Meet our newly promoted colleague - Dr Susana García



To celebrate the contributions made by our newly promoted academic colleagues, we invited some of them to tell us a little bit about themselves. 

In this instalment of the series, we caught up with Dr. Susana García, Associate Professor in Chemical Engineering at the Institute of Mechanical, Process and Energy Engineering at Heriot-Watt University, which she joined in May 2014.

Susana is currently also the Associate Director in Carbon Capture and Storage at the Research Centre for Carbon Solutions (RCCS), an interdisciplinary world leading engineering centre, inspiring and delivering innovation for the wider deployment of technologies needed to meet necessary carbon targets.

Climate Change caused by the increase of carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere is now in the news on a daily basis. Susana's research passion is to use her expertise in the design and development of processes using advanced materials to capture the carbon, and hence avoid carbon dioxide emission in the atmosphere and help save the planet. Even in a world in which we do not rely on fossil fuels, making steel, cement, and many other chemical processes still emit carbon dioxide. She leads the development of processes and novel materials to remove the gas from all those industries: “We, as chemical engineers, need to develop the tools to find solutions for these important problems of our society, and I am very proud that we at RCCS play a leading role in this development.”

Susana's recent research focusses on the development of experimental setups to determine the efficiency of carbon capture processes. These setups provide sufficiently reliable process data using small quantities of materials, which has been a major challenge for the scientific community. She is now directing an international research program involving groups from the US, Norway, and Switzerland, and said of the collaboration, “It makes me proud that these top universities in the world want RCCS to lead this international effort.” This is just one example in which her leadership and novel approaches have strengthened RCCS research strategy, helping in effectively promoting RCCS as an internationally recognised centre of engineering excellence.

She is also a very active member of the Chemical Engineering Discipline and has contributed to University management for several years by leading and organising the Chemical Engineering Open Days and Applicant Visit Days, amongst other duties. As an academic leader and role model at Heriot-Watt, she guides and tutors undergraduate students, mentors Early Career Researchers and provides advice on their personal development.

“I'm delighted that my hard work and contribution to HWU Research and Teaching Strategic objectives has been recognized with this promotion. It is motivating and encouraging to be part of the vibrant atmosphere at HWU, with global reach and a proud history of providing access to education, ideas and solutions that make a real contribution to the world.”