Training a New generation of Researchers in Offshore Seaweed Aquaculture to Produce High-value Chemicals - SeaChem

DC4 position is taken by Mohammad Hassanzadeh

Project Title: Biofilm-induced corrosion of metal structures for aquaculture application and development of adapted corrosion sensors for optimized maintenance (WP1)

Host Institution: Institut de la Corrosion (IC)

Country: France

Supervisor: Nicolas Larché (IC), PhD promoters: Raf Dewil and Barbara Rossi (KU Leuven)

Objectives: To assess the biofilm induced corrosion processes on stainless steel structures used for seaweed cultivation.

DC2 will study the influence of biofilm as encountered in seaweed aquaculture systems on microbial induced corrosion for various stainless steel grades. DC2 will carry out long term exposure tests, during which samples will be exposed to a simulated natural environment, both sterile and bacteria cultured, allowing to follow up bacterial growth and evolution of the surface appearance of the DSS samples. DC2 will complement the exposure tests by electrochemical testing. DC2 will mainly focus on the pitting and passivation behavior of the alloys by measuring the variation of open circuit potential (OCP) with time, and by potentiodynamic polarization tests in abiotic and biotic environments. DC2 will develop and test innovative corrosion sensors (adapted for stainless steel alloys). That will be combined and linked to DC3 (Mapping of corrosion around marine structures).

Expected Results: Increased knowledge on biofilm-induced corrosion of stainless steels for seaweed aquaculture application.  Adapted corrosion sensors.

Enrolment in Doctoral degree(s): KU Leuven, Arenberg Doctoral School of Science, Engineering and Technology

Planned secondments:

Host: C-CUBE, Supervisor: Guus Coolegem, Timing: M15-18, Length: 4 months, Purpose: training on measuring and predicting corrosion very precisely in offshore applications.

Host: MRP, Supervisor: Una Brosnan, Timing: M28-31, Length: 4 months, Purpose: practical and theoretical training on offshore renewable development processes and global offshore renewable markets.

Candidate Requirements:

  • You hold a master’s degree in chemical engineering, materials engineering or a related field and you thrive in a multidisciplinary research environment.
  • You have a solid knowledge of corrosion processes, including microbial corrosion.
  • You are ambitious, well organized and have excellent communication skills.
  • You speak and write fluent English and have the ability to work effectively and collaboratively.
  • You are an enthusiastic and motivated person, ready to participate in personal training, international travel and public awareness activities.
  • You have demonstrated your commitment to high quality research.


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