Built Environment and Transport: Developing sustainable zero-carbon solutions for the future

The built environment is at once a great human achievement and an ongoing and increasingly difficult challenge, as we juggle comfort and convenience with the impact on our natural and social environment. As we become more sensitive and aware of our impact, the role of the chemical engineer becomes more significant and visible to achieve the sustainable development goal and reduce carbon and heat.

As humans live increasingly concentrated in towns and cities, we influence our surroundings in myriad ways, from air, light, noise, water, and visual pollution to municipal waste and wastewater. Our lifestyle impacts the soil, waterways, and coastlines, and our industrial waste sometimes results in major disasters.

In this context, safety and sustainability have now become central ideals when creating built environments and transport networks. The challenge rests in how to achieve this while maintaining equitable access, reliability, and economic and environmental sustainability over the long term.

Decarbonising heavy vehicles are not quite as advanced, with the weight and size of batteries limiting the potential of electric trucks. Chemical engineers continue to investigate alternative fuels, including their safe and economical manufacture.

The webinar panel discussed how Chemical Engineers of the future will contribute to addressing the major challenges for the liveable future modern(smart) cities and Built Environment. It also discussed how Chemical Engineers of the future will contribute towards decarbonisation of the Transport Sector.

Watch the webinar recording here

Date: 10 August 2022 
Time: 08:30 am (BST)

Our Panel Members:

Nasrin Aghamohammadi (Chair) - University of Malaya, Malaysia 

Nasrin is an Associate Professor in the Department of Social and Preventive Medicine, University of Malay, Malaysia. Her core expertise is in environmental health engineering, air pollution, climate change adaptation, the urban heat island phenomenon, and health impact. With an extensive background in pure and applied research as well as an engineering background, Nasrin has a wide range of experience in projects involving air, water, wastewater, solid waste, and related health issues. Currently, she heads the Unit for Occupational and Environmental Health at University of Malaya. She is an associate editor for the Sustainable Cities and Society journal, the guest editor for Energy and Buildings journal as well as an editorial member for various peer review journals. Outside of her work commitments, Nasrin has devoted her time as Chair of the ChemEng Evolution Built Environment and Transport theme, planning several technical and development events to promote sustainable practices.

Professor Nilay Shah - Imperial College London

Nilay Shah is the former Head of the Department of Chemical Engineering at Imperial, and a Chemical Engineer by training. He has co-authored over 300 technical papers on process systems modelling and engineering, with applications to chemical, biochemical and energy systems as well as the built environment and urban systems. He is particularly interested in the transfer of technology from academia to industry. He has provided consultancy services on process optimisation, innovation and industrial applications of new technology to a large number of process industry and energy companies.

Claire Miller  - Octopus Electric Vehicles

Claire Miller is Director of Technology and Innovation at Octopus Electric Vehicles (OEV), part of the Octopus Energy Group. Claire is passionate about solving real world problems, delivering new technologies to market and, most importantly, into the hands of users to make a positive impact on the world around us. She works at the cutting edge of EV adoption, energy tech, and the smart connected grid, including the Powerloop vehicle to grid (V2G) project which she led from January 2019. Claire has a Masters in Mechanical Engineering from Imperial College London. In 2022 she has been recognised as one of the 30 leaders 'most likely to usher the automotive industry to its electrified future' by Business Insider, and a 'Top Woman in EV' in Technology by the EV Summit

Professor Steven Dunn - London South Bank University

Prof Steven Dunn is the Associate Dean for Research Enterprise, School of Engineering at London South Bank University and Professor of Materials Engineering. He has published over 140 articles in journals such as Advanced Materials and Energy and Environmental Science. His research interests include developing fundamental understanding and developing ceramics to enhance chemical reactions with a focus on reducing the energy required to produce sustainable fuels and chemicals. He is currently working on processing of low Currie temperature ferroelectric materials, modifying the surface of ferroelectric materials with oxygen and hydrogen evolution catalysts as well as novel ways to form carbonaceous nanostructured islands. His other research interests include finding new applications for functional materials and in the sustainable use of materials for energy storage and generation.

Dr Suela Kellici - London South Bank University

Dr Suela Kellici (SK) is an Associate Professor in Materials Engineering and the Head for London Centre for Energy Engineering at the School of Engineering, London South Bank University (LSBU). She is an expert in clean synthetic technologies and materials engineering with a focus on producing high-quality advanced functional materials (www.nano2d.co.uk) with applications in energy related areas (energy storage and production such as green fuel) and environmental. Among the awards she has received for her work are Research Project Finalist (Using water for next generation of 2D materials) in 2020 IChemE Global Awards, Early Career Scientific Achievement award (Staff Award 2017, LSBU), 1st prize in the "Materials Innovation for the 21st Century" and the “Increased Manufacturing Value” (ChemEngDayUK 2014, University of Manchester), for her work on the synthesis of graphene.

Titi Oliyide -Supercritical Solutions Limited

Titi is a Chemical Engineer with a background in chemical and process systems engineering. Titi has combined her work and studies with several volunteer tutoring and mentoring positions that have helped to underpin the development of science, chemistry and mathematics skills in secondary school students.

Jim Briggs - Poten Partners Inc

Jim is an advisor with Poten’s natural gas & LNG consulting group based in London. In the past 30 years, he has led numerous consulting assignments on LNG and natural gas projects, particularly concerning the development of natural gas resources. Formerly he was the global manager of Poten’s consulting group. He is a highly experienced consultant in all aspects of the oil and gas business. Previously Jim was the head of Nexant's Global Petroleum and Chemical Consulting Division. Prior to the formation of Nexant, he was the Regional Manager of Bechtel Consulting, covering Europe, Africa, Middle East and Africa. Prior to Bechtel, he managed a biogas company and earlier was a staff member of the Commonwealth Secretariat managing industrial aid projects. Jim is a Sloan Fellow of the London Business School and graduate from Imperial College, London in Chemical Engineering (BSc) and Materials Technology (MSc). He is a Chartered Engineer, Fellow of the Institution of Chemical Engineers.