The MSc in Advanced Process Integration and Design started in the Department of Chemical Engineering (UMIST) over twenty years ago. The programme was a result of emerging research from the Centre for Process Integration, initially focused on energy efficiency, but expanded to include efficient use of raw materials and emissions reduction. Much of the content of the course stems from research related to energy production, including oil and gas processing.
The MSc in Advanced Process Integration and Design aims to enable students with a prior qualification in chemical engineering to acquire a deep and systematic conceptual understanding of the principles of process design and integration in relation to the petroleum, gas and chemicals sectors of the process industries.
Overview of course structure and content In the first trimester, all students take course units on energy systems, utility systems and computer aided process design. Energy Systems develops systematic methods for designing heat recovery systems, while Utility Systems focuses on provision of heat and power in the process industries. Computer Aided Process Design develops skills for modelling and optimisation of chemical processes.
In the second trimester, the students choose three elective units from a range covering reaction systems, distillation systems, distributed and renewable energy systems, biorefining, and oil and gas processing. These units focus on design, optimisation and integration of process technologies and their associated heat and power supply systems.
In two research-related units, students develop their research skills and prepare a proposal for their research project. These units develop students skills in critical assessment of research literature, group work, written and oral communication, time management and research planning.
Students then carry out the research project during the third trimester. In these projects, students apply their knowledge and skills in process design and integration to investigate a wide range of process technologies and design methodologies. Recent projects have addressed modelling, assessment and optimisation of petroleum refinery hydrotreating processes, crude oil distillation systems, power plants, waste heat recovery systems, refrigeration cycles with mixed refrigerants, heat recovery steam generators, biorefining and biocatalytic processes and waste-to-energy technologies.
The course also aims to develop students' skills in implementing engineering models, optimisation and process simulation, in the context of chemical processes, using bespoke and commercially available software.
Industrial relevance of the course A key feature of the course is the applicability and relevance of the learning to the process industries. The programme is underpinned by research activities in the Centre for Process Integration within the School. This research focuses on energy efficiency, the efficient use of raw materials, the reduction of emissions reduction and operability in the process industries. Much of this research has been supported financially by the Process Integration Research Consortium for over 30 years. Course units are updated regularly to reflect emerging research and design technologies developed at the University of Manchester and also from other research groups worldwide contributing to the field.
The research results have been transferred to industry via research communications, training and software leading to successful industrial application of the new methodologies. The Research Consortium continues to support research in process integration and design in Manchester, identifying industrial needs and challenges requiring further research and investigation and providing valuable feedback on practical application of the methodologies. In addition, the Centre for Process Integration has long history of delivering material in the form of continuing professional development courses, for example in Japan, China, Malaysia, Australia, India, Saudi Arabia, Libya, Europe, the United States, Brazil and Colombia.
The MSc course in Advanced Process Design and Integration typically attracts 40 students; our graduates have found employment with major international oil and petrochemical companies (e.g. Shell, BP, Reliance and Petrobras and Saudi Aramco), chemical and process companies (e.g. Air Products), engineering, consultancy and software companies (e.g. Jacobs and Aspen Tech) and academia.
This programme is accredited by the IChemE (Institution of Chemical Engineers).