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Research Fellow

School of Engineering

Location:  Highfield Campus
Salary:   £30,395 to £37,345
Full Time, Fixed Term (12 months)
Closing Date:  Wednesday 26 June 2019
Interview Date:   To be confirmed
Reference:  1149619DA

Research Fellow – EPSRC Grant “Optimisation of Energy Storage Systems to support Fault Ride Through”

 “Joint UK-India Clean Energy Centre (JUICE) – Flexible Funding Award”

You will join the Mechanical Engineering Department at the University of Southampton as part of an innovative project focussed on developing the energy storage, solar photovoltaic (PV) and smart grid integration within the UK and Indian systems. These two countries have seen very rapid installation of PV since both countries introduced their respective market stimulation programmes which has had a very significant impact on the power system and may endanger quality of supply or grid reliability. JUICE will focus on tools to understand and quantify the associated issues, find the most economical way to ameliorate or control the issues generated.

This positions will start on 1st July 2019 (to be discussed). This Research Council funded consortium, entitled “Joint UK-India Clean Energy Centre (JUICE)”, is led by the University of Loughborough and includes the Universities of Warwick, Exeter, Cardiff, Birmingham, Manchester, Swansea, Imperial College London and the University of Southampton (UoS) as partners. Specifically this activity will involve Cardiff University (CU) and IIT Kharagpur (IIT-Kgp), in India.

With ever increasing penetrations of solar PV (photovoltaic) generation into existing electrical smart grids, the coordinated control and response of such embedded generation to aid the stability, power quality and fault behaviour is now of critical importance. Revised electrical connection standards now mandate fault ride through capabilities for such generation. In parallel, the integration of further solar PV into these networks increasingly includes an energy storage (typically battery) system, to help utilise the solar energy locally and regulate reverse power flows and local voltage rise issues. This project therefore, focusses on optimising the use of these local energy storage assets to assist in the fault ride through (FRT) capability and performance of the solar PV

You will take a day-to-day lead on delivering against the key research challenges of developing the FRT capability:

  • University of Southampton will define, develop and test the methodology to determine the rating and type of energy store that can assist deliver standard compliant FRT. This will be undertaken in partnership with associated activities ongoing at IIT-Kgp to explore the detection of FRT events and testing within the IIT-Kgp dc microgrid.
  • in collaboration with IIT-Kgp, continue development of modelling of the dc microgrid at IIT-Kgp and UoS (that includes solar PV, energy storage and appropriate dc/ac loads), with the integration of energy stores across a range of fault types (ac and dc side). Targets are conformance with FRT standards whilst using the minimum (or site specific existing) energy storage capacity.
  • initial concepts from previous work activities will be applied to RTDS modelling of MV-FRT systems for larger multi-MW scale solar PV systems and converters. This activity will be supported by exchange visits between the UoS and CU researchers to further develop, test and report (with a view to joint publications on findings) modelling outcomes.
  • you will visit IIT-Kgp for two, 2 week periods in months 1 & 7/8. This will facilitate strong initial personal contact between researchers and clear induction into the FRT and microgrid modelling activities. A latter visit in month 7 or 8 provides both the focus and opportunity to deliver initial converter prototypes, test these units and begin drafting of joint test reports and publications.
  • a project final report will be delivered. The final outcomes, in the form of the methodology that optimises the energy storage (ES) type and capacity required to deliver the required FRT performance, will be disseminated via appropriate publications, videos of working prototypes and intellectual property protection by the generating party. Delivery of these outputs to the overall JUICE partners will be undertaken at a convenient time.

To be successful it is essential you have a PhD or equivalent professional qualifications and experience in electrical energy storage, power electronics or renewable energy systems, and will be able to evidence an interest in smart grids and renewable energy systems. It is anticipated the ideal candidate will have an UG degree in Electrical Engineering or other Engineering/Maths related discipline. A keen interest in energy storage or solar photovoltaic/smart grid technology and a good working understanding and knowledge of power electronics, hardware, software and control, including both simulation and hardware implementation, is essential. As a consortium project, you will be required to liaise with other relevant partners regarding aspects of this work and plan and manage consortium demonstration activities as well as local prototypes. You will be required to travel to present at project meetings and workshops in the UK, India, national and international conferences, and assist with the production of project report and management documentation. 

If you wish to discuss any details of the project informally, please contact Prof Andrew Cruden, Energy Technology Research Group, Email: A.J.Cruden@soton.ac.uk, Tel: +44 (0) 2380 59 7660.

More details can be found at:

http://www.southampton.ac.uk/engineering/research/groups/energy_technology.page

Application Procedure

You should submit your completed online application form at https://jobs.soton.ac.uk. The application deadline will be midnight on the closing date stated above. If you need any assistance, please call Geraldine Lewis (Recruitment Team) on +44 (0) 23 8059 3462. Please quote reference 1149619DA on all correspondence.

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We aim to be an equal opportunities employer and welcome applications from all sections of the community. Please note that applications from agencies will not be accepted unless indicated in the job advert.


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