Pre-requisites: CHEM2026 and CHEM2032
Aims and Objectives
Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:
- Discuss how energy and chemical feedstocks can be sustainably sourced from either coal or biomass
- Review the availability of alternate solvents and make informed choices based on Chemistry principles
- Assess the likely sustainability of medium and large scale chemical and energy related processes.
- Discuss possible methods of reducing CO2 emissions and analyse their respective merits
- Rationalise the availability and utilisation of renewable feedstocks and their influence on energy efficiency and the environment
- Understand the chemistry of nuclear power generation, and extraction of metals
- Evaluate the role of CO2 and other greenhouse gases in climate change, and be able to reproduce a simple atmospheric model
- Elucidate the nature of catalytic processes and their impact in the context of Green Chemistry (E-factor, atom efficiency, F3 factory).
- Discuss the role of porous architectures in the context of driving selectivity in chemical transformations.
1) Energy and materials demands on natural resources – population and economic growth. Assessment of energy demand and supply. Carbon and nitrogen cycles. Peak Oil. Medium term sustainability. Climate change and climate modelling.
2) Mainstream inorganic materials: eg. Iron and aluminium. Chemistry of manufacture. Energy and resource consequences.
3) Materials for renewable energy production:
a) Nuclear energy. Actinide availability and chemistry patterns. Nuclear fuel. Materials for nuclear energy production.
b) Carbon capture and storage with coal, and C1 feedstock chemistry from syngas
c) Photovoltaics and other alternative energy sources. Silicon manufacture from sand. Semiconductors for photo-electric effect. Alternatives to silicon. Conducting glasses.
d) Energy and feedstocks from Biomass
e) Balancing renewable variability with energy storage options
4) Green versus sustainable chemistry: Principles & legislation; Atom economy, E factor, F3 factory; Reaction efficiency and selectivity; Waste: problems and prevention; Safety and toxicity; Role of catalysis.
5) Methods and tools for sustainable chemistry: Ionic/fluorous liquids; Supercritical solvents; Bio-inspired, biomimetic and biocatalysis; Homogeneous & heterogeneous catalysis; Porous materials – synthesis characterisation and applications; Photocatalysis; Process intensification; Solvent-free systems.
6) Renewable resources: Syngas and hydrogen economy; Biomass and hybrid biofuels; Chemicals from renewable feedstocks; Alternatives to fossil fuels; Chemistry using microwaves.
7) Designing sustainable processes – selected industrial case studies: Propylene oxide; Nylon production; Biodiesel; Vitamin B3; Polyethylene.
Learning and Teaching
Teaching and learning methods
Lectures, problem-solving workshops with group working, Presentations and Report writing
|Practical classes and workshops||4|
|Completion of assessment task||40|
|Preparation for scheduled sessions||40|
|Total study time||150|
Resources & Reading list
N. Armaroli and V Balzani (2011). Energy for a sustainable World. Wiley VCH.
D.J.C. MacKay (2009). Sustainable energy – without the hot air. UIT Cambridge Ltd.
M. Lancaster (2010). Green chemistry – an introductory text. RSC Publishing.
J. T Houghton (2009). Global warming: the complete briefing. Cambridge University Press.
P. T. Anastas and T. C. Williamson (1998). Green chemistry – frontiers in benign chemical synthesis and processes. Oxford University Press.
N.E. Carpenter (2014). Chemistry of sustainable energy. CRC Press.
This is how we’ll formally assess what you have learned in this module.
This is how we’ll assess you if you don’t meet the criteria to pass this module.
Repeat type: Internal & External