From 9th to 11th July 2018 a summer school masterclass was held at University of Sheffield for Energy CDT students and supervisors. The summer school was funded by EPSRC and UKERC. Robbie Abernethy, a fourth year Fusion CDT student based at University of Oxford, attended the event and wrote this report:
“In early July several Fusion CDT students attended the Energy CDTs Masterclass in Sheffield. The three-day event presented an opportunity for us to meet other PhD students working in a wide range of related topics and develop a wider understanding of the range of challenges involved in the energy transition.
The first day began with a poster session, which demonstrated the range of energy research going on in the UK, from electricity transmission grid modelling to novel production techniques for hydrogen fuel cells. I thoroughly enjoyed meeting and networking with students from across the UK and learning about many new topics.
The second and third days were comprised of small group activities. Energy law experts from academia and law firms led a session on international energy contracts. The groups were then asked to produce a position based upon a scenario and enter into negotiation with another group, representing the opposite side. This session not only taught us about the difficulties of international energy management but also a range of transferable skills including teamwork, analysing scenarios and negotiation techniques.
Representatives from the European Commission challenged the groups to produce solutions for decarbonising European Islands. This provoked novel ways of thinking about energy production and usage, and the teams thought up a range of creative solutions, from using hydrogen on small scale grids to floating power stations. The best solutions are being taken forward to a European Commission event for the Decarbonising European Islands project.
I found the Masterclass a great success. Not only were there networking opportunities aplenty, which may develop into future working relationships, but I learned a vast amount about the many different areas that require work as we progress towards a sustainable energy system. Additionally, the event was very enjoyable and inspiring for my future career.”