Growing up in a third world country where the energy generation has dwindled over theyears has consequently made majority of the population endure the hardship of living withinadequate basic amenities. Although the country is one of the largest oil producers in Africa andamong the top exporters of liquefied natural gas in the world, this is not reflected on the amountof energy the country is able to generate, which is just below 5,500MW. Renewable energy hasbeen tipped as an escape route from this dilapidating state, since developed countries can be usedas a relevant blueprint. Inspite of the fact that the cost of integrating renewable energy into thenational grid would be capital intensive, this would revolutionize the nation, solving the twopronged predicament of simultaneously improving the economy and impeding further escape ofgreenhouse gases to the environment. With a drive to be part of the solution to the ailing concernsof energy generation in Nigeria and other nations alike, I would like to pursue a Masters inMechanical engineering with area of specialization on Energy and Process Technology at TUDelft, where I know, without reservations, will be a major stepping stone in achieving my dream.Although I have read so many good reviews of TU Delft (e.g. on Quora) and had gottenfirst-hand positive responses of the top grade lectures from close friends in the University, goingthrough the curriculum for Mechanical engineering, I was fascinated by the exhaustive nature ofthe curriculum on energy and process technology. I was also captivated by the freedom to takeelective courses tailored to different interests. Additionally, the courses are structured to preparestudents for further studies in their desired doctoral fields, and the collaboration withmultinationals and research laboratories for ground breaking researches in the Netherlands issecond to none. All these lured me to be part of this world leading University. I have always wantedto study to the zenith of my field to learn from outstanding scholars, innovators, and professionalswhile also having the mix of different cultures in the university community. Considering the ratherin-exhaustive attractions, becoming an independent Energy researcher while acclimatizing withthe Dutch culture interests me, and I believe TU delft is an excellent place to achieve this.As an undergraduate student, my interest in renewable energy systems increased myconsciousness of its application in various core courses. The course on Fluid Mechanics increasedmy understanding of the effect of eddies on large scale vertical-axis wind turbine. Similarly, thecourse on Applied Thermodynamics broadened my view on the utilization of steam produced fromhot reservoirs for geothermal power plants, while the course on Science of Materials gave meinsight into improved thin film materials for fuel cell technology. I also took a course on renewableenergy sources and utilization where we analysed ocean thermal energy conversion systems, andits application in sub-Saharan Africa. These and more increased my desire to learn more onsustainable energy related matters.After graduation, I joined a Wind energy research group in Mechanical Engineeringdepartment, University of Lagos. A particular research I was involved in was on the analysis ofaerodynamic forces of a vertical axis wind turbine. But due to the moribund state of the subsonicwind tunnel in our lab, which originally measured two force components (lift and drag forces), Idesigned an external bottom-mounted force balance instrumentation system which measured 3forces and 3 moments. I was also part of the energy audit team for the faculty of Engineering,University of Lagos and presented twice at an international conference. Hence, continuing in mypassion for energy, I would like to specialize in Energy and Process Technology.Perusing the energy and process technology website, I was excited by a few available MScprojects. One of them on the “Investigation of dilute random spring networks as smart materials,”involved developing novel designer materials for varying applications. I believe the project isessential for improving the efficiency of energy technologies. And I would enjoy exploringproperties of random networks numerically and theoretically. In addition, I was also curious aboutthe “Electro-reduction of CO2 in non-aqueous solvents for energy storage application,” whichconcerns investigating solvents for CO2 capture. I am interested in this project because itrepresents an essential contribution in amending the increasing amounts of a major greenhouse gas(CO2) towards sustainable energy conversion. Thirdly, I would like to investigate the effects ofelectrode structure and composition on fuel cell technology, the electrochemical fuel and oxygenreactions used for different processing techniques and also explore new anode materials for usewith easily available fuel. This project seeks to explore new fuel cell microstructures andcomponents aimed at improving their lifespan while also lowering their costs, which wouldencourage off-grid locally generated electricity.In the final year of my undergraduate study, my thesis work was on “Numericaland Experimental Investigation of the Integrity of joints formed by Cold welding process,” inwhich I obtained an A grade. The project involved the study of joints formed when two materialsare plastically deformed and fused together at room temperature or slightly elevated temperature.I performed experimental tests as well as numerical simulations and also validated the researchwork with previously tested processes. The experimental test was carried out on Lead (Pb) – Lead(Pb) union in an extrusion process and the desired joint was achieved, since a failure test wascarried out on the welded joint which proved successful. I used the theory of plasticity to explaincold welding of the metals, the loading and the stress conditions causing plastic deformation. Iemployed a finite element three-dimensional metal forming software, DEFORM 3D, to establisha comparison with the experimental results. I analyzed with the mechanics of forming process, thedeformation history and the main field variables (e.g. stress and strain) of the cold welded joint.The finite element simulations played an important role as a first approach to predict the viabilityof the experimental test, and therefore, saving time and unnecessary costs in experimenting if thenumerical simulations revealed the process to be impracticable. The thesis work was relevant dueto the increasing application of this type of welding in contemporary manufacturing industries.Obiji Chibuikem Samuel  

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *