, shape and deliver the national vision for UK infrastructure, who will be equipped with a versatile and cross-disciplinary skill set to meet the most complex emerging challenges and contribute effectively to better infrastructure decision-making in the UK. Further details can be found at

The project is funded in collaboration with AVEVA, a Global Leader in Industrial Software that deliver solutions and expertise to optimize engineering, operations and performance supporting the evolution of the industries and BP, a company that provide heat, light and mobility to customers all over the world, with a purpose to reimagine energy for people and the planet and an ambition to be a net zero company by 2050 or sooner.

Project details: Several companies have recently announced pledges to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Achieving this target will require profound changes in the design and operation of assets. Yet, currently there is little awareness about the greenhouse gas emissions implications from infrastructure design choices that take into consideration materials, fabrication and uncertainties related to how digital technology will impact operations and decommissioning. To what extent can design choices about industrial infrastructure influence future operational emissions? Which parameters should be considered and which should carry the highest weight in decision-making? What trade-offs exist between design for operability and design for minimal emissions?

This project will explore these questions and it has the following research objectives: 1. Compare the relative importance of the various stages of the life cycle of assets in terms of key economic and environmental variables. 2. Explore the impact of alternative interventions in the design, location, operation, material choice, and timeline of deployment in terms of emissions and costs. 3. Explore how design and operation of infrastructure influence the achievement of climate targets. 4. Develop a dynamic tool to assess the whole system impacts of design and operation choices of large scale energy assets. 5. Prioritise interventions and recommendations of future practices for specific case studies.

Informal enquires about this post can be made to Dr André Cabrera Serrenho (

For general enquiries, please email

Applicants should have (or expect to obtain by the start date) at least a good 2.1 degree in a Bachelors or Masters in any engineering or related subject. Relevant industrial experience would be an advantage.

The FIBE2 CDT studentships are fully-funded (fees and maintenance) for eligible students. Further details about eligibility and funding can be found at:

To apply for this studentship, candidates must apply through the University's Graduate Admissions application portal not later than 3 December for a Michaelmas 2021 start. The portal is at: and there is a £70 fee for PhD applications, with 'Prioritising interventions in infrastructure design and operations for lower carbon energy assets' stated on the form and Dr André Cabrera Serrenho identified as the potential supervisor.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.