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Engineering Fundamentals of Energy Efficiency

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Using energy more efficiently is essential if carbon emissions are to be reduced. Yet, which efficiency options should be prioritised? Should efforts be focused on raising the efficiency of light bulbs or diesel engines, insulating houses or improving coal-fired power stations? This research presents a rational basis for assessing the potential of all future developments in energy efficiency. This is achieved by tracing the flow of energy through the global energy network and finding the theoretical and practical efficiency limits for the technical devices which transform energy. The results show a significant opportunity to improve global energy efficiency and enables research and policy decisions to be directed towards the actions that will in the long-term make the most difference.

Jonathan is a Research Associate in the Low Carbon and Material Processing group at Cambridge University Engineering Department, and a Research Fellow at Fitzwilliam College. He has a BEng in chemical and process engineering (University of Canterbury, New Zealand), an MPhil in Engineering for Sustainable Development (University of Cambridge) and has recently completed his doctoral thesis entitled Engineering Fundamentals of Energy Efficiency (University of Cambridge). Jonathan previously worked for five years in industry as Process Engineer and a further four years in Lima, Peru as a consultant in development engineering. He is currently working as part of a five year project, WellMet2050, which aims to identify and validate all means to halve global carbon emissions from the production of steel and aluminium goods, against a projected doubling in demand.

This talk is part of the ELCF - Engineering for a Low Carbon Future (seminar series) series.

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