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Advanced Positron Imaging and Numerical Modelling of Segregation and Transport of Plastics in Fluidised Beds: Toward a Circular Economy for Plastics

Event Type
Illinois Sustainable Technology Center
Nov 19, 2020   12:00 - 1:00 pm  
Kit Windows-Yule - Lecturer in Chemical Engineering, School of Chemical Engineering, University of Birmingham
Elizabeth Meschewski
Originating Calendar
Illinois Sustainable Technology Center Events

Abstract: The plastic waste crisis is one of the great global challenges facing modern society. In this talk, we discuss a new technology designed to recycle mixed plastic waste, converting it into new, virgin-quality plastic feedstocks, clean, low-sulphur fuels, and other useful products. We also introduce Positron Emission Particle Tracking (PEPT), a technique which allows the interior dynamics of large, optically-opaque systems such as these to be imaged with high spatial and temporal resolution, and explore how this technique – combined with advanced numerical modelling techniques – is being used to help optimise this nascent recycling method, and thus bring a promising concept toward industrial reality.


Biography: Gaining his PhD in Nuclear Physics at the University of Birmingham in 2015, Dr. Windows-Yule has worked as a researcher in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Twente in the Netherlands, and in Chemical and Bioengineering at the Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg, before returning to the University of Birmingham as an Assistant Professor in the School of Chemical Engineering. This diverse and highly multi-disciplinary experience has armed Dr. Windows-Yule with a variety of experimental and numerical techniques, from PEPT and PTV to DEM, CFD and MP-PIC, which he applies to a variety of scientific and industrial problems.


His current research focuses on three main areas:

  1. Addressing climate change, in particular through the development of novel plastic and heavy metal recycling techniques and the production of novel biofuels the advancement and optimisation of industrial process equipment
  2. The optimisation of industrial process equipment, working with industrial partners including AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline, Mondel─ôz, Procter and Gamble, and Unilever
  3. The development of novel positron imaging methodologies, and the application of these both to the above and other important contemporary problems.
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