As part of the many innovative research projects aiming at achieving carbon neutrality by 2050, one prospective concept is to use a nuclear power plant to produce synthetic jet fuels by sourcing carbon dioxide from the air.
This postdoctoral proposal aims at predesigning an integrated energy conversion system coupling a nuclear energy source with electrochemical and thermochemical processes dedicated to the production of kerosene from water and atmospheric CO2 (Direct Air Capture system). Important considerations for such a system are its energy efficiency, its capacity to meet projected industrial needs and its competitiveness in a future decarbonized energy market.
The postdoctoral fellow will first perform numerical simulations in order to sketch an optimized process flow configuration coupling the DAC system with the nuclear power plant. He/She will also define the operational conditions of the system. In a second step, in association with another postdoctoral fellow working on the chemical transformation processes, he/she will perform a global integration of the various processes involved, from the atmospheric dioxide carbon to the final jet fuel, taking into account the required flows of heat and electricity. The design drivers will be the optimization of the overall plant efficiency and the operational conditions. Finally, he/she will propose a preliminary balance of plant accounting for regulatory constraints in order to evaluate the main design factors such as the required CO2 capture surface area for example.
The postdoctoral fellow will be based in a research unit specialized in innovative nuclear system studies. He/She will develop a technical understanding of prospective nuclear and decarbonization technologies combined.