Internship | Electrochemical conversion of CO2. Reactor design, development and testing for novel integrated CO2



Education type

university (wo)


Internship and graduation project

Hours a week

Fulltime – 40


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The contribution of renewable energy sources in the total energy generation mix is steadily rising. One of the issues of renewable energy sources, such as solar and wind, is intermittency and therefore electricity price variation. Cheap electricity improves the business case of electrochemical production of chemicals as they usually require significant energy for chemical conversions. Additionally, electrochemical production and utilisation of renewable electricity and bio-based renewable chemicals improves significantly sustainability of the production. At TNO, we focus on the development of electrochemical conversion processes, which includes fundamental studies, followed by optimisation of the electrochemical system to industrially relevant and economically feasible conditions, techno-economic analysis and up-scaling.

What will be your role?

The purpose of the present assignment is to obtain a proof of concept on the technical feasibility of a novel CO2 conversion technology. The main focus point of the project is the evaluation of the electrolysis performance when carried out in novel type of reactors. For that, the first part of the project will consist on the design and development of a specific type of electrochemical reactor.
Several reactor configurations will be considered and their performance based on CO2 distribution and conversion efficiency will be evaluated. In order to be able to evaluate all the key performance indicators needed to assess the feasibility of the technology, an specific set-up will also be designed and constructed.

Under guidance of TNO, you will propose solutions to optimize such processes further. Working closely with experienced process engineers and electrochemists you will contribute to the process design and optimization (e.g. conversion, yield, energy consumption) of electrochemical CO2 reduction by screening several reaction conditions.

You will learn analytical techniques such as gas chromatography (GC) and high pressure liquid chromatography (HPLC) as well as electrochemical techniques such as cyclic voltammetry and chronopotentiometry or chronoamperometry.

Orderly and structured reporting and communication of the results is expected.

The ideal duration of the project is 9 months, but there are possibilities for shorter (4 to 6 months) projects as well.

How do you want to contribute to tomorrow's world? How big can your impact be? Come and work at TNO and envision it.

What we expect from you

  • You are coursing a master in a relevant field, for example chemistry, chemical engineering, mechanical engineering, etc.
  • You are familiar with the chemical process industry and can design new process concepts from scratch.
  • You are enthusiastic and eager to learn about CCU technologies.
  • Good communication skills in English, particularly for presenting your work and writing reports, is expected.
  • You can show a great deal of autonomy and have a structured approach in your work.
  • You can deal with uncertainties and a broad scope during the project.
  • You enjoy developing innovative solutions to technically challenging problems and have the right mix of intellectual curiosity and pragmatism.

What you’ll get in return

You want to work on the precursor of your career; a work placement gives you an opportunity to take a good look at your prospective future employer. TNO goes a step further. It’s not just looking that interests us; you and your knowledge are essential to our innovation. That’s why we attach a great deal of value to your personal and professional development. You will, of course, be properly supervised during your work placement and be given the scope for you to get the best out of yourself. Naturally, we provide suitable work placement compensation.

TNO as an employer

At TNO, we innovate for a healthier, safer and more sustainable life. And for a strong economy. Since 1932, we have been making knowledge and technology available for the common good. We find each other in wonder and ingenuity. We are driven to push boundaries. There is all the space and support for your talent and ambition. You work with people who will challenge you: who inspire you and want to learn from you. Our state-of-the-art facilities are there to realize your vision. What you do at TNO matters: impact makes the difference. Because with every innovation you contribute to tomorrow’s world. Read more about TNO as an employer.

The selection process

After the first CV selection, the application process will be conducted by the concerning department. TNO will provide a suitable internship agreement. If you have any questions about this vacancy, you can contact the contact person mentioned below.

Due to Covid-19 and the consequent uncertainties and restrictions, students who are not residing in the Netherlands may currently not be able to start an internship or graduation project at TNO.

Has this job opening sparked your interest?

Then we’d like to hear from you! Please contact us for more information about the job or the selection process. To apply, please upload your CV and covering letter using the ‘apply now’ button.

Contact: Elena Perez Gallent
Phone number: [email protected]

Note that applications via email and third party applications are not taken into consideration.


Apply now