M.Sc. by research/PhD position (funded): GHG emissions from on-site wastewater treatment systems (TCD, Ireland)

  • jankn
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M.Sc. by research/PhD position (funded): GHG emissions from on-site wastewater treatment systems (TCD, Ireland)

Hi there!

The following opportunity just opened up here at the Department of Civil, Structural, and Environmental Engineering at Trinity College Dublin, the University of Dublin (TCD).

A M.Sc. research student is sought for a 2 year study into the quantification of emission of greenhouse gases (GHGs) from on-site wastewater treatment systems. The research objectives are:
  • Measurement of on-site production of GHGs within treatment units (septic tanks and packaged treatment systems)
  • Measurement of on-site production of GHGs from percolation areas receiving septic tank effluent and secondary treated effluent
  • Development of a numerical model of the process for future predictions
An outstanding student with interests in contaminant hydrology and climate change is required. Applicants should have a strong motivation for field research and also be able to demonstrate ability in numerical modelling. Applicants should hold a first class honours degree in Earth Science or Engineering or equivalent. The researcher will be based within the Department of Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering at Trinity College Dublin. The project includes a tax-free stipend of €18,000 per annum and EU level fees. Note that applicants must have been resident in an EU member state for 3 out of the last 5 years to be eligible for EU fees. The studentship is due to start as soon as possible in 2015. Note, although the initial period of research is for 2 years, it is expected that the candidate will extend the study towards a PhD qualification with an extra one to two years of additional research. The project is funded under the Science Foundation Ireland’s ERC Development Programme.

If you are interested in the position, you will find contact information and requirements for your application in the file attached to this post or in the advertising that can be found here: www.tcd.ie/Engineering/assets/pdf/EnvironmentalEngineeringResearchPosition.pdf

The closing date for applications is Friday, 21st August 2015.

For more information, feel free to reply to this post or contact me at jan.knappe(at)tcd.ie or the PI mentioned in the advertisement.

Cheers
/Jan

Jan Knappe

Doctoral Researcher on environmental performance assessment and modeling of on-site wastewater treatment systems
Trinity College Dublin & University of Limerick
Email: jan.knappe(at)tcd.ie, Twitter: @JanKnappe

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  • MissNkhosi
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Re: M.Sc. by research/PhD position (funded): GHG emissions from on-site wastewater treatment systems (TCD, Ireland)

Dear Jan,
Did you find anyone for that position? I am currently writing a paper on something similar and I am interested to know how the research for the successful candidate is going.
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  • jankn
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Re: M.Sc. by research/PhD position (funded): GHG emissions from on-site wastewater treatment systems (TCD, Ireland)

Hi

Sure, we published a paper recently about the first results from one septic system where we had measured CO2 emissions over a soakaway. It will be available free of charge until April 30th 2017 with the journal here:
https://authors.elsevier.com/a/1UhbI_17GgGgqh

What are you interested in looking at specifically?

Currently, we are tracking CO2 and CH4 emissions over several percolation areas and will, in the future, also try to include N2O and also measure over different types soil treatment units as well as on the septic tank surface itself. Let me know, if you have any further specific questions!

Cheers
/Jan

Jan Knappe

Doctoral Researcher on environmental performance assessment and modeling of on-site wastewater treatment systems
Trinity College Dublin & University of Limerick
Email: jan.knappe(at)tcd.ie, Twitter: @JanKnappe

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  • goeco
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Re: M.Sc. by research/PhD position (funded): GHG emissions from on-site wastewater treatment systems (TCD, Ireland)

CO2 is surely just related to percentage of decomposition? In which case why measure it?

I'm most interested in N2O emissions comparing onsite anaerobic and aerobic processes. CH4 is obvious, if you use an anaerobic process then in my view harvesting/combustion of methane should be mandatory!

But what about nitrous oxide? What percentage of nitrate is converted to nitrogen gas vs NOx in the denitrification process under anaerobic conditions provided by septic tank or DEWATS? What about domestic wastewater treatment plants combining aerobic and anaerobic processes, vs 100% aerobic? Which comes out best in terms of production of NOx? Seems to me the answer to this is hugely important in terms of selection of next generation onsite wastewater processes?

cheers
Dean

Dean Satchell, M For. Sc.
Go-Eco Sustainable Solutions
www.go-eco.co.nz
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  • MissNkhosi
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Re: M.Sc. by research/PhD position (funded): GHG emissions from on-site wastewater treatment systems (TCD, Ireland)

Thank you, especially for mentioning that it will be free for the said period of time. I am doing a desk review of the Proven Practices, Experiences and Procedures (from a global evidence based perspective) with a Focus on the African Continent on the Potential of FSM to Reduce GHGs. I came across your announcement during my search for resources on the forum. I'm sure the data will be very helpful and I'll definitely ask whereever I won't understand.
K.R,
Margaret
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  • jankn
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Re: M.Sc. by research/PhD position (funded): GHG emissions from on-site wastewater treatment systems (TCD, Ireland)

You are right, Dean. The CO2 emissions are of biogenic origin and are, e.g., therefore not included in IPCC guidelines for national GHG inventories. However, to be able to assess the full carbon cycling in on-site installations (especially under varying operational and climatic conditions) one should also include CO2 emissions in the (local scale) inventories.

There is very little data on actual GHG emissions from soil treatment units and septic tanks to date. I absolutely agree that especially the production of N20 needs to be better understood.

Jan Knappe

Doctoral Researcher on environmental performance assessment and modeling of on-site wastewater treatment systems
Trinity College Dublin & University of Limerick
Email: jan.knappe(at)tcd.ie, Twitter: @JanKnappe

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