Program Chair and Professor, Holder of the Qatar Shell Professorship and Executive Director of Graduate Studies, Texas A&M University, Qatar

Development of Integrated Resource Utilization Strategies under Emissions Constraints

The demand for the conversion of feedstock into value-added chemicals and fuels through different routes is expected to increase with world population and improving standards of living. At the same time, there is a need to meet emerging requirements for emissions reduction and to achieve better circularity of conversion strategies. Ambitious CO2 emission reduction targets to avoid dangerous climate change effects and thereby enhance sustainability is a prominent example of the former. In the oil and gas sector in particular, utilizing natural gas under stringent emissions constraints will require a wide variety of existing and emerging technology options to be considered in determining optimal strategies for utilization. Hence, the development of an integrated approach to systematically screen through the many possible strategic options – across multiple feedstock, many conversion routes, products, intermediates, and emissions – is important for the identification of improved utilization strategies for the future.

The lecture will present an overview of research into the development of a systematic, optimization-based approach for the systematic screening of optimal resource utilization options considering multiple feedstock, conversion processes, product choices, intermediates and emissions, including but not limited to natural gas, different energy sources, value added products, as well as waste such as carbon dioxide. The approach follows a novel problem representation and results in a structural resource management network optimization problem. The work focusses on processing clusters and the proposed method will optimize raw material usage, energy requirements, and power requirements across industrial parks to identify those strategies, which maximizing profitability while meeting emissions constraints. The solution of the optimization model identifies efficient routes to utilize resources in the processing cluster under constraints on allowable emissions, resource availability whilst maximizing economic potential. After explaining the developed approach, a case study will be presented to show how the method can help determine strategic resource utilization choices in complex systems where multiple feed stocks, intermediates and products are simultaneously considered.

CV: He currently leads research into innovating desalination process designs with a focus on membrane-based systems, the optimal use of renewable forms of energy in desalination, desalination infrastructure planning, the efficient use of energy in industrial zones, the synthesis of novel materials for power generation from alternative energy sources, and the development of tools to minimize environmental impacts from industrial activities.