PhD student on Process Development of Green Steel Production

PhD student on Process Development of Green Steel Production

Published Deadline Location
27 Mar 30 Apr Enschede

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Job description

The iron and steel industry are confronted with pressing challenges. Historically, the industry has heavily relied on carbon-intensive blast furnaces for iron-ore reduction, contributing significantly to greenhouse gas emissions. However, with global sustainability goals and stricter environmental regulations, there's a growing urgency for innovation. Tata Steel in the Netherlands is dedicated to revolutionizing iron manufacturing by transitioning from coal to gas-based direct reduction processes (DRI), utilizing hydrogen. This approach promises a substantial reduction in carbon emissions compared to traditional blast furnace methods, aligning with the industry's commitment to environmental responsibility.

To achieve these goals, it is imperative to understand the intricate chemical reactions occurring on the iron surfaces during the direct reduction process. This understanding is crucial for ensuring controlled product quality and throughput. Inconsistencies can lead to inefficiencies, increased energy consumption, and lower product quality, which the steel industry can ill afford.

Our project focuses on developing accurate particle models, validated through experiments, and scaling it up to a comprehensive process model. This model will simulate industrial direct reduction shaft furnace processes under various operating conditions, including temperature, pressure, pellet chemistry, and gas composition when transitioning from natural gas to hydrogen based DRI production.


University of Twente (UT)


  • You have a Master’s degree in Chemical Engineering with a solid background in reaction engineering, chemical processes, and separation technologies
  • You have a high degree of responsibility and independence, while being able to collaborate with colleagues, researchers, and other staff members
  • You have experience with experimental laboratory systems
  • You have experience with modelling and simulation of (chemical) processes, ideally with the tools Aspen Plus, Aspen Custom Modeler, or equivalent
  • You are fluent in English
  • You have good communication skills and can collaborate with external partners in regular meetings and work visits

Conditions of employment

  • You will be appointed on a fulltime position for four years.
  • The university offers a dynamic ecosystem with enthusiastic colleagues in a stimulating scientific environment.
  • The PhD salary is € 2.770 in the first year and increases to € 3.539 in the fourth year.
  • The offer further involves a holiday allowance of 8% of the gross annual salary and a year-end bonus of 8,3%, a solid pension scheme, a minimum of 29 holidays, and numerous professional and personal development programs.
  • You will have a training program as part of the Twente Graduate School where you and your supervisors will determine a plan for a suitable education and supervision. Free access to sports facilities on the green campus is granted.


The Sustainable Process Technology (SPT) group is part of the Faculty of Science and Technology at the University of Twente. We conduct experimental and theoretical research in the areas of biomass conversion, affinity separations, plastic recycling, water, and CO2 capture and conversion. We combine our expertise in different disciplines (process design, chemistry, catalysis, modelling, engineering) to contribute to the development of sustainable chemical processes.


  • PhD
  • Natural sciences
  • 38—40 hours per week
  • €2770—€3539 per month
  • University graduate
  • 1726


University of Twente (UT)

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Drienerlolaan 5, 7522NB, Enschede

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