PhD scholarship in Biogas Upgrading (CO2 Capture) Simulation through Experimental Work and Thermodynamic Modelling

Center for Energy Resources Engineering (CERE), Department of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering, Technical University of Denmark (DTU) seeks a PhD to support our BioCO2 project. The proposed work will be conducted in collaboration between DTU Chemical Engineering and the project partners: Union Engineering and Danish Gas Technology Center. The position is for a period of 3 years.

Denmark has a great need to substitute our declining North Sea gas production by cleaner alternative fuels. We have a current potential to substitute 10% of our oil, gas, and coal usage by sustainable biogas. Biogas is produced from biological resources like manure and wastewater sludge. Untreated, it typically contains 30% to 40% CO
2 and impurities. Biogas can be upgraded to bio-methane, which permits distribution through the natural gas grid. However, in this process CO2 is produced and emitted into the atmosphere.

Responsibilities and tasks
The aim of your project will be to develop a simulation engine, which will further be used in the BioCO2 project by your colleges for process design, simulation, and optimization. You will expand existing DTU software for this purpose.

The development will include a new DTU solvent technology, which has proven to give reduced energy consumption during solvent regeneration. In this technology maturation, you will apply an existing DTU solvent methodology. In order to perform the software development you will need to extend existing thermodynamic models and conduct measurements in the lab in relation to CO2 solvent properties (VLE, SLE, heat of absorption etc).

One of your final tasks will be to initialize Aspen Plus process simulation in close collaboration with Union Engineering and a colleague at DTU, who are experienced within the same field of technology.

Your responsibilities will include sub-reporting for the funding agencies.

Objective and purpose of the project
The purpose of the project is to create and demonstrate a financially viable technology, which will enable the upgrading of biogas to natural gas grid quality and simultaneously permit the reuse of the CO2 for other purposes, such as synthetic biofuel and food.

Project contents
The task will be to gain experience from existing thermodynamic and experimental knowhow at DTU. You will gain knowledge from other researchers working in the same field of technology development. You are expected to apply existing knowledge from DTU and succeed in developing a rate-based model for process simulation.

Relation to other projects
You will be a member of the CERE research group. You will be working in close collaboration with Associate Professors Philip Fosbøl & Kaj Thomsen in your daily work. You can draw on years of experience and knowledge on CO2capture technologies. The software basis you will develop further for this project is already available. Your project is one within a publicly funded framework called BioCO2.


Candidates should have a two-year master’s degree (120 ECTS points) or a similar degree with an academic level equivalent to a two-year master’s degree. There will be a focus on your experience with programming, thermodynamics, and chemical property measurements in the lab – and on the number of publications you have created.

Approval and Enrolment
The scholarship for the PhD degree is subject to academic approval, and the candidate will be enrolled in one of the general degree programmes at DTU. For information about our enrolment requirements and the general planning of the PhD study programme, please see the DTU PhD Guide.

The assessment of the applicants will be made by Associate Professors Philip L. Fosbøl and Kaj Thomsen.

We offer
DTU is a leading technical university globally recognized for the excellence of its research, education, innovation and scientific advice. We offer a rewarding and challenging job in an international environment. We strive for academic excellence in an environment characterized by collegial respect and academic freedom tempered by responsibility.

Salary and appointment terms
The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. The allowance will be agreed upon with the relevant union. The period of employment is 3 years.

You can read more about career paths at DTU here.

Further information

Further information may be obtained from Associate Professor Philip Fosbøl,

You can read more about DTU Chemical Engineering on


Please submit your online application no later than 18 March 2019 (local time). To apply, please open the link “Apply online”, fill out the online application form. The following must be attached in English:

  • A letter motivating the application (cover letter)
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma
  • Excel sheet with translation of grades to the Danish grading system (see guidelines and Excel spreadsheet here)
  • Any relevant sections of publications which you find important to the application (max 20 pages)
Candidates may apply prior to obtaining their master’s degree but cannot begin before having received it.

Applications and enclosures received after the deadline will not be considered.

All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, race, disability, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.

DTU is a technical university providing internationally leading research, education, innovation and scientific advice. Our staff of 6,000 advance science and technology to create innovative solutions that meet the demands of society, and our 11,200 students are being educated to address the technological challenges of the future. DTU is an independent academic university collaborating globally with business, industry, government and public agencies.

Apply for this job

Apply no later than 18 March 2019
Apply for the job at DTU Chemical Eng. by completing the following form.

Apply online

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