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The University of Southampton

University of Southampton to address the need for clean energy through research-led education in Chemical Engineering

Published: 12 December 2018
Artist's impression of new labs
New facilities will support the MSc Advanced Chemical Engineering (artist’s impression)

Sustainable technologies and skilled engineers to address the global challenge of a low carbon future will be generated in a new Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of Southampton.

The University is launching a taught MSc programme in Advanced Chemical Engineering in 2019, with plans in motion for an undergraduate MEng programme to start in 2020.

Clean growth is at the heart of the UK Government’s Industrial Strategy and relies on the development, manufacture and use of low carbon technologies, systems and services that cost less than high carbon alternatives.

The new Department of Chemical Engineering will complement the strengths and reputation of the Schools of Chemistry and Engineering, drawing on Southampton’s innovative research in areas such as low-carbon technology, fine chemicals, green energy and water/wastewater engineering.

Professor Gill Reid, Head of Chemistry, says: “In the context of climate change and diminishing natural resources, demand is growing for chemical engineers with the skills to design sustainable technologies and processes. The MSc Advanced Chemical Engineering degree will equip students with the specialist skill set needed to meet this demand. Whether you are looking to build on your undergraduate studies or advance your career, this MSc degree will help you achieve your ambitions.”

The full-time MSc programme includes a Group Design Project, six taught modules and a four-month research project. The course covers the essential areas of chemical engineering, including the computer systems and algorithms that control chemical engineering processes, and safety and risk management.

Specialist modules will enable students to focus on specific themes, such as energy, waste management or high-value chemicals, or broaden their knowledge by taking options on multiple topics. Optional modules also provide the opportunity to learn about cutting-edge fields such as lab-on-a-chip technologies and micro and meso-scale reactors.

Professor David Richards, Head of Engineering, says: “On this one-year MSc degree students will benefit from our academics’ expertise in both subject areas, as well as our strong industry links. Distinctive for its focus on sustainable approaches to chemical engineering, it teaches the design and operation of reactors for low-carbon and energy conversion technologies, enabling you to solve complex engineering problems. You’ll also gain real-world insights by working on a brief set by industry, boosting your employability.”

MSc Advanced Chemical Engineering students will benefit from an upcoming £12m investment in Chemistry facilities and have the opportunity to make use of specialist research facilities such as Boldrewood Innovation Campus and the £120m cleanroom complex.

The University is currently undertaking a world-wide search for the inaugural Head of Chemical Engineering.

Professor Bashir Al-Hashimi, Dean of Faculty, Engineering and Physical Sciences, says: “Southampton is a centre for outstanding research and education in engineering and chemistry and this places the University in a unique position for developing a first-class Department of Chemical Engineering that will compete on the international stage; delivering research-led education that attracts high achieving students with significant impact on a global scale.”


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