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Projects: Projects for Investigator
Reference Number EP/L003309/1
Title Closed loop optimisation for sustainable chemical manufacture
Status Completed
Energy Categories Not Energy Related 75%;
Energy Efficiency(Industry) 25%;
Research Types Basic and strategic applied research 50%;
Applied Research and Development 50%;
Science and Technology Fields PHYSICAL SCIENCES AND MATHEMATICS (Chemistry) 50%;
ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY (Chemical Engineering) 50%;
UKERC Cross Cutting Characterisation Not Cross-cutting 100%
Principal Investigator Professor RJ Whitby
No email address given
School of Chemistry
University of Southampton
Award Type Standard
Funding Source EPSRC
Start Date 01 October 2013
End Date 30 March 2016
Duration 30 months
Total Grant Value £973,523
Industrial Sectors Chemicals
Region South East
Programme Manufacturing : Physical Sciences
Investigators Principal Investigator Professor RJ Whitby , School of Chemistry, University of Southampton (99.996%)
  Other Investigator Dr A Lapkin , School of Engineering, University of Warwick (0.001%)
Dr A Nordon , Pure and Applied Chemistry, University of Strathclyde (0.001%)
Dr FC Langbein , Computer Science, Cardiff University (0.001%)
Professor D Woods , Statistical Sciences Research institute, University of Southampton (0.001%)
  Industrial Collaborator Project Contact , Syngenta (0.000%)
Project Contact , Cyclofluidic Limited (0.000%)
Project Contact , GSK (0.000%)
Web Site
Abstract The overall aim of the proposed research is to enable the development and operation of new, agile, more cost-effective and sustainable chemical manufacturing processes.The future of sustainable chemicals manufacturing is in flexible, modular and intensive processes. New automated reaction tools and hardware are becoming ubiquitous but optimisation of how they are used and the methods of dealing with the larger amounts of experimental data available are still largely manual processes, and generally only carried out for long duration production runs. A crucial missing component is a fast automated closed-loop methodology for development and running of optimised chemicals manufacturing processes.This proposal will close this gap by developing an automated system for experimentation that brings together automated hardware for reaction execution, methods for reaction composition data acquisition and analysis, the intelligent selection of future experiments, and the development of process models in real-time. The multi-disciplinary challenge of this topic requires research in a variety of fields, including chemistry, statistics, engineering, chemometrics and computer science. Each of the individual research questions are novel and substantial challenges in their own right; their fusion will allow the automatic optimisation of reaction chemistry for a variety of applications and on a variety of different scales. Such a system would become a key tool in both academic and industrial chemistry, making feasible the routine manufacture of even small amounts of material via optimised processes, and increasing the efficiency of processes on all scales. Hence, it has the potential to enable new ways of working towards sustainable and green chemistry
Publications (none)
Final Report (none)
Added to Database 29/10/13