Please note: Project vacancies in the Ryan Institute will be advertised on this page, any unsolicited requests for Master’s or Ph.D degrees will not be dealt with.
Civil Engineering: Funded MEngSc Scholarship
Project Title: Measurement and modeling of health impacts arising from the landspreading of biosolids
Supervisor: Dr Mark Healy
Duration: Funded for 2 years (Structured MEngSc), full-time.
Project description: This project is funded by the EPA under the STRIVE programme. The participants in this project are NUI Galway, Teagasc and UCD. Biosolids are the by-product of urban wastewater treatment. When spread on arable land or grassland, and provided that they are treated to the approved standards, they may offer an excellent source of nutrients and metals required for plant and crop growth. Legislation governing the application of biosolids to land does not consider the relationship between biosolids application rates and surface runoff of nutrients, suspended sediment, pathogens, emerging contaminants (EC), or metals; nor do they consider the dose-response relationship between associated hazards and human health. The aims of this study are to: (1) examine, under controlled conditions in the laboratory and field, the impact of the landspreading of biosolids (on grassland) on surface runoff/subsurface drainage/shallow groundwater of nutrients, solids, metals, pathogens and an EC (either natural toxins, veterinary medicine, or hormones arising from animals) (2) model and conduct a risk assessment of potential hazards of human health concern. The NUI Galway/Teagasc project team will focus on the first objective. Funding is in place for a 2-year MEngSc, but depending on progress and the candidate, the project partners hope to extend this to a 3-year funded PhD. The student will be based in Teagasc, Johnstown Castle, Co. Wexford.
Job Description: The student will carry out field-scale and laboratory studies, which will include: (1) identification and instrumentation of study site micro-plots (2) rainfall simulation studies on the micro-plots; water quality, microbiological and flow data collection (3) data analyses.
Stipend: € 21,345/annum (to include fees of €5,345)
Entry Requirements: Minimum qualifications for this position are: Bachelor’s degree (H1 or H 2.1), or equivalent, in disciplines such as civil and environmental engineering/ microbiology/ agricultural/environmental science. The successful applicant must demonstrate good initiative, have excellent mathematical and laboratory skills with a strong interest in field work, and possess a full driving license.
Expected start date: May 7th, 2013
How to apply:
e.g. Please send a letter of introduction and a current CV, indicating your research experience and including the names of two referees to Dr Mark Healy via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Closing date for applications: 5pm on Friday April 19, 2013.
National University of Ireland, Galway is an equal opportunities employer.
POSTGRADUATE RESEARCH SCHOLARSHIP
ENVIRONMENT AND HEALTH
SCHOOL OF PHYSICS
Post Date: March 12, 2013
Applications are invited for a student scholarship for a PhD degree by research in the area of Environment and Health, Centre for Climate and Air Pollution Studies, in the School of Physics. The project will involve a study of Indoor Air Quality, Thermal Comfort, Ventilation and Occupant behaviour in Energy Efficient Homes, and will involve field work at various locations throughout Ireland. The research project is sponsored by the Irish EPA.
The successful candidate will hold an honours degree (2.1 minimum) in a Science or in an Engineering discipline.
For informal enquires about this research scholarship; please contact the academic project leaders Dr Miriam Byrne or Dr. Marie Coggins, Tel: 353-91-495056; or via e-mail: Miriam.email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
Two Postgraduate Research Opportunities
Green Farm: Development of On-Farm Co-Digestion of the Organic Fraction of Municipal Solid Waste (OFMSW) and Animal Manure for Bioenergy Production and Resource Recycling
This four-year project has recently been funded by Science Foundation Ireland (SFI). Three partner organizations will participate in this project: Civil Engineering/Ryan Institute, National University of Ireland, Galway (NUIG); Eco-Innovation Research Centre, Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT); and Animal and Grassland Research and Innovation Centre, Teagasc (the Irish Agriculture and Food Development Authority), Moorepark, Fermoy, Co. Cork. This project will provide financial support to two PhD students who will be registered in NUIG.
PhD student 1 will conduct laboratory research in NUIG including: (1) literature review on anaerobic digestion, source-separation technologies, household waste collection, and biodegradable polymeric materials; (2) characterization of brown bin waste generated in typical Irish towns; (3) laboratory-scale study on anaerobic biodegradation of food/yard waste packing materials; and (4) evaluation of the existing technologies and procedures for processing brown bin waste.
PhD student 2 will conduct laboratory and meso-scale experiments in NUIG and at Moorepark Research Centre, including: (1) literature review on legislation, anaerobic digestion, digestate utilization, and economic and GHG emission analysis of anaerobic digestion; (2) co-digestion of pig manure and OFMSW in laboratory- and pilot-scale digesters; (3) mathematical modelling of co-digestion of pig manure and OFMSW; and (4) evaluation of digestate quality, biosafety and microbial composition of the digestate for use as a fertiliser.
The PhD students will receive a high level of support from the three partner institutions. The Environmental Research Group at NUIG will provide access to environmental analysis, biosensor and molecular biology laboratories, as well as pilot-scale anaerobic digesters. WIT will provide expertise on biosafety of organic waste disposal and recycling, analysis of manure-borne pathogens (particularly Salmonella) and 454 pyrosequencing techniques for analyzing microbiological communities. Teagasc will provide the students with experience in manure management and operation of pilot-scale units.
The stipend paid to the successful candidates will be €18,000 per annum for four years and tuition fees will be funded by the project. Applicants must have a degree (2.1 minimum) in environmental engineering, environmental science, microbiology, biochemical engineering, biotechnology or a related discipline.
Please send your CV and a cover letter with names and contact details of two referees to Dr. Xinmin Zhan. For additional information please contact:
For other postgraduate vacancies at NUI Galway visit NUI Galway’s Career Development Centre website.