NUIG 180-18, Research Assistant, NUIG 180-18, Research Assistant, College of Science and Ryan Institute

NUIG 180-18, Research Assistant, NUIG 180-18, Research Assistant, College of Science and Ryan Institute

NUI Galway

Galway, Ireland

Research Assistant

Sustainable Energy and Fuel Efficiency Spoke

College of Science and Ryan Institute

Ref. No. NUIG 180-18


To support the College of Science and the Ryan Institute Research Programme, we are seeking applications from suitably qualified candidates for a full-time, fixed term position as a Research Associate to join our team at the National University of Ireland, Galway. This position is funded for three calendar years until September 30th 2021.


Job Description:

The successful candidate will co-ordinate a research programme which will strengthen MaREI’s remit as Ireland’s national Sustainable Energy (SE) Centre, extending its technical competence by adding expertise in fuel efficiency, facilitating innovative experimentation in support of engine adaptation and advancing engine modelling techniques to improve efficient SE utilisation. It adds expertise in anaerobic digestion technologies to improve bio-methane recovery and advance development of innovative AD-based bio-refining technologies. The Sustainable Energy and Fuel Efficiency (SEFE) spoke adds technical competence in advanced thermal technologies such as pyrolysis and fluidised bed combustion, facilitating energy recovery from heterogeneous agricultural residues or municipal waste materials. Exploitation of scientific innovations requires technology integration into sustainable market applications, and SEFE will provide the process engineering expertise to integrate innovative SE technologies into efficient SE production systems, as well as the commercial and environmental expertise to address sustainability issues, market structures and commercial frameworks required to exploit Ireland’s natural SE potential. SEFE will improve MaREI’s capacity to participate in large EU programmes, to improve competitiveness in the agricultural, agri-food, forestry, marine and municipal waste sectors, enabling Ireland to better achieve its important environmental and economic objectives. This position is funded by a Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Research Professorship Award and is available immediately and until September 2021.



Main Duties include:

Project related administration:

  • Co-ordinate the Sustainable Energy and Fuel Efficiency group based in the Ryan Institute, NUI Galway under the supervision and direction of Professor Henry Curran.  

  • Assist in the recruitment of PhD, Postdoctoral and Research Fellows to work on the project.

  • The successful candidate will help support occasional undergraduate and visiting student research projects.

  • Maintain close contact with various collaborating research groups based both on and off campus.

  • Provide support in the preparation of annual reports and funding expenditure reports as required by the funder/PI.

  • Support the preparation of applications for research funding as appropriate.

  • Be responsible for coordinating progress within all strands of the SEFE Spoke, including mentoring/training of PhD and other researchers in relevant technologies.


  • Actively participate as a member in on-going research and assist Principal Investigators to conduct techno-economic analysis of energy systems.

  • Provide assistance in conducting research activities, including planning, organizing, conducting, and communicating research studies within the overall scope of the research project.

  • Coordinate and perform a variety of independent tasks and team activities involved in the collection, analysis, documentation and some interpretation of information/results.

  • Coordinate the development of forms, questionnaires and the application of qualitative and quantitative research techniques; write procedures manuals for data collection and coding.

  • Present information on research progress and outcomes to others responsible for the research project. The Research Assistant will make use of standard research techniques and methods.

  • Conduct literature and database searches and interpret and present the findings of the literature searches as appropriate.

  • Assist in analysis and interpretation of results of research.

Write up & Disseminate

  • Write up results from own research activity (e.g. as project report) for review by PI which could include preparing technical reports, conclusions and recommendations.

  • Contribute to the publication of findings.

  • Provide input into the research project’s dissemination, in whatever form (report, papers, chapters, book) as directed by the PI/project leader. Authorship should be decided in line with guidelines such as the Vancouver Protocol, or similar authorship guidelines as appropriate.

  • Present on research progress and outcomes e.g. to bodies supervising research; steering groups; other team members, as agreed with the PI/project leader.

  • Should write at least workshop level papers.

  • Attend and contribute to relevant meetings/conferences.


  • Support and, where appropriate, co-supervise the work of undergraduate students e.g. Final Year Project Students.

  • Where appropriate provide advice and / or assistance to support staff, research students.

  • May participate in limited student contact hours for own development (e.g. May deliver laboratory demonstrations, teaching laboratory test methods and demonstrating of various experiments and equipment used to undergraduates). The extent of this must not adversely impact the primary research role.



Essential Requirements:

  • An undergraduate degree relevant to SEFE research priorities in a relevant scientific or engineering discipline (preferably in Mechanical Engineering) pertaining to the energy sector.

  • Experience and proven ability to assist in the management of a research team and research projects.

  • Demonstrable track record in supporting the management of research projects.

  • Candidates must have excellent communication (in English) and organizational skills; be highly motivated and passionate about advancing research to meet Ireland’s energy and environmental challenges; and have strong documentation, oral and interpersonal skills.


Desirable Skills:

  • Experience of the Energy sector in consultancy/project development.

  • A good knowledge of energy policy and the role of new technology in meeting Irish Government and EU Energy and Climate Change objectives.

  • Evidence of experience in research funding applications, particularly organizing and preparing financial and technical reports.




Salary Scale; Research Assistant: €23,310 - €34,612 per annum (depending on experience)


NB:  Work permit restrictions may apply to this category of post.


Start date: Position is available immediately.


Further information on research and working at NUI Galway is available on Research at NUI Galway.

For information on moving to Ireland please see

Further information regarding the Ryan Institute is available at


Informal contacts concerning the post should be made to Professor Henry Curran at the following email address:


Continuing Professional Development/Training:

Researchers at NUI Galway are encouraged to avail of a range of training and development opportunities designed to support their personal career development plans.  



To Apply:

Applications to include a covering letter, CV,and the contact details of three referees should be sent, via e-mail (in word or PDF only) to Prof Henry Curran (


Please put reference numberNUIG 180-18in subject line of e-mail application.


Closing date for receipt of applications is 5.00 pm on Friday 30th November 2018.


National University of Ireland, Galway is an equal opportunity employer.


All positions are recruited in line with Open, Transparent, Merit (OTM) and Competency based recruitment.


Apply with CV and Cover Letter

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NUIG 180-18, Research Assistant, NUIG 180-18, Research Assistant, College of Science and Ryan Institute