Showing posts from 2011

PTDF 2012/2013 applications out now

Undergraduate, Masters' and PhD application forms are out for the 2012/2013 national and overseas scholarships. There's also a new one called the Split PhD, and you can get more information about it from the PTDF website. A word of advice: Make sure your proposals are relevant to the oil and gas industry eh. Be blessed. I would also suggest you try to get the scratch cards from First Bank head offices asap, and forget the online verve card option, as this didn't work (for me). Cheers!

Fighting tooth decay... without the pain

The Chemistry department of the University of Leeds has discovered a new way to bypass those frightful encounters with the dentist's drilling machine when tooth decay bores. According to the researchers, "...their solution is to arm dentists with a peptide-based fluid that is literally painted onto the tooth's surface. The peptide technology is based on knowledge of how the tooth forms in the first place and stimulates regeneration of the tooth defect. This may sound too good to be true, but we are essentially helping acid-damaged teeth to regenerate themselves. It is a totally natural non-surgical repair process and is entirely pain-free too," said Professor Jennifer Kirkham, from the University of Leeds Dental Institute, who has led development of the new technique. The 'magic' fluid was designed by researchers in the University of Leeds' School of Chemistry, led by Dr Amalia Aggeli. It contains a peptide known as P 11-4 that -under certain conditions

(Very) Much Ado About Fracking...

The quest for affordable energy fuels continues as scientists consider the pros and cons of hydraulic fracturing or 'fracking', a process in which natural gas and oil from shales is extracted by high pressure impaction of shales with a sand-chemical-water mixture. Sounds reasonable enough until you consider the fact that recent earthquakes in some parts of the UK as well as groundwater contamination might be linked to the recent increase in fracking activities. You might want to read up on it very briefly here (or watch a very good video about it), and then listen in on what the critics and concerned citizens are saying about it here and here . At any rate, more research on fracking is under-way.

Getting paid to power your home...

...using renewable sources, that is. The power and transport sectors are two of the largest contributors to rising CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions (as shown in the World greenhouse gas emission chart by WRI). A great deal of research has been conducted on ways to reduce these emissions in the transport sector-- automobile companies have improved on spark ignition and diesel engine designs so that they can run on less fuel; some other companies have designed hybrid engines and fuel cell (PEMFC) engines, although there still remains an obvious gap between many governments' targets and what is on ground. The power production sector is also making 'green' progress by looking into solar, wind, tidal and bioenergy (i.e. combined heat and power (CHP), anaerobic digestion) systems to generate cleaner electricity and heat. It is not always easy to incorporate these renewable energy systems (due to problems highlighted in an ea

The Problem with Renewable Energy Systems…

Renewable energy systems are certainly the way forward globally- they are much cleaner alternatives to petroleum, coal, oil shale and other fossil fuels, and as their name implies, they won’t run out since they are capable of being replenished. However, the big gloomy “but” is this: renewable energy systems (solar, wind, tidal, bioenergy) are irregular. For example, wind energy's frequency and speed is dependent on several factors including the nature of the location (e.g.‘roughness’ factors- the presence of buildings or trees affects wind turbulence), rotation of the earth (Coriolis effect).  Furthermore, the ongoing debate of ‘cassava/corn/sugar cane for belle (stomach) or cassava/corn/sugar cane for moto (automobile)?’ has made the concept of generating electricity from biomass a lot less attractive. Basically, the world is in a tight spot- keep using fossil fuels and watch carbon dioxide emissions climb beyond 390 ppm, leading to more trapped heat within our immediate atmosp


Edmond Bryne and John Fitzpatrick of the University College Cork, Ireland, are of the opinion that the subject of sustainability should not just be relegated to certain one-off modules, but should be woven into the fabric of school curricula, and advise educators to act duly in their article, Chemical Engineering in an unsustainable world: Obligations and opportunities .

Torrefaction: "Wood is the new coal"

Today I'll be talking about the benefits of torrefaction (brief video here ). Torrefaction of biomass as well as waste material such as old tyres and food waste tackles two major issues: waste management in both developing and developed nations, and carbon dioxide emission reduction. How? Good question. Ever since countries like Denmark, Sweden , and others rich in forestry residue successfully implemented co-firing (that is, the generation of heat and/or electricity for citizens by the combustion of coal and biomass), other nations such as the UK have well embraced this technology. A major problem however, is that biomass is not that good. Its energy density is considerably lower than that of coal, and it possesses a high moisture content, is difficult to transport, among other problems. So when the torrefaction idea came along, it seemed like a well nice intervention at the right time. Want to find out more? Head on here for a start, then!

PTDF Past Questions 4

Hello my people! How was your MSc PTDF exam two weeks ago? (26th March ko)? Trust it went strangely enough :) Apologies to the Owerri people who couldn't write the exam. I am wondering if anyone has copies of the questions you answered, so I can upload it here for future PTDF applicants. You can email them to me at Thanks much, and I bite my nails in anticipation of the results with you all! Click on the document to magnify it:

PTDF MSc Past Questions 2004/2005

If you have 20/20 vision you just might be able to read it when you click: CORRECTIONS/ANSWERS TO SOME OF THE OBJECTIVE QUESTIONS (Answers mine, so feel free to verify) 2004/2005 5. Yes, 230V, 50Hz 6. closest answer B (I got 100/9 hrs) 7. NNPC formed in 1977, so no idea 9. North American Indians 10. 27th Sept. 2003 11. Spirit 12. Dubai? 14. No idea yet 16. Maybe. 15th of Jan is Nigerian Armed Forces Rememberance Day (yet to confirm). 19. LC? 24. Pakistan created in 1947 25. Roger Bannister 26. He was first elected in 1990 27. Yes, 1990. This year (2010), marks his 20th year of freedom. (Note: OPEC is celebrating its 50th year this 2010; 1960 - 2010) 29. Yes, revived in 1896 (it really began in Greece in the 9th century). 31. Australia

PTDF MSc Past Questions

I see that there is some interest in the PTDF MSc Past Questions section of this blog (naturally) so here are a few past questions. The 2010 exam was the first internet-based (hence objective-based) exam; these others are theory-based. They should give you a heads-up still: PART THREE SECTION F (2002) ANSWER ALL QESTIONS TIME ALLOWED: 55 MINUTES 1.Define the following terms: i. Petroleum ii. Bitumen iii. Formation Volume Factor iv. Structural Closure v. Porosity vi. Kerogen 2. In what ways can organic matter diagenesis be monitored? 3. Classify the following porosity types into primary and secondary: Chalky, Fracture, Intercrystal, Fenestral, Moldic and Intraparticle. 4. Briefly describe and classify the following types of traps: i. Normal fault ii. Buttress sand iii. Rollover anticline on growth fault iv. Compaction anticline 5. Indicate which of the following possible answers are true ( there may be more than one). a) if a