A leading scientific and technology research organisation, implementing projects throughout Africa and making a difference in people’s lives currently has a vacancy for a Principal Researcher/ Engineer in the Bio-refinery and Forest Products Research Group within the Natural Resources and Environment Unit. The position is located in Durban, South Africa.
The ideal candidate will have a doctoral degree in a related field, preferably Chemistry or Chemical Engineering with at least seven years of experience and competence in research related to the research group focus. Good background experience in biomass processing for industrial applications, experience in technology development and transfer, techno-economic and process modelling skills and experience, evidence of a national or preferably international research profile and associated network.
The role is focused on developing new knowledge, technologies and human capital to enable renewed development in the forest and waste biomass sectors that aligns with a green economy transition in South Africa and the Region. The R&D focuses on three interconnected areas:
Chemical fractionation technologies to create more diverse and valuable raw materials from biomass.
Technologies to create products from waste biomass or biomass by-products.
Cleaner and more efficient technologies/ methods that improve the competitiveness of the forest products sector.
Job description / core competencies:
- Perform independent research focused on biorefinery technology opportunities and the needs of the forest products and biomass sector in South Africa and the region.
- Lead and contribute to the development of new and adapted technologies for licencing, patenting and transfer to new and existing industries.
- Publish and present research findings in high impact peer-review journals and at national and international conferences.
- Mentor and supervise junior researchers and post-graduate students.
- Write proposals and project definitions and research business plans.
- Conceptualise, lead and deliver on multi-disciplinary and multi-stakeholder projects and programmes.
- Secure funds for research and technology development projects.
- Contribute and assist to lead in strategic planning within the research group and engage in unit and R&D strategy development.
- Work together with the team on projects and contribute to good operations, financial and quality management.
- Assist to build and develop the research networks, collaborations and industry partnerships.
Job Qualification & Experience:
- A doctoral degree in a related field, preferably Chemistry or Chemical Engineering;
- At least seven years of experience and competence in research related to the research group focus;
- Good background experience in biomass processing for industrial applications;
- Experience in technology development and transfer;
- Techno-economic and process modelling skills and experience;
- Evidence of a national, but preferably international, research profile and associated network;
- Proven ability to motivate and obtain funding for contract research;
- Proven contract and project management experience on medium to large-scale projects, preferably multi-disciplinary research and development projects;
- A good track record of research outputs published in peer-reviewed journals and conference proceedings.
Africa’s premier research and knowledge organisation offering fast-tracked career development through further advanced studies and the career satisfaction of creating the innovations and technology of tomorrow. They pride themselves on being a world-class African research and development organisation that is geared to solving Africa’s and South Africa’s problems today and in the future. They undertake directed, multidisciplinary research and technological innovation that contributes to the improved quality of life of South Africans and Africans. The key issues that they address through various interventions include: creating a vibrant economy and employment opportunities as well as contributing to the development of economic and social infrastructure like transport, energy, water resources and ICT networks. They look for the smartest, highly-skilled and highly-educated in their respected fields and ensure that all their programs and initiatives are well-supported and well-funded. In this research-driven, innovative, dream-big environment, the stellar career path they offer will ensure exposure to different industries and partners as well as the finest research and conference invitations both locally and internationally.
This advert is being advertised in collaboration with our recruitment partner MCHIR.
Principal Researcher Engineer: Bio-refinery and Forest Products, Durban – Ref: 1027279-9
Principal Researcher Engineer
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