Monday, 16 February 2015

Xinyan Huang wins Qatar Petroleum Medal for research on Clean Fossil Fuels

I am delighted t announce that my PhD student Xinyan Huang, working on peat fires, has been awarded the Qatar Petroleum Medal for PhD Research Excellence in Clean Fossil Fuels.
Xinyan (center) receives the QP Medal from Dr Naji Saad
during the award dinner at 170 Queens Gate.
Prof Blunt is to his left.

Xinyan wearing the QP Medal and the happy supervisor.

 The Press Release from Imperial reads:  

The Qatar Petroleum Medal and Prize for Research Excellence in Clean Fossil Fuels is awarded annually to a PhD student at Imperial College London who is in their third or fourth year of study. Sponsored by Qatar Petroleum, through the Qatar Carbonates and Carbon Storage Research Centre (QCCSRC), the award is to recognise their outstanding achievements in the field of Clean Fossil Fuels.

This year’s prize of £1000 and a commemorative medal has been awarded to Xinyan Huang from the Department of Mechanical Engineering. In a field of very strong candidates, it was his achievements in research and his publication record that impressed the judges. “Xinyan has been a fantastic student since he started here in 2012, it is a joy to work with someone like him who can seamlessly combine experiments and modelling to answer scientific questions” says Dr Guillermo Rein (that is me!), Xinyan’s PhD supervisor “I think this award recognises that he has been a valuable member of the engineering community both here at Imperial but also in the wider Clean Fossil Fuels field.” Xinyan’s thesis is a computational and experimental study of the chemical, heat and mass transfer mechanisms governing the smouldering combustion of peat. His research focuses on peat, which is essentially a young coal, and is providing a fundamental understanding of the accidental burning of this sub-fossil fuel. These are the largest fires on Earth with a massive carbon footprint. He has written numerous significant peer-reviewed papers and presented his work at conferences and seminars in the UK, Europe and further afield. 

“Xinyan’s work has brought new insight and quantitative modelling to an important, but to date under-studied, source of carbon emissions, peat combustion,” says Professor Geoff Maitland, Founding Director of QCCSRC “He joins a list of previous winners who have gone on to successful careers in industry and academia and we will wish Xinyan well in his future endeavours.” 

As well as conducting his research, Xinyan is a Teaching Assistant at Imperial and has been a Visiting Scholar at University of Science and Technology in China and at the National University of Singapore. The Qatar Petroleum Medal and Prize was awarded to Xinyan at the dinner during the QCCSRC Annual Review. QCCSRC is based within the Department of Chemical Engineering and the Department of Earth Science and Engineering.