Energy Storage and its Applications

The ground-breaking Centre for Doctoral Training in Energy Storage and its Applications at the Universities of Sheffield and Southampton opened in October 2014, funded by the EPSRC, to tackle industrial challenges and develop new technologies and skills that will enable the UK to meet its low carbon targets.

2014 cohort biogs

Ian Brocklebank

MEng Chemical Engineering

Sheffield cohort

At every possible opportunity in my undergraduate course I took environmental based modules and developed an interest in the impact that our society has on the planet. My two main projects looked into improving the efficiency of a series of heat exchangers and sterilizing hospital waste. I chose to do this CDT as I wanted to use my engineering abilities to help tackle climate change.

Thomas Bryden

MEng Mechanical Engineering

Southampton cohort

 After graduating from Warwick University with a Masters in Mechanical Engineering I worked for 3 years in the Subsea Engineering industry. I worked on a variety of projects from designing offshore pipelines for installation in Africa to maintaining the integrity of offshore pipelines in the UK. I enjoyed my work, however in the future my aim is to work on long term research based projects. I therefore joined the ESA CDT and am excited to be conducting research in a field of such high importance that will expand greatly in the future.

Andreas Georgakarakos

MEng Mechanical Engineering, MSc Environmental Engineering

Sheffield cohort


Having acquired a broad introduction to energy issues from my previous degrees, I got extremely interested in Renewable and Sustainable Energy Technologies, as a way to promote and achieve a carbon free economy. Realising how important energy storage is in this direction and that the current technologies are inefficient, I decided to join the ESA-CDT to face the current energy challenges. Other academic interests include air pollution, climate change, biofuels and water engineering. Having passion for research and production of new knowledge since my undergraduate years, I am excited to be a part of the CDT.

George Hilton

MEng Mechanical Engineering with Advanced Materials 

Southampton cohort

I applied to join the CDT programme because I am passionate about modernizing the energy industry in order to reduce carbon emissions. Effective energy storage is one of the major challenges which faces this industry and the chance working in this exciting and turbulent field is what drives me. My undergraduate degree is in mechanical engineering with advanced materials so I am hoping to apply my knowledge to and bring a different perspective to my research. 

Alex Holland

MPhys Physics 

Southampton cohort

Between my 3rd and 4th years I spent 8 weeks at the National Physical Laboratory characterising the electrical properties of graphene hall devices for sensing purposes. Throughout my degree I became increasingly interested in the energy and environmental issues that we face as a modern society. I therefore jumped at the opportunity to join the Energy Storage CDT where I can further understand the energy issues we face and hopefully contribute to future energy solutions.

Richard Johnson

MChem Chemistry

Sheffield cohort


After graduating, I began working for GE Water & Process Technologies as an analyst, but quickly found myself eager to return to the world of science. As a keen electronics and programming hobbyist with interests in technical design, I felt that I may be more suited to a career in engineering than in pure science. I joined the CDT Energy Storage with the aim of developing into a professional engineer with the ability to make an impact on world energy storage technology.

Carl Kennedy

MPhys Physics with Mathematics

Sheffield cohort

I became motivated to work in the renewable energy sector during my third year undergraduate project `assessing the technical feasibility of a patent for a new solar energy technology’. Following this, for my final year project I chose to investigate the performance of UK domestic photovoltaic installations. When I came across the Energy storage CDT, I knew it would be the perfect start to my career. It provides me with the opportunity to learn about core energy storage technologies before I decide in which specific area I would like to focus my research. Energy storage is one of the key factors enabling the move towards utilisation of renewable energy sources and I hope to make a significant contribution to the development of future technologies.

Nina Meddings

MSci Materials Science 

Southampton cohort

Having previously worked at the UK Committee on Climate Change, undertaking techno-economic research on options to reduce the UK’s carbon emissions, I was looking for a new challenge and keen to use my background in materials science to contribute in a more practical way. Given the essential role for energy storage in moving to a low-carbon economy (from grid-level storage for balancing intermittent renewable generation, to light and low-cost batteries for electric vehicles) and the interesting materials challenges involved, the opportunity to join the CDT was perfect. I’m looking forward to carrying out an industrially-relevant research project which brings energy storage closer to competing with traditional energy sources.

James Moore 

MEng Chemical Engineering

Sheffield cohort

My interests in energy and related disciplines were piqued upon learning the basics of energy in secondary school and further at the University of Sheffield where I have completed a Master’s degree in Chemical Engineering. I had a particular interest in power production and studied these modules and found that a stable, reliable energy mix for the future which significantly includes renewable power will require reliable energy storage methods for a stable National Grid. Having been presented a perfect opportunity to research in this area at my alma-mater, I hope to form an important part of helping balance the UK’s energy production for the foreseeable future.

Connor Smyth

MEng Chemical Engineering

Sheffield cohort

A low carbon economy is a must for the future, but without efficient and cost-effective means to store energy it seems likely that the planet will continue to rely on viable, yet ever-diminishing natural resources. Therefore, research into energy storage is of the utmost importance in regards to addressing and counteracting climate change. The majority of electricity currently utilised by the UK is generated as required and the storage of surplus energy is not implemented. Innovation into energy storage systems is the key to reducing our carbon footprint and I strongly believe that government funded programmes such as this one are the key to that innovation. 

Dan Wright

BSc Chemistry, MSc/MCSM European Mineral Engineering

Southampton cohort

I decided to join the CDT in Energy Storage as I wanted to work within such a rapidly expanding and important area of current research. I have backgrounds in both chemistry and minerals engineering and have held jobs in both the oil industry and mining industry. My past jobs include working for Shell Global Solutions researching friction reducing fuel additives. Atacama Minerals Chile researching the modelling and optimisation of iodine leaching operations. I have spent the last couple of years as a Metallurgist for SGS Minerals Services running lab scale mineral processing projects. I am particularly interested in working in research and development into new battery technologies.