My Time as a BCIA Research Leadership Fellow

By Prof Dr.-Ing. Klaus Hein

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“I closely monitored the continuation of the two projects, as well as other PhD research projects within the Monash research group, and progress was regularly presented at monthly performance seminars. During these seminars, the PhD students were asked to demonstrate their scientific advances either in brief, for reasons of internal communication and knowledge exchange, or as extended presentations, in particular as part of training for internal or external seminars.

“My regular tasks as a Fellow within the Monash research group included, individual progress discussions, corrections and improvements of reports and publication manuscripts. The editorial work included improvements in scientific content as well as use of language and diction and training for advancing presentation skills and materials. In transfer examinations, I also acted as supervisor to students from the Group and as examiner to external students.

“Following the conclusion of Project 1 and hence my involvement with HRL, my Fellowship was extended on a part-time basis with Monash University and with continued financial support from BCIA.

"In addition to focusing on the supervision of PhD students, I also acted as an assessor at the ‘2nd Annual Chemical Engineering Conference’, organised by the Department of Chemical Engineering in September 2012 and was a member of the judging panel for the ‘2012 Postgraduate Student Energy Awards’ as part of the ‘All Energy Conference and Exhibition’ held in Melbourne in October 2012.

“Regarding international linkages, there was – and still is – a strong external interest in Monash work. Visitors during my Fellowship term included representatives from Nippon Steel, MHI, Chiyoda, University of Tokyo, IHI, J Power, JCOAL and Hitachi - all from Japan - as well as VTT Research Centre, Finland.

“Through my international connections and knowledge I was able to select potential partners with extensive experience and advanced equipment which would complement resources available at Monash.

“In this way, in-kind partnerships were successfully established with nine overseas institutes in Europe and USA in order to initiate international collaboration on selected topics of mutual importance - workshops, joint publications in international journals and exchange of researchers.

“Monash papers were presented at a number of international conferences including the ‘International Conference on Chemical Looping’ organised by our partner Energy Systems and Technology at the university Darmstadt, Germany in September 2012; the Clearwater Clean Coal Conference in 2011 and 2012; and two papers have already been accepted for the upcoming Clearwater Clean Coal Conference in 2013.

“Other activities of the Monash research group included, seven presentations by students, one keynote lecture by Associate Professor Sankar Bhattacharya and one plenary lecture, delivered by myself during the ‘International

Workshop on Clean Technologies of Coal and Biomass Utilisation’ held in Anshan, China in June 2012.

Above: Opening the CTCBU workshop held in Anshan, China in 2012.

“Furthermore, eight representatives of the group showcased their research at the ‘2012 Postgraduate Student Energy Awards’ as part of the ‘All Energy Conference and Exhibition’.

“Additionally, through my European contacts it was also possible for the Monash research group to participate in cluster projects of the European Commission under the on-going 7th Framework Program (FP7) including the Commission’s call for ‘Energy’ and ‘IRISES’. The two proposals are currently under review within the European Commission and outcomes are expected in the first half of 2013.

“During my Fellowship term, I also served as a member of the Advisory Panel of the ECOPRO Project by Nippon Steel and Chiyoda in Japan, for the potential utilisation of Victorian brown coal through gasification and as a member of the local organising committee and invited speaker at the ‘2nd International Symposium on the Sustainable Use of Low Rank Coals’ in Melbourne in April 2012.

“I was also invited to present brown coal research in Australia at a number of symposiums during 2012 including, the ‘APEC Clean Fossil Energy Seminar 2012’ held on the Gold Coast, Queensland at the APEC Symposium on ‘Energy Efficiency of Low Rank Coal’ a workshop at Tsinghua University, Beijing and the National CCS conference held in Perth.

“Following the conclusion of my Fellowship, I remain involved in the submission of cluster research proposals to the European Commission and in the planning of two workshops with Chinese partners scheduled for March and June 2013.

“I am also actively engaged in the continuation of collaboration and exchange activities with overseas partners through the choice of appropriate research items of mutual importance and under consideration of the required boundary conditions in terms of timing, finances and intended outcome for the benefit of both partners.”

Professor Hein has made a significant contribution to the development and bolstering of BCIA’s international linkages and networks throughout his Research Leader Fellowship. He has also enhanced international collaboration and strengthened the linkages and complementary research capabilities of Monash University with HRL Technology's applied research, project development and industrial experience and contributed to the development of brown coal research capability at the University's Gippsland campus.

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