UKCCSRC Knowledge Exchange Conference (Sheffield, 6-7 September 2023)

The UKCCSRC hosted its first Knowledge Exchange Conference, at the University of Sheffield’s Inox, on 6-7th September 2023, for stakeholders from across the CCS community to present the latest learnings – and questions – from research and ongoing CCS deployment activities, with extensive informal networking opportunities provided as well.

The conference ran from 11.30am on Wednesday 6th September until 2pm on Thursday 7th September. A PDF of the conference programme booklet is available.

We also ran a CCS Training Course on Tuesday 5th-Wednesday 6th September, for industry, government and regulator employees new to CCS.  More information here.

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Conference agenda

Day 1 – Wednesday 6th September 2023

TimeSessionSpeaker and title
11:30-12:30Arrivals, registration and lunch
12:30-13:00Welcome and introductionJon Gibbins (UKCCSRC and University of Sheffield)
Mohamed Pourkashanian (Energy Institute and University of Sheffield)
13:00-13:30Keynote speakerRuqaiyah Patel (UKRI-EPSRC)
14:00-15:15Plenary session 1Mark Ellis-Jones (Environment Agency)
Enabling net zero: the role of environmental regulation
Bryony Livesey (IDC, UKRI) on behalf of Mai Bui (UKRI)
Industrial Decarbonisation Challenge: Comparison of the industrial clusters in the UK, and Supporting the decarbonisation of key industrial clusters in the UK
Andrew Cavanagh (University of Edinburgh)
Mind the Gap: will slow progress on CO2 storage undermine net zero by 2050?
15:45-17:00Parallel Session 1a:
Leila Moura (Queen’s University Belfast)
Experimental high-throughput screening of liquid and solid sorbents for gas uptake and separation
Chunfei Wu (Queen’s University Belfast)
Simple CaO-based materials for efficient CO2 capture and utilisation
Hyungwoong Ahn (University of Edinburgh)
PSA-SPUR: An Advanced Adsorption Process for Heavy Component Recovery and Its Application for On-board Carbon Capture
Parallel Session 1b:
Lee Hosking (Brunel University London)
Cement sheath bond integrity for CO2 injection wells under periodic pressure and thermal loading
James Verdon (University of Bristol)
The evolution of induced seismicity sequences generated by long-term fluid injection
Ian Watt (University of Edinburgh)
Lab-based assessment of engineered CO2 mineralization in mafic rock reservoirs
Parallel Session 1c:
Whole systems/chain and CCS integration
Abhijit Sarkar (Dastur Energy)
Industrial Scale Decarbonization of a Blast Furnace through Carbon Capture along with Clean Hydrogen Production
Lingyun Zhang (University of Nottingham)
Life Cycle Environmental Assessment and Techno-Economic Analysis of Green and Low-carbon Ethanol Production from Low-value Tail Gas
Stuart Haszeldine (University of Edinburgh)
Bottom-up CCS: capturing and storing the negative emissions value of bio-CO2
17:00-19:00Poster and drinks reception
19:00-22:00Networking dinner
(hot fork buffet)


Day 2 – Thursday 7th September 2023

TimeSessionSpeaker and title
9:00-9:30Arrivals and coffee
9:30-10:45Parallel Session 2a:
CO2 Transportation: including shipping and pipeline
Lihan Zhang (University of Edinburgh)
A stochastic programming model for planning CO2 transport infrastructure with uncertainty
Richard Graham (University of Nottingham)
First principles prediction of the physical properties of impure CO2
Simon Ames (Dragon Energy)
Dragon LNG as a net zero terminal and enabling CO2shipping in the Milford Haven Waterway
Parallel Session 2b:
Emerging solutions
Marius Dewar (Plymouth Marine Laboratory)
Assurance of CO2 storage integrity through big data analysis, developing fast site-specific marine monitoring programs
Chris Holdsworth (University of Edinburgh and Carbfix)
Monitoring, Reporting and Verification (MRV) of CO₂ storage: examples from Carbfix, Iceland
11:15-12:30Plenary Session 2Diarmaid Clery (University of Manchester)
Social license to operate (SLO) in the Hynet and Humber industrial clusters
Gareth Johnson (DRAX)
BECCS Done Well: conditions for success for bioenergy with carbon capture and storage
Emily Sidhu (UKIB)
Challenges and strategies for financing CCUS projects
12:30-13:00Keynote and closing remarksChris Thackeray (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
13:00-14:00Lunch and departures

Speaker biographies (A-Z)

Hyungwoong Ahn, University of Edinburgh

Dr Hyungwoong Ahn is a Senior Lecturer in Chemical Engineering, University of Edinburgh. He has a variety of experiences in design and analysis of novel adsorption processes for gas separation (PSA/TSA). For power and industrial decarbonisation, he has worked to develop bespoke CO2 capture processes for the emission sources, including absorption, adsorption, fluidization, etc. He has delivered the Separation Processes for Carbon Capture course at the University of Edinburgh since 2009. He has conducted research and consultancy projects on industrial gas separation that are funded by EPSRC, BEIS, ETI, SFC, Korean government and industries. He is currently one of the two managing editors of Adsorption Journal, the official publication of International Adsorption Society (IAS).

Simon Ames, Dragon LNG

Simon started in the energy industry pigging pipelines with British Gas (as a mechanical engineer undergraduate) and then designing them for a large project in Kazakhstan. Since then, he has worked for Shell in an international career over 25 years in nine different countries before joining Dragon LNG as MD in January 2023. In recent years Simon has held global and country-level leadership positions helping Shell and its Joint Ventures improve their organisational strength and capability, particularly in Integrated Gas and Renewable businesses.


Mai Bui, Imperial College London

Dr Mai Bui is a Senior Research Associate at Imperial College London and works as a Senior Research and Insight Manager at UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) for the Industrial Decarbonisation Challenge. Mai has over 12 years of research experience on CCS, and provides her expertise to clients in the private and public sectors as a consultant. She has first-hand experience in designing experimental test campaigns at pilot and demonstration CO2 capture plants, conducting tests at CSIRO’s Loy Yang pilot plant in Australia and Technology Centre Mongstad in Norway. She has published 32 papers, 5 technical reports, book chapters and co-edited two books on “Carbon Capture and Storage” and “Greenhouse Gas Removal Technologies”. In 2021, Mai and her co-authors were awarded Junior Moulton Medal by the Institute of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) for their research on CCS.

Andrew Cavanagh, University of Edinburgh

Andrew Cavanagh holds a first-class degree in geology and a PhD in petroleum systems analysis from the Universities of Glasgow and of Edinburgh, and has over 20 years of experience in CO2 storage analysis and advocacy. Since 2018, he has worked at Edinburgh University as a researcher, where he has led projects on storage and net zero readiness, including recent regional reviews of hydrogen and CO2 storage (H2Europe HyUSPRe, H2020 Strategy).

Andrew advises on site selection and development for hydrogen storage and COstorage, and develops evidence-based SCCS policy positions, translating these into consultation responses, committee evidence and media releases. Andrew engages with stakeholders from industry groups, public bodies, governmental and non-governmental organisations to build support for CCS in Scotland and across the European region. He advises on technical storage issues and net zero policy, including greenhouse gas reduction and removal, CCUS and hydrogen storage, and net zero emissions ambitions.

Diarmaid Clery, University of Manchester

Diarmaid Clery is a Research Associate at the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, which he joined in 2019 upon completing his PhD at the University of Leeds. He now works as part of IDRIC, working with stakeholders, communities and the UK public to assess the level of social support for industrial decarbonisation and BECCS. His background is in engineering, having worked as an engineer in the energy industry and completed his PhD in technical aspects of greenhouse gas removal. The overall aim of his research is to understand the interdisciplinary issues related to tackling climate change, including decarbonisation and greenhouse gas removal.

Marius Dewar, Plymouth Marine Laboratory

Marius Dewar is a marine modelling scientist based at Plymouth Marine Laboratory for the last four years, with a further ten years of previous experience on CCS related topics. His research interests focus on the development of ocean modelling systems for risk analysis, along with developing marine monitoring and verification tools and strategies, with experience in both carbon and hypersaline brine release mechanisms. Projects involve environmental risk assessments for analysis of the oceanic impact from gas scales (mm) to a fully reconstructed ocean, developing cost effective monitoring strategies to provide assurance based on the findings.

Mark Ellis-Jones, Environment Agency

Mark is the Climate Change & Energy Manager at the Environment Agency, where he leads a team focussed on enabling UK net zero through regulation as well as adapting to climate impacts, such as droughts and floods. He has led major programmes at the Environment Agency on onshore oil and gas (including shale gas), hydropower, and climate change adaptation. Mark has had previous roles working at the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office on COP26 in Glasgow, and has worked in a number of third sector organisations, including WWF-UK and the National Trust.


Jon Gibbins, UKCCSRC and University of Sheffield

Jon Gibbins is Professor of CCS at the University of Sheffield and director of the UK CCS Research Community Network+.  He has worked on energy engineering, fuel conversion and CCS for 45 years, initially in industry and then as a university academic.  Since 2002 Jon has been heavily involved in CCS activities, working on post-combustion capture and its effective integration and, through the UKCCSRC, helping to start now-mainstream UK initiatives on industrial decarbonisation (2012) and CCS clusters (2016). His personal research activities now centre around practical aspects of CCS deployment, with an emphasis on policy and economic requirements plus detailed analysis of matching capture plant designs to market conditions, supported in particular by the facilities at the Translational Energy Research Centre in Sheffield.  He is active in reviewing Best Available Technology (BAT) status for CO2 capture technologies and is also a Vice Chair of the UNECE Group of Experts on Cleaner Electricity Systems, specialising in CCS.

Richard Graham, University of Nottingham

Richard Graham is Professor of Applied Mathematics at the University of Nottingham, and has previously worked at the Universities of Leeds and Michigan. His research is centred around the application of molecular modelling, statistical mechanics and artificial intelligence to address practical industrial problems, particularly employing multiscale techniques to establish a connection between atomic-scale modelling and predictive continuum models. Richard’s CCUS work on focuses on modelling impure CO2. This entails deriving equations of state, conducting molecular simulations and exploring the potential of machine learning to analyse intermolecular interactions. Through the use of first-principles prediction, Richard has made recent progress in accurate modelling of the thermophysical properties of impure CO2, without relying on experimental data as input.

Stuart Haszeldine, University of Edinburgh

As Professor for CCS at the University of Edinburgh, Stuart has created the UK’s largest University group examining CO2 storage geology. He has over 40 years research experience in energy, innovating new approaches to oil and gas, radioactive waste, carbon capture and storage, and biochar. He was elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2002 for research on radioactive waste disposal, awarded the Geological Society William Smith Medal in 2011 for work on the geochemistry of oil and gas field reservoir quality, appointed OBE in 2012 for service to climate change technologies, and in 2021 he was appointed Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society. He is also the Director of SCCS.

Chris Holdsworth, University of Edinburgh and Carbfix

Chris is a final year PhD student at the University of Edinburgh where he is testing the use of natural isotope tracers in verifying CO2 storage in geological reservoirs. He works closely with Carbfix, an Icelandic CO2 mineral storage company, testing natural geochemical tracers on active CCS and CDR projects operated by Carbfix in Iceland. Chris spent last summer in Iceland working for Carbfix and the spring of this year working for Storegga, the lead developer of the Scottish CCS cluster Acorn. He is a geologist by background who has since specialised in stable isotope geochemistry during his BSc, MSc and PhD research projects.

Lee Hosking, Brunel University London

Lee Hosking is a Lecturer in Geo-environmental Engineering at the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Brunel University London, specialising in numerical modelling of the thermo-hydro-mechanical-chemical (THMC) behaviour of fractured rock. His research includes dual continuum and fracture network modelling to investigate geological CO₂ sequestration with respect to storage capacity, injectivity, and migration/confinement. Lee’s current projects relate to CO2 injection well engineering, eco-engineered materials, and seismic responses to fluid injection. Before joining Brunel, he was a Research Associate at Cardiff University, where he led the CO2 storage work package of the FLEXIS energy systems project.

Gareth Johnson, DRAX

Gareth is a geologist with expertise in energy geosciences. He specialises in CCS and CDR and has also worked in the geothermal energy, energy storage and oil, gas and mineral production sectors. He joined Drax in 2023, after being a Research Fellow at the Universities of Strathclyde and Edinburgh for ten years. Before that, he worked as a consultant geologist in the energy sector. He has a PhD in CCS, specialising in MMV. At Drax, Gareth leads on the science and evidence that underpin the sustainability of BECCS to help Drax deliver their commitment to be amongst the world’s first carbon removal companies.

Bryony Livesey, IDC (UKRI)

Bryony Livesey leads the Industrial Decarbonisation Challenge (IDC), which forms part of the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF). IDC is a £210m programme with £261m match funding from industry, designed to deploy low carbon technologies and enabling infrastructure in heavily industrialised regions of the UK. Bryony was previously Head of Technology at Costain, with responsibility for the identification and development of new technology. She was a member of BEIS’ CCUS Cost Challenge Task Force, a Director of the CCSA (where she co-chaired the Technical Working Group) and has previously chaired the Independent Advisory Panel for the UKCCSRC.

Leila Moura, Queen’s University Belfast

Leila graduated in Chemistry (MSc) at Instituto Superior Técnico, Portugal in 2008. In 2014 she completed a PhD in physical-chemistry at Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1, France studying the potential of ionic liquids for the separation of light hydrocarbons. For this work she was awarded the 2018 European Federation of Chemical Engineering (EFCE) Excellence Award in Fluid Separations.

Her interest in developing alternative materials with environmental and energetic impact was further enhanced during the following 4 years of post-doctoral fellowships in the Fourmentin group (ULCO, France), a 2 year Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship in the Holbrey group (Queen’s University Belfast, UK) and an InvestNI PoC project in the Manesiotis group (Queen’s University Belfast, UK). In 2019 Leila started a 5-year Royal Academy of Engineering Research Fellowship and founded a research group focused in developing “Liquid Engineering for Gas Separation”.

Ruqaiyah Patel, UKRI-EPSRC

Ruqaiyah Patel is the Joint Head of Energy and Decarbonisation at EPSRC, part of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). Her work focusses on the strategic leadership and oversight of EPSRC’s activities in hydrogen, negative emission technologies, decarbonising heating and cooling, industrial decarbonisation, and whole systems approaches for Net Zero, amongst other responsibilities including the international strategy for Engineering Net Zero. Before this role, she worked as a Portfolio Manager within the Engineering Theme and as a Senior Portfolio Manager in Maths and AI, where she had responsibility for a diverse portfolio of activities and initiatives.

Mohamed Pourkashanian, Energy Institute and University of Sheffield

Professor Mohamed Pourkashanian OBE is the Head of Energy Institute at the University of Sheffield, the Managing Director of the Translational Energy Research Centre and the Sustainable Aviation Fuels Innovation Centre, leads the University of Sheffield’s Energy2050 initiative, holds a chair in Energy Engineering and is the General Secretary of International Flame Research Foundation (IFRF).


Abhijit Sarkar, Dastur Energy

Abhijit Sarkar is Dastur Energy’s Executive Vice President, overseeing their relationships with clients, partners, and funding institutions, as well as the delivery of major projects on a worldwide basis, consulting at the highest levels with companies, financial institutions, investors and policy makers on operations, strategy and policy. In recent years, his team has delivered pioneering clean energy projects in the Middle East, India and North America relating to carbon capture, hydrogen, methanol and other high-value chemicals. These include the first petcoke gasification project in the public sector in India, the first carbon capture project at an integrated steel plant in North America, and the first large-scale coal/pet coke gasification to produce low cost CO2 in the Middle East.

Prior to Dastur, Abhijit acted as an advisor to the C-suite through his own firm. Abhijit also worked at Janus Capital, Denver, USA and led significant investments in the iron & steel and global commodities, among other sectors. He has dual BS degrees in Computer Science & Economics from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and an MBA from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania.

Emily Sidhu, UK Infrastructure Bank

Emily Sidhu is a Director in the Banking and Investment team in UK Infrastructure Bank. She is responsible for the CCUS business sector as well as looking at hydrogen and other clean energy sectors. Emily was previously at UK Export Finance for 17 years, where her last role was as Head of Project Finance risk, having credit risk responsibility for project finance transactions from initiation, deal negotiation, monitoring the portfolio and restructuring.



Chris Thackeray, Department for Energy Security and Net Zero

Chris Thackeray is the Deputy Director for Power CCUS, Energy & Infrastructure Group, responsible for developing business models and is lead negotiator on power CCUS and BECCS, as part of the government’s CCUS programme. He also leads international engagement on CCUS. Prior to moving to the Department of Energy Security & Net Zero, previously Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, in March 2021, Chris was Head of GB Wholesale Markets at Ofgem where he led on power market design issues and regulation of the Capacity Market. Before that, Chris did various commercial, policy and delivery roles at the National Grid Electricity System Operator where he was a graduate. Chris’ education is in management, economics and policy as well as a masters in climate change.

James Verdon, University of Bristol

James Verdon is a Senior Lecturer in Applied Geophysics at the University of Bristol. He specialises in the geophysical surveying of subsurface facilities, with a particular focus on microseismic monitoring and induced seismicity. He has provided geophysical analysis from several large-scale CCS sites around the world. He currently sits on the Steering Committee for the UKRI Carbon Storage Research Facility, and leads the Bristol University Microseismicity Project (BUMPS).


Ian Watt, University of Edinburgh

Ian Watt is a final year PhD student at the University of Edinburgh, where he has spent the last three years developing a new methodology and laboratory apparatus for investigating carbon mineralization in mafic and ultramafic rocks. Ian holds a degree in Physics and Music, and an MSc in Marine Geophysics. Before undertaking a PhD he worked for six years in the energy industry, undertaking maintenance on upstream and transportation infrastructure in the hydrocarbon and renewables sectors.


Chunfei Wu, Queen’s University Belfast

Dr Chunfei Wu is a Reader at the School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering at Queen’s University Belfast. He has worked in the areas of converting renewable and waste resources to energy, fuel, and chemicals through catalytic thermo-chemical routes for about 20 years. He is the PI of a EU RISE international exchange programme in relation to biomass gasification and carbon capture and utilisation. Dr Wu is Co-I of several EPSRC, Innovate UK, Royal Society and other EU projects. For example, he is the Co-I in EP/R000670/1 using microwave for bio-oil upgrading; Co-I in Innovate UK (Ref: 29478) for advanced battery thermal control and thermal using thermal phase change materials; Host academic for a Royal Society K.C. Wong International Fellowship (Ref: NIF\R1\191817). He has published >220 peer-reviewed journal papers with >11000 citations (H index of 62, Google Scholar) in the areas of catalytic thermo-chemical conversion of wastes. He is a Managing Editor of Biomass and Bioenergy and the Editor-in-Chief of Carbon Capture Science & Technology, a Gold Open Access journal published by Elsevier.

Lihan Zhang, University of Edinburgh

Lihan Zhang is a PhD student at the University of Edinburgh working in the Schools of Engineering and Mathematics. She specializes in the field of operational research and recently completed her MSc in this topic at the same university. Lihan’s research interests lie in the long term planning of CO2 transportation infrastructure, considering the uncertainties associated with CO2 capture development. Lihan incorporates scenario trees in the multi-stage stochastic programming model to capture the various possibilities in real-world situations, providing valuable information to assist in decision-making processes. Though her research, Lihan aims at advance the understanding and optimization of CO2 transportation systems under uncertainty.

Lingyun Zhang, University of Nottingham

Lingyun Zhang is a PhD candidate at the University of Nottingham. Her research project is the low-carbon potential research of CCUS technology and life cycle techno-economic-environmental assessment. In September 2020, she was admitted to the University of Nottingham (UNNC) with a full PhD scholarship. Her academic performance ranked top 3 in her major, and she has won first-class scholarships many times. She has published 6 SCI papers as the first author and participated in 4 international conferences. She has participated in the national key research and development project, the national key strategic research project of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the Shanghai Science and Technology Commission project. She won the UNNC 6th PGR conference Excellence Award, the UNNC 4th Annual PGR Research Showcase Best Poster Award, the first prize in the 5th life cycle carbon neutral innovation competition, and the scholarship fund of China Scholarship Council.

Presentation slides

 Presentations from our conference sessions are available below (where we have permission to share them).


Welcome: Mohamed Pourkashanian, Energy Institute & University of Sheffield


Opening keynote: Ruqaiyah Patel, UKRI - EPSRC


Plenary 1: Mark Ellis-Jones, Environment Agency


Plenary 1: Bryony Livesey & Mai Bui, UKRI


Plenary 1: Andrew Cavanagh, University of Edinburgh


Parallel 1a: Leila Moura, Queen's University Belfast


Parallel 1a: Chunfei Wu, Queen's University Belfast


Parallel 1a: Hyungwoong Ahn, University of Edinburgh


Parallel 1b: Lee Hosking, Brunel University London


Parallel 1b: James Verdon, University of Bristol


Parallel 1c: Lingyun Zhang, University of Nottingham


Parallel 1c: Stuart Haszeldine, University of Edinburgh


Parallel 2a: Simon Ames, Dragon Energy


Parallel 2a: Lihan Zhang, University of Edinburgh


Parallel 2a: Richard Graham, University of Nottingham


Parallel 2b: Marius Dewar, Plymouth Marine Laboratory


Parallel 2b: Chris Holdsworth, Carbfix & University of Edinburgh


Plenary 2: Diarmaid Clery, University of Manchester


Plenary 2: Gareth Johnson, DRAX


Plenary 2: Emily Sidhu, UK Infrastructure Bank


Closing keynote: Chris Thackeray, Department for Energy Security & Net Zero

Poster Gallery

Posters from the poster reception on 7 September 2023 are published below (where we have permission to share them).

ECR Prize Winner

ECR Prize Winner

ECR Prize Winner

Billy Davies, Advanced Exergy Analysis of SE-SMR Process - 1700x2403

ECR Prize Winner

Abstract Review Committee

A call for presentation and poster outlines/abstracts from members of the UKCCSRC Network+ closed on 5th June 2023 (information about the process can be found here). Thank you to the abstract review committee for their support in assessing proposals and input at the abstract review committee meeting:

Mohaned Aboshatta (University of Strathclyde)
Efenwengbe Aminaho (Robert Gordon University)
Jamie Bennison (Uniper Technologies Ltd)
Mona Bhagat (KBR)
Jeremy Carey (eXergetic)
Minann Dsouza (slb)
David Fitzgerald (Self-employed consultant)
Lee Hosking (Brunel University London)
Philip Jerome (Federal University of Technology, Minna, Nigeria)
Clement Joulin (Net-Zero Geosystems)
Roberto Loza Espejel (Cardiff University)
John Midgley (Energy Geoscience)
Leila Moura (Queen’s University Belfast/QUILL)
Daniel Mullen (SSE Thermal)
James Verdon (University of Bristol)
Chuang Wen (University of Exeter)
Chunfei Wu (Queen’s University Belfast)