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Sustainability in focus when the Graduate School took off

Published: 12 October 2021

Almost a year ago, one of Luleå University of Technology's new future areas, Creaternity, was inaugurated. Creaternity includes around 100 researchers from 25 different research subjects with the common goal of using digitalisation to achieve a circular use of materials, efficient energy use and, through it, a carbon dioxide- and resource-neutral society. The Creaternity Graduate School has now had its digital kick-off and the research projects have officially started.

When Creaternity advertised doctoral positions for their 12 research projects, they received more than 1,000 applicants from different parts of the world. The supervisors have now accepted 13 PhD students who will work in a wide range of subjects: from more efficient batteries, fiber composites to recycling space debris and new business models. In their research projects, the doctoral students also work together with companies such as ABB, Gestamp HardTech, Komatsu Forest and Volvo CE to ensure that the research is transformed into practical benefit as much as possible.

During the kick-off, the participants presented themselves and their projects. They also linked the UN's Global goals (see above) to their respective research projects, evaluating on which of the goals their particular project focuses. During autumn, a sustainability course will help the PhD students to further analyse how their projects address the global goals. The course is a collaboration between Chalmers University of Technology, Linköping University and Luleå University of Technology.

– It has been a rewarding day and great to finally meet our doctoral students who come from different countries and different subject areas. We are glad that they are here and will realise what was planned, together with their teams. It is an impressive group, says Anna Öhrwall Rönnbäck, who leads the graduate school together with Johan Carlson.

These projects are now underway with a total of 13 doctoral students within Creaternity's Graduate School:

  1. Sustainable solid-state lithium-ion batteries
  2. Additively manufactured materials using ultrasound (QCAM)
  3. Waste recycling in infrastructure development and industry
  4. Sustainable energy efficient hybrid composites (SEEDS)
  5. Modularity-based business models enabled by digitization
  6. Circular nuclear energy through advanced materials research
  7. Space debris: reuse of satellite material
  8. Additive manufactured products – toward a digital twin
  9. Norrland Eco-Concrete – Using wood production ash for ecological concrete
  10. Energy and nutrient local food production (ENSYM)

Next step is to seek additional funding for more projects within Creaternity's Graduate School to be able to announce a new round of doctoral positions in the spring of 2022.