Institute for the Development of Energy for African Sustainability (IDEAS)

Research and Technology Development

Our consulting and research expertise includes:

Process Synthesis and Design 

IDEAS offers world leading expertise in the area of process synthesis. These tools can be used to optimise existing processes, or in conceptual designs of new processes. We have more than fifteen years’ experience in the field of coal/natural gas/biomass/waste to liquid fuel processes via Fischer-Tropsch technologies (XTL) and have undertaken projects in bio-ethanol and biodiesel production.

Fischer-Tropsch Catalysis 

IDEAS has over 15 years of experience in the development, characterisation and testing of catalyst for a wide range of processes, most notably for Fischer-Tropsch applications.

Separation Systems Design 

IDEAS has developed a unique set of analytical and laboratory tools for short-cut Vapour-Liquid-Equilibrium (VLE) and Liquid-Liquid-Equilibrium (LLE) measurement and the design and analysis of separation systems, including membrane separation, complex distillation for crude refining, and reactive separation systems. 

Reactor System Design (Attainable Regions)

As the main contributor to the development of this internationally recognised process optimisation method, IDEAS has the expertise to design your process on the basis of fundamental processes. 

Biochemical Processes / Biotechnology

In partnership with leading molecular and cellular biologists we offer a range of solutions and expertise in the area of biological remediation, bio-fuel production and biological pest control.


Using the Discrete Element Method (DEM) we can model the performance of milling equipment, conveyor belts, transfer chutes and storage bins. The Attainable Region approach used for chemical reactor optimisation has been used for comminution and is showing much promise for optimising the operation of these systems. We also carry out research in froth flotation. Our research covers areas such as coarse particle flotation, improving recovery across the froth and developing novel methods to quantify froth phase sub-processes including bubble sizes, bubble coalescence.

Last modified: 2020/03/05