Dr Grant Wilson BSc MEng PhD CEng AFHEA IMechE

Dr Grant Wilson

School of Chemical Engineering
Associate Professor

Contact details

School of Chemical Engineering
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Grant Wilson is an Associate Professor in Chemical Engineering with research interests in multi-vector, multi-scale data analytics, and a particular focus on the comparison of energy vectors over similar timeframes. Grant has published 14 research papers in scientific journals as well several online pieces in The Conversation.

He is focussed on the decarbonisation of heat as a significant challenge for the UK’s energy systems underpinning a net-zero society. Digging deeper into the challenges of the decarbonisation of heat – it is the flexibility of energy systems to deliver energy in space and time that defines the greatest challenges. How do we provide energy system flexibility in a low-carbon manner? How do we do this over different timescales? The Birmingham Centre for Energy Storage is researching answers to these critical questions, and the Energy Informatics Group continues to focus on bringing wider attention to this looming problem.

He is also interested in innovations in teaching and learning, and passionate about the benefits of using empirical energy data in teaching and wider outreach on the challenges of the energy transition.


  • PhD in Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Strathclyde, 2013
  • BSc (Hons) in Prosthetics and Orthotics, University of Salford, 2001
  • MEng in Manufacturing Sciences and Engineering, University of Strathclyde, 1993 


Grant Wilson started his career by completing an MEng in Manufacturing Sciences and Engineering at the University of Strathclyde. After several years in the public sector and in industry, he returned to the University of Strathclyde to undertake a PhD in 2008.

He then moved with the energy storage research group to the University of Sheffield in 2012 and undertook several roles in energy storage understanding the potential market and the sector’s strengths and research gaps in Great Britain.

Grant then became the senior researcher for the European Smart CO2 Transformation project that aimed to accelerate the penetration of CO2 derived products into various markets. Outputs from the project included a Vision document, a Strategic European Research and Innovation Agenda, and a Joint Action Plan.

In 2017, he secured funding as a researcher Co-Investigator on UKERC’s FlexiNET project, which aimed to deliver new understanding and insights on the levels of seasonal and diurnal flexibility that low carbon heating might need in Great Britain.

In August 2018 he started as a Lecturer in Chemical Engineering at the University of Birmingham.

He is passionate about public engagement about energy systems, in particular the British energy system where the data is robust.


Global Energy Technologies and Systems Masters/MSc


His research is motivated to better understand the interactions between differing energy networks, demand management, and active network management over different timescales. This is key to understanding the routes to enhance network flexibility and resilience in order to decarbonise energy systems. Long-term, reducing our use of fossil fuels brings challenges in terms of the provision of stored energy available to energy systems to provide a balance between supply and demand.

This stored energy challenge needs to be addressed to enable the energy systems to fully decarbonise, by reducing the need for stored energy, and finding lower carbon methods to store energy.

Other activities

He has secured funding from UKERC’s whole systems networking fund to develop a network for academics involved in teaching energy related modules and courses in the UK.

The network will promote the benefits of diversity for energy education.


  • Wilson, I.A.G. and Staffell, I. (2018) Rapid fuel switching from coal to natural gas through effective carbon pricing. Nature Energy, 3 (5): 365–372. doi:10.1038/s41560-018-0109-0.
  • Wilson, I.A.G., Barbour, E., Ketelaer, T., et al. (2018) An analysis of storage revenues from the time-shifting of electrical energy in Germany and Great Britain from 2010 to 2016. Journal of Energy Storage, 17: 446–456. doi:10.1016/j.est.2018.04.005.
  • Wilson, I.A.G. and Styring, P. (2017) Why Synthetic Fuels Are Necessary in Future Energy Systems. Frontiers in Energy Research, 5 (July): 1–10. doi:10.3389/fenrg.2017.00019.
  • Pandhal, J., Choon, W., Kapoore, R., Wilson, G., et al. (2017) Harvesting Environmental Microalgal Blooms for Remediation and Resource Recovery: A Laboratory Scale Investigation with Economic and Microbial Community Impact Assessment. Biology, 7 (1): 4. doi:10.3390/biology7010004.
  • Wilson, I.A.G. (2016) Energy Data Visualization Requires Additional Approaches to Continue to be Relevant in a World with Greater Low-Carbon Generation. Frontiers in Energy Research, 4 (August): 33. doi:10.3389/fenrg.2016.00033.
  • Barbour, E., Wilson, G., Hall, P., et al. (2014) Can negative electricity prices encourage inefficient electrical energy storage devices? International Journal of Environmental Studies, 71 (6): 862–876. doi:10.1080/00207233.2014.966968.
  • Barbour, E., Wilson, I.A.G., Gill, S., et al. (2013) Maximising revenue for non-firm distributed wind generation with energy storage in an active management scheme. IET Renewable Power Generation, 7 (5): 421–430. doi:10.1049/iet-rpg.2012.0036.
  • Wilson, I.A.G., Rennie, A.J.R., Ding, Y., et al. (2013) Historical daily gas and electrical energy flows through Great Britain’s transmission networks and the decarbonisation of domestic heat. Energy Policy, 61: 301–305. doi:10.1016/j.enpol.2013.05.110.
  • Barbour, E., Wilson, I.A.G., Bryden, I.G., et al. (2012) Towards an objective method to compare energy storage technologies: Development and validation of a model to determine the upper boundary of revenue available from electrical price arbitrage. Energy and Environmental Science, 5 (1): 5425–5436. doi:10.1039/c2ee02419e.
  • Wilson, I.A.G., McGregor, P.G., Infield, D.G., et al. (2011) Grid-connected renewables, storage and the UK electricity market. Renewable Energy, 36 (8): 2166–2170. doi:10.1016/j.renene.2011.01.007.
  • Hall, P.J., Mirzaeian, M., Fletcher, S.I., Wilson I.A.G. et al. (2010) Energy storage in electrochemical capacitors: Designing functional materials to improve performance. Energy and Environmental Science, 2010,3, 1238-1251, doi:10.1039/c0ee00004c.
  • Wilson, I.A.G., McGregor, P.G. and Hall, P.J. (2010) Energy storage in the UK electrical network: Estimation of the scale and review of technology options. Energy Policy, 38 (8): 4099–4106. doi:10.1016/j.enpol.2010.03.036.

View all publications in research portal


energy data; energy digitalisation; energy and AI; energy and machine learning; energy for heat; energy; decarbonisation; energy timeseries analysis; energy systems; local energy systems; energy flexibility; energy systems flexibility; energy demand forecasting