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Explore the drop down lists below to find out more about current PhD studentships. 

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PhD Studentship in Additives for EV Lubrications (Dr Janet Wong)

Supervisor: Janet Wong

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of Additives for EV lubrications leading to the award of a PhD degree.  The post is supported by a bursary and fees (at the UK student rate) provided by Shell UTC. To be eligible for support, applicants must be “UK Residents” as defined by EPSRC. 

This project is a part of a large effort for our zero transition initiatives. Our goal is to design the best coolant and lubricant for EV through a fundamental understanding on how we may control the behaviour of additives under the influence of an electric field. This has a direct impact on the performance and reliability of EV. Ultimately, we aim to revolutionise lubricant technology by creating smart, responsive lubricants that can lubricate on demand!

In this experimental project, the PhD researcher will examine how an application of an electric field affects the behaviour of various additives. This will involve both fundamental and applied studies. The researcher will design experimental setup that allows various additives properties to be measured in situ and in real time during rubbing. This will allow a direct correlation between additive behaviour and tribological performance of a lubricant. The project will also be supplemented using other techniques, include advanced laser spectroscopies, and various surface and chemical characterisation techniques.

This project will be based at Imperial College with regular interaction with our project partners. The PhD researcher will be a part of the Shell UTC and the Tribology Group. It offers a vibrant, multidisciplinary and multicultural working environment. Laboratories were recently refurbished and are well equipped with an extensive range of instrumentation and extensive computer facilities.

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. You will hold, or be expected to achieve, a Master’s degree or a 4-year undergraduate degree at 2:1 level (or above) in a relevant subject, e.g. Chemical or Mechanical Engineering, Materials, Chemistry, Physics or a related field. You will have an enquiring, rigorous and hands-on approach to research, together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. An interest in experimental work and development is essential, as are good team-working, observational and communication skills.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanicalengineering

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post contact Dr Janet Wong (j.wong@imperial.ac.uk). Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae.  Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: until post filled

PhD Studentship in Aircraft Engine Aeroelasticity (Dr Sina Stapelfeldt)

Supervisor: Sina Stapelfeldt

Deadline for applying: until post filled

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of Turbomachinery Aeroelasticity, leading to the award of a PhD degree.  The post is supported by a bursary and fees (at the UK student rate) provided by the EPSRC. EPSRC candidates should fulfil the eligibility criteria for the award. 

The research involves the investigation of stall flutter of modern low-speed fan blades. Stall flutter is an aeroelastic instability which occurs when the fan is operating off-design and flow over the blade is partially separated. It leads to high vibration amplitudes and in the worst case, blade failure. The work will investigate this instability using computational fluid dynamics. It will largely rely on the application of an in-house CFD solver to simulate flutter and determine driving factors. Development of customised data processing tools, and potentially modification of the in-house solver, will be required. The research is performed in collaboration with Rolls-Royce plc and includes an industrial placement.   

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. You will have a 1st class honours degree in mechanical engineering or a related subject, and an enquiring and rigorous approach to research together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. An interest in aerodynamics is essential and programming skills are advantageous. Good team-working, observational and communication skills are essential.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

https://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/research/

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post contact Dr Sina Stapelfeldt, s.stapelfeldt@imperial.ac.uk +44 (0)20 7594 7076. Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Dr Sina Stapelfeldt. Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: until post filled

PhD Studentship in Characterisation Grain Microstructures in Metals using Ultrasound (Dr Bo Lan, Prof Mike Lowe)

This studentship is run from the FIND-CDT based at the University of Bristol. 

More information can be found on the FIND-CDT website. 

PhD Studentship in Development of Dynamic Fracture Testing Techniques for Alloys (Dr Paul Hooper)

Supervisors:  Dr Paul Hooper paul.hooper@imperial.ac.uk and Dr Catrin Davies catrin.davies@imperial.ac.uk 

Industrial Supervisor(s):Dr Mike Cox (AWE) Dr Giles Aldrich-Smith (AWE)

Deadline for applying: until post filled

Background

The effect of loading rates is known to affect the mechanical properties of alloys, especially the yield strength and fracture toughness. Tests performed under quasi-static conditions can be non-conservative for predicting the structural integrity of structures which may experience high speed loading scenarios in service. As loading rates increase, the yield strength increases which can cause a reduction in fracture toughness (cleavage) on the lower shelf, whereas on the upper shelf of the ductile to brittle transition curve, an increase in loading rates could mean an increase in tearing toughness. The order of magnitude of the stress intensity factor rate experienced by a flaw in a structure depends on the type of service. The rate during mechanical testing should be within the order of magnitude expected in service.

It is therefore necessary to define size independent fracture parameters in sub-size fracture toughness specimens to characterise full-thickness behaviour. On the lower shelf (brittle fracture), the Master Curve is employed to define the characteristic temperature T0 which can then predict the equivalent behaviour at different material thicknesses or temperatures. For the upper shelf (ductile fracture), the initiation fracture toughness, from a tearing resistance curve (R-curve) is considered size independent. However, defining an R-curve under high very high-speed loading is extremely challenging. The methods used under quasi-static loading, such as pausing and unloading tests at predefined displacements thus crack extension, do not work at high speed. If the specimen fully fractures during the test, then a final crack length cannot be defined for applications in methods such as the normalisation method. To define a high-speed R-curve requires the design and development of a method to load a compact tension (CT) or single edge notch bend (SENB) specimen very fast but to a fixed displacement to prevent the specimen fully fracturing into 2 pieces so that a final tearing level can be defined.

 

Aims and Objectives

The aims of this project are to understand the influence of strain rate and sample size/constraint on the fracture toughness of nuclear grade A508 forged steel in addition to Ti-6Al-4V manufactured through laser powder bed fusion. This will be achieved through the following objectives:

• Literature review of standard test methods for high strain rate fracture testing and size scale effects on fracture

• Development of a novel rig for high strain rate fracture testing (At the high-speeds required for this programme, means it will not be possible to stop the for the cross-head and test programme will require a rig incorporating shear pins to limit the load while protecting the machine)

• Develop the dynamic fracture testing techniques on the alloys of interest

• Determine the strain rate sensitivity of the fracture behaviour of the alloys considered.

• Develop finite element models and analytical technique to interpret the results obtained.

Eligibility

This PhD will be part of the new Centre for Doctoral Training in Nuclear Energy and will be funded for 4 years in partnership with AWE. To be eligible for a full award a student must have been ordinarily resident in the UK for at least 3 years prior to the start of the studentship.

 Closing date: until post filled

PhD Studentship in Development of Human Gastric Process Computational Models for the Design of Foods... (Prof. Maria Charalambides)

Supervisor: Prof Maria Charalambides

Deadline for applying: until post filled

The Food Consortium CTP is looking for a PhD candidate for the BBSRC funded project “Development of Human Gastric Process Computational Models for the Design of Foods with Optimised Nutrient Uptake and Satiety” based at the Department of Mechanical Engineering, Imperial College London.

The Food Consortium CTP comprises four major food manufacturers together with the largest UK-based independent science and technology provider and trainer for the food industry (Campden BRI), and the Haydn Green Institute (Nottingham University Business School).

This industry-led collaborative programme will develop highly skilled PhD researchers and provide an innovation ecosystem through collaboration and partnership. As a successful PhD candidate you will be part of a larger cohort of students with the opportunity to form strong links to industry and be part of a supportive network of peers, academic supervisors, industrial supervisors and training partners.

Business facing training will include concepts and issues to consider when commercialising early-stage science and technology, using tools to help evaluate innovation and commercialisation strategies.

About the Project

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of Mechanics of Materials leading to the award of a PhD degree.

The evolution of food structure within the human digestive tract influences drastically the metabolism and health of individuals. Food breakdown is strongly linked to glycaemic index, whilst it also impacts appetite regulation. Mechanistic understanding of the relationship between food structural mechanics, the gastrointestinal (GI) tract motility and digestion is still lacking. Specifically, the breakdown of the food structure under the effect of the mechanical loads due to the gastric peristaltic waves, the associated hydration from gastric fluids and the chemical degradation through the enzymatic action need to be investigated. The project aims at developing a novel computational platform for food product design to control food disintegration and nutrient bio-accessibility and consequently the digestion efficiency; the output from this research will have a great impact on both the food industry and public health. It will be a continuation of current work in the Soft Solids group (e.g. Skamniotis et al., 2020, Eulerian-Lagrangian finite element modelling of food flow-fracture in the stomach to engineer digestion, Innovative Food Science & Emerging Technologies, 66, 1466-8564).

Entry Requirements

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. Candidates are expected to hold (or be about to obtain) a minimum upper second class honours degree (or equivalent) in mechanical engineering or a related subject with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. An interest in Mechanics of Materials is essential.  Good team-working, observational and communication skills are essential. Equality, diversity and inclusion is fundamental to the success of the programme.  The full Equality, diversity and inclusion plan for the Food Consortium is available on request.

The Food Consortium CTP studentships are predominantly open to students with established UK residency. Although international students (including EU countries) can apply, due to funding rules no more than 30% of the projects can be allocated to international students. The funding will include a tax free stipend (currently minimum £18,062 per year), support for tuition fees at the standard UK rate (currently £4,596 per year) and a contribution towards research costs.

How To Apply

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

https://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/research/mechanics-of-materials/composites-adhesives-and-soft-solids/soft-solids/projects/

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post contact Prof Maria Charalambides. m.charalambides@imperial.ac.uk  +44 (0)20 75947246. Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Prof Charalambides.  Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: until post filled

PhD Studentship in Development of more sustainable and healthier food products (Prof. Maria Charalambides)

Supervisor: Prof Maria Charalambides

Deadline for applying: 30 June 2023

Applications are invited for a Joint research studentship with the Centre for Doctoral Training in Advanced Characterisation of Materials in the field of Mechanics of Soft Solids/Rheology leading to the award of a PhD degree.  The post is supported by a bursary and fees (at the UK student rate) provided by the EPSRC and is co-sponsored by Nestle. 

The increasing demand for foods with reduced sugar and the use of more sustainable ingredients has led the food industry to change formulations whilst also aiming to maintain the desirable sensorial and textural characteristics of the foods to satisfy the consumer. Significant research on this topic has already taken place in the Department of Mechanical Engineering in conjunction with industry which highlighted the effect of the formulation and microstructure on the food’s breakdown during the oral process and its link to sensorial attributes for texture as well as flavour. For chocolate specifically, experimental as well as modelling studies showed that the microstructure impacts on the fragmentation during the first bite, which increases the available surface area that can come into contact with the oral sensory receptors. Furthermore, specific patterns of fragmentation impact the subsequent chain of events including the melting process, the rheological response of the food bolus (mass of food formed in the mouth after chewing and mixing with saliva) as well as the tribological response between the food and the oral surfaces. In this PhD project we will concentrate on the food bolus formation stage of the oral process. Specifically, we will investigate how reduced sugar and the incorporation of more sustainable ingredients impact the rheology, flow and melting of the food bolus. As a result of this research, new and more sustainable food products with enhanced and controlled sensorial attributes will be designed, with a positive impact on human diet and health.

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. You will have a 1st or 2.1 class honours degree in mechanical engineering or a related subject, and an enquiring and rigorous approach to research together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits.  Good team-working, observational and communication skills are essential.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

https://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/research/

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For information on the centre for doctoral training visit the website

https://www.cdt-acm.org/ 

For further details of the post contact Prof Maria Charalambides (m.charalambides@imperial.ac.uk)  +44 (0)20 75947246.  Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae and a cover letter to Prof Charalambides, Department of Mechanical Engineering.  Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: 30th June 2023

PhD studentship in High-fidelity modelling of clad ballooning during a loss-of-coolant accident (Dr Mike Bluck)

Supervisors: Dr Michael Bluck (Mechanical Engineering), Dr Mark Wenman (Materials)

Deadline for applying: until post filled

Applications are invited for a PhD research studentship in the field of high-fidelity modelling of clad ballooning in nuclear reactor loss-of-coolant accidents.  The post is supported by a bursary and fees (at the UK/EU student rate) provided by the EPSRC and the National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL). Candidates should fulfil the eligibility criteria for the award. Please check your suitability.

The loss-of-coolant accident (LOCA) is generally the limiting design-basis accident in a LWR. In the event of such an accident, the fission chain reaction is automatically shutdown, however there remains ‘decay heat’ generation, perhaps 7% of operating power, for some hours following the accident. Removal of this decay heat requires that sufficient coolant can be brought into the core, and that the core, during this time, retains a "coolable geometry". This is not guaranteed - excessively hot, internally pressurised fuel pins can deform - so called ‘clad ballooning’ - and possibly form blockages to the flow. 

A major focus of the reactor safety case is therefore to ensure that the consequences of a LOCA are manageable. To do so, we must understand and model both the complex mechanical behaviour of the fuel and outer cladding, and the coolant flow over the fuel pins. Indeed, these effects are strongly interdependent.

The aim is to develop a state-of-the-art computer code system to predict the 3-D clad ballooning behaviour of rods in a light water reactor (LWR) fuel bundle during a loss-of-coolant accident (LOCA). The code system will involve the dynamic coupling of a state-of-the-art 3-D fuel rod performance code with a state-of-the-art 3-D thermal-hydraulics code, will be validated using experimental data, and will be demonstrated for an LWR fuel assembly. 

The position is a collaboration between the Nuclear Engineering Group within the Mechanical Engineering Department and the Engineering Alloys Group within the Department of Materials. This PhD is funded by the UKRI/EPSRC and the UK National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL).

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. You will have a 1st class or 2:1 honours degree in mechanical engineering or a related subject, and an enquiring and rigorous approach to research together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. An interest in fracture mechanics is essential.  Good team-working, observational and communication skills are essential.

Find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area:

Department of Mechanical Engineering

Department of Materials

More information on how to apply

Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Dr Michael Bluck, m.bluck@imperial.ac.uk.  Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: until post filled 

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PhD Studentship in High-Rate Fracture of Forged and 3D-printed Metallic Alloys (Dr Paul Hooper)

Supervisor: Dr Paul Hooper

Deadline for applying: 30 September 2021

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of fracture and high strain-rate materials characterisation, leading to the award of a PhD degree.  The post is supported by a bursary and fees (at the UK/EU student rate) provided by AWE plc.

This PhD project aims to advance our understanding of the influence of strain rate and sample size on the fracture toughness of nuclear grade A508 forged steel and 3D printed Ti-6Al-4V manufactured through laser powder bed fusion. Strain rate is known to affect the mechanical properties of alloys, especially the yield strength and fracture toughness. Conventional fracture toughness methods used under quasi-static loading, such as pausing and unloading tests at predefined displacements do not work at high-speed. This leads to uncertainty in predicting the structural integrity of structures which may experience high speed loading scenarios in service. In this PhD you will develop innovative high-speed experimental methods to overcome the limitations of the established quasi-static approach. This will include the design and development of a method to load a compact tension (CT), or single edge notch bend (SENB) specimen, at high-speed (>10 m/s) to a fixed displacement to prevent the specimen fully fracturing into 2 pieces. You will learn to use high-speed photography and apply techniques to measure sample deformation. Alongside the experimental aspects of this project, you will also develop finite element models and analytical techniques to gain further insight into the results obtained. You will also have the opportunity to travel to and present your work at international conferences.

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. You will have a 1st class or 2.1 honours degree in mechanical engineering or a related subject, and an enquiring and rigorous approach to research together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. Practical engineering, problem-solving and computational abilities are key skills for this PhD project. Good team-working, observational and communication skills are essential.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/mechanicalengineering

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post contact Dr Paul Hooper paul.hooper@imperial.ac.uk or Dr Catrin Davies catrin.davies@imperial.ac.uk. Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Dr Paul Hooper.  Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: 30th September 2021

PhD Studentship in High-strain Rate Tensile Testing of Soft and Energetic Materials (Dr Paul Hooper)

Supervisor:  Dr Paul Hooper

Deadline for applying: 30 September 2021

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of high strain-rate materials characterisation, leading to the award of a PhD degree. The post is supported by a bursary and fees (at the UK/EU student rate) provided by AWE plc.

This PhD project aims to develop innovative experimental methods to measure the stress-strain response of soft materials at high strain-rates.  Although the testing of metallic samples under these conditions is fairly mature, measuring the properties of softer materials (such as organic materials and polymer bonded explosives) is much more challenging. Dynamic loading of soft materials is challenging due mismatch in stiffness between the samples and loading fixture. Even holding the sample in place can be difficult due to their low stiffness and tendency to deform under their own weight. These difficulties can give rise to large uncertainties in measurements of mechanical properties in soft materials, especially in non-compressive loading. In this PhD you will advance the state-of-the-art to overcome these limitations through the development of novel dynamic testing equipment at strain-rates of 1,000/s (faster than a car crash) and above. The approach taken will be a miniaturised Split Hopkinson Pressure Bar (SHPB) design that will enable testing of soft materials that are difficult to prepare into test specimens and introducing a high level of automation into the test procedure to reduce or eliminate operator variability. You will learn to use high-speed photography (think The Slow Mo Guys) to measure sample deformation and investigate the effects connection arrangement between the loading bars and sample. You will also have the opportunity to develop finite element models to further our understanding of testing these materials at high-strain rates and to travel and present your work at international conferences.

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. You will have a 1st class or 2.1 honours degree in mechanical engineering or a related subject, and an enquiring and rigorous approach to research together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. Practical engineering and problem-solving abilities are key skills for this PhD project. Good team-working, observational and communication skills are essential.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/mechanicalengineering

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post contact Dr Paul Hooper paul.hooper@imperial.ac.uk. Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Dr Paul Hooper.  Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: 30th September 2021

PhD Studentship in In-situ Monitoring for Additive Manufacturing (Dr Paul Hooper)

Supervisors: Dr Paul Hooper

Deadline for applying: 30 September 2021

Do you want to be at the forefront of the next industrial revolution? We have an opportunity for you to develop additive manufacturing (AM) technology for real-world engineering applications.

We are inviting applications for a research studentship in the field of In-situ Monitoring for Additive Manufacturing (3D printing), leading to the award of a PhD degree. The post is supported by a bursary and fees (at the UK/EU student rate) provided by Rolls-Royce plc.

AM is changing how products are designed and made, enabling better performing and more efficient products with reduced manufacturing waste, lower cost and shorter lead times. It is a key emerging technology in many sectors, including aerospace, nuclear and medical, and will increasingly provide benefits to the economy, environment, and wider society. This PhD project will focus on developing and validating methods to qualify AM parts for applications with a high consequence of failure. The project will use in-situ monitoring tools to observe the laser/material interaction in the metal laser powder bed fusion (LPBF) build process, analyse large-volumes of collected data and establish to what extent this approach can replace more traditional post-manufacture inspection methods. You will gain hands on experience with the LPBF process, state-of-the-art high-speed and infrared imaging systems, and conventional characterisation/inspection equipment. You will also be applying machine learning and statistical methods to analyse large data sets and make robust decisions about the quality of a printed component. There will be opportunities to travel to and present your work at international conferences and spend time with the sponsoring organisation. Ultimately, you will be seeking to answer the question “can in-situ monitoring technology be used to accelerate the qualification of AM components?”.

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. You will have a 1st class or 2.1 honours degree in mechanical engineering, physics or a related subject, and an enquiring and rigorous approach to research together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. Practical engineering and problem-solving abilities are key skills for this PhD project. Experience with 3D printing, Python/MATLAB programming and image processing would be advantageous but not essential. Good team-working, observational and communication skills are essential.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/mechanicalengineering

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post contact Dr Paul Hooper paul.hooper@imperial.ac.uk. Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Dr Paul Hooper.  Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: 30th September 2021

PhD Studentship in Industrial Implementation of New Techniques for Inspection of Rough Defects (Prof Mike Lowe, Prof Richard Craster)

This studentship is run from the FIND-CDT based at the University of Bristol. 

More information can be found on the FIND-CDT website.

PhD Studentship in Materials (Dr Ambrose Taylor)

Supervisor: Ambrose Taylor

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of developing, modelling and testing novel paints for coil coating of metal substrates, leading to the award of a PhD degree. The post is supported by a bursary and fees (at the UK student rate) provided by Becker Industrial Coatings.

The research will investigate how the structure of the paints used for the coil coating of metal affects their formability. These paints are high-performance polymers which are applied to steel strip and cured. The pre-painted metal is shipped to the customer to be cut and formed into products such as refrigerators, construction equipment and building panels. The work will combine experimental work and molecular modelling. The experiments will involve mechanical testing (tension, bending, fracture), thermal analysis and microscopy. The polymer structure will be modelled, and the effect of changing the structure will be predicted. The experimental and modelling work will be compared and combined. The structure/property relationships of the paints will be identified, leading to improved and novel materials.

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. You will have a 1st class honours degree in mechanical engineering, materials science, chemical engineering, chemistry or a related subject, and an enquiring and rigorous approach to research together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. Experimental training will be given in materials manufacturing, characterisation and mechanical testing, and investigative techniques including electron microscopy. Training in the modelling aspects will also be provided. Good team-working, observational and communication skills are essential.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/mechanicalengineering

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post contact Prof Ambrose Taylor a.c.taylor@imperial.ac.uk +44 (0)20 7594 7149. Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Prof Taylor. Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: until post filled

PhD Studentship in Metal Forming and Materials Modelling (Dr Xiaoyu Xi)

Supervisor: Dr Xiaoyu Xi

Deadline for applying: until post filled

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of Metal Forming and Materials Modelling, leading to the award of a PhD degree. The post is supported by a bursary and fees (at the UK/EU student rate) provided by the sponsors in the aviation, aerospace and railway industries.

A number of PhD positions are available for UK and EU nationals. The research involves development of advanced metal forming and modelling techniques, and will be carried out at the Metal Forming and Materials Modelling Group. The research activities of the group cover a wide range of areas from theoretical and computational solid mechanics to experimental materials research. These research works involve a wide range of industries, including aerospace, aeronautical, automotive and locomotive.

There are two main research themes within the group: Metal Forming Technologies and Materials Modelling. The Metal Forming research focuses on the development of advanced forming processes e.g. manufacturing lightweight structural materials into high-strength and complex shaped engineering components and cloud based FEA (Contact Dr. L. Wang at liliang.wang@imperial.ac.uk to make enquires). The Materials Modelling tackles the fundamental challenges in materials behaviour at microscopic scale e.g. the distribution and evolution of microstructure and defects as functions of loading, temperature and loading rate, and link them with the macroscopic mechanical responses e.g. formability and damage tolerance (Contact Dr. J. Jiang at jun.jiang@imperial.ac.uk to make enquires).

Over the past decade, the group has successfully developed several world-leading forming technologies and novel materials modelling methods. These techniques have been directly implemented in automotive and aerospace industries. Three research centres and one joint lab have been established. The group is currently led by several world-leading experts in material forming, including Prof. Jianguo Lin, FREng, Dr. Liliang Wang, Dr. Daniel Balint and Dr. Jun Jiang, and has secured over £15 M funding from industries, UK and EU research councils. Over 60 research staff and students are supported through them. To view a current list of projects please visit our website http://www.imperial.ac.uk/metal-forming/.

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. You will have a 1st class honours degree (or equivalent) and/or a distinction MSc degree (if applicable) in engineering or a related subject, and have an enquiring and rigorous approach to research together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. Good team-working, observational and communication skills are essential.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to: http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/mechanicalengineering

For information on how to apply, go to: http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post contact Dr Xiaoyu Xi at x.xi@imperial.ac.uk, +44 (0)20 7594 9546. Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Dr Xiaoyu Xi. Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: until post filled

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Committed to equality and valuing diversity. We are also an Athena SWAN Silver Award winner, a Stonewall Diversity Champion, a Two Ticks Employer, and are working in partnership with GIRES to promote respect for trans people

PhD Studentship in Micromechanical Modelling of Energetic Crystals for Estimating the Thermomechanical Response... (Prof. Maria Charalambides)

Supervisor: Prof Maria Charalambides

Deadline for applying: until post filled

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of Mechanics of Materials leading to the award of a PhD degree. The post is supported by a bursary and fees (at the UK student rate) provided by the EPSRC CASE award in collaboration with AWE, Aldermaston, Reading RG7 4PR. As a result of the industrial funding, this studentship will attract a higher bursary (approximately £20,000 pa) than the usual EPSRC student rate. Due to the nature of the work undertaken by AWE, candidates should normally be a British Citizen and will be required to undergo security clearance.

This four-year project will start on 1 October 2022. The aim of the research is to develop a computational model to predict the thermomechanical response of pentaerythritol tetranitrate (PETN) energetic crystal powders under high strain rate loading. The model will enable the prediction of associated hot-spot ignition as a function of relevant parameters such as crystal size and porosity. Such models will be extremely valuable design tools; relying on experiments alone is problematic as high strain rates often contaminate data due to inertia effects. In addition, it is not currently possible to visualize experimentally the deformation and thermal process at the crystal length scale. The latter is important as it determines the highly localized large deformation and accompanying temperature rise/ignition. The project will build on substantial prior research into micromechanical models for predicting the constitutive response of highly particulate composites at Imperial, linking the microstructure to the bulk response of inhomogeneous materials.

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. You will have a 1st class honours degree in mechanical engineering or a related subject, and an enquiring and rigorous approach to research together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. An interest in Mechanics of Materials is essential.  Good team-working, observational and communication skills are essential.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

https://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/research/mechanics-of-materials/composites-adhesives-and-soft-solids/soft-solids/projects/ 

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post contact Prof Maria Charalambides m.charalambides @imperial.ac.uk  +44 (0)20 75947246. Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Prof Charalambides.  Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: until post filled

PhD Studentship in Micromechanical Modelling of Plastic Bonded Explosives Incorporating Binder Ageing (Prof. Maria Charalambides)

Supervisor: Prof Maria Charalambides

Deadline for applying: until post filled

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of Mechanics of Materials leading to the award of a PhD degree. The post is supported by a bursary and fees (at the UK student rate) provided by our research collaborators AWE, Aldermaston, Reading RG7 4PR. As a result of the industrial funding, this studentship will attract a higher bursary (approximately £20,000 pa) than the usual EPSRC student rate. Due to the nature of the work undertaken by AWE, candidates should normally be a British Citizen and will be required to undergo security clearance.

This project will start on 1 October 2022. Polymer bonded explosives are energetic particle filled composite materials with particulate fill fractions approximately 90%. The aim of the research is to extend an image-based 3D micromechanical Finite Element Analysis (FEA) model already developed at Imperial in collaboration with AWE to derive predictions of the mechanical response of these composite materials as a function of varying particle size distribution. This will provide useful information as to the likely effect of material changes on the mechanical behaviour of the composite. The developed scripts for generating the 3D micromechanical model will be extended such that they are easier to use and more robust, such that they become a ready tool for use at AWE for assessing long term safe storage of materials. Furthermore, our current models will be extended such that they include ageing effects of the composite’s binder (the material in which the particles are dispersed) via incorporating experimental data on its chemical degradation. It is envisaged that this will be achieved through defining new state variables in the binder constitutive model so that the material properties can be described as a function of ageing and molecular mass (as well as temperature, strain rate and possibly stress-triaxiality). The project will involve experimental work to provide the input material parameters required in the models.

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. You will have a 1st class honours degree in mechanical engineering or a related subject, and an enquiring and rigorous approach to research together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. An interest in Mechanics of Materials is essential.  Good team-working, observational and communication skills are essential.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

https://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/research/mechanics-of-materials/composites-adhesives-and-soft-solids/soft-solids/projects/ 

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post contact Prof Maria Charalambides. m.charalambides @imperial.ac.uk  +44 (0)20 75947246. Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Prof Charalambides.  Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: until post filled

PhD Studentship in Mitigating Tyre Emissions (Prof Robert Shorten, Dr Marc Masen)

Applications are invited for a fully funded research studentship in the field of Mitigating Tyre Emissions leading to the award of a PhD degree. The post is supported by a bursary and fees (at the UK/EU student rate) provided by the I3-Lab. Candidates should fulfil the eligibility criteria for the award.  Please check your suitability on the UKRI website.  The project starts in October 2022 and runs for four years.

The project:

 

Tyre emissions due to natural process of tyre wear are a major concern for regulators worldwide. While efforts are underway to understand the tyre abrasion process, and to develop active systems to manage this process, the problem of developing models to predict the aggregate picture of a network of vehicles at the scale of a city, has yet to be considered. Our objective in this project is to develop better understanding of the abrasion process and link that to new digital interventions, and accompanying business models, that can be used to promote circularity in the manner tyres and both manufactured and used in our cities.

The I3-Lab:

 

The mission of the I3-Lab is to act as a lighthouse for translational research activities in the area of circular economy. The added value of the I3-Lab is our focus on the co-design of new digital infrastructures, technologies, and analytics, that will enable widespread servitization of goods and services, rather than solely focussing traditional areas such as new types of materials, and specific material flows. Resolving the technology issues to enable servitization at scale gives rise to frontier challenges in several areas of engineering embracing new notions of ownership and behavioural change. The objective of the I3-Lab is to promote these goals by developing these digital tools and to demonstrate their utility in real use-cases that promote circularity.

We are now hiring and welcome applications from candidates with a passion for technology and societal challenges. You are an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. You will have a 1st or upper 2nd class honours degree in an Engineering-related subject, and an enquiring and rigorous approach to research together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. An interest in both Computational Methods and Experimental work is essential, as are good team-working, observational and communication skills.

For further details of the post, contact Professor Robert Shorten (r.shorten@imperial.ac.uk) or Dr Marc Masen (m.masen@imperial.ac.uk). Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Professor Shorten. Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: 30 May 2022

PhD Studentship in modelling lithium-sulfur batteries (Dr Monica Marinescu)

Supervisors: Dr Monica Marinescu

Deadline for applying: until post filled

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of battery science and engineering leading to the award of a PhD degree.  The post is supported by a bursary and fees (at the UK/EU student rate) provided by the EPSRC via a Faraday Institution Studentship. Please check your suitability at the following web site: https://epsrc.ukri.org/skills/students/guidance-on-epsrc-studentships/eligibility/.

 Lithium-sulfur batteries have the potential to provide the step increase in energy density required by many applications. Their development is hindered by the fact that performance improvements at coin cell level often do not translate to similar improvements large cells. This research involves developing insights into the difference between mechanisms limiting the performance of lithium-sulfur batteries at coin and pouch cell level. The end goal is the creation of a bank of knowledge that enables the successful translation of technology, such as in the form of a performance predictor model. The modelling toolset created will also be used to optimise cell design. While focused on modelling, the project will also involve the development of bespoke experimental procedures, and close collaboration with experimental groups in Chemical Engineering at Imperial College and University College London. You would be joining a large group of enthusiastic and passionate researchers at Imperial College, by becoming part of the Electrochemical Science and Engineering Group (https://www.imperial.ac.uk/electrochem-sci-eng).

 You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person, with an enquiring and rigorous approach to research together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. An interest in energy storage technologies is essential. Good team-working, an inquisitive mind and observational and communication skills are essential. You will have a 2:1 or 1st class honours degree in engineering or sciences, and meet the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London.

 To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/electrochem-sci-eng

 For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post contact Dr Monica Marinescu, monica.marinescu@imperial.ac.uk.  Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae and cover letter to Dr Monica Marinescu. Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry. 

The Faraday Institution Cluster PhD researchers receive an enhanced stipend over and above the standard EPSRC offer. The total annual stipend is approximately £20,000 (plus London weighting) plus an additional £7,000 annually to cover training and travel costs. Recipients will have access to multiple networking opportunities, industry visits, mentorship, internships, as well as quality experiences that will further develop knowledge, skills, and aspirations https://faraday.ac.uk/education-skills/phd-researchers/.

In order to apply for a Faraday Institution PhD position, you need to do both of the following:

  1. Complete a Faraday Institution expression of interest form https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/9B8V3NB
  2. Follow the university application process as per advert.

Closing date: until post filled

PhD Studentship in Molecular understanding of near-surface thermal gradients in cooling fluids to improve battery lifetime (Prof Daniele Dini)

Supervisor: Daniele Dini

Deadline for applying: until post filled

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of “Molecular understanding of near-surface thermal gradients in cooling fluids to improve battery lifetime and thermal management”, leading to the award of a PhD degree.  It is a collaborative effort across three Departments at Imperial College (including Prof. Daniele Dini in Mechanical Engineering, Prof. Fernando Bresme in Chemistry, and Dr Billy Wu in the Dyson School of Design Engineering). To be eligible for support, applicants must be “UK Residents” as defined by the EPSRC. The studentship is for 3.5 years starting in October 2022 and will provide full coverage of standard tuition fees and an annual tax-free stipend of approximately £17,609. Funding is through the project InFUSE (Interface with the future: underpinning science to support the energy transition), funded by the EPSRC and Shell. Please check your suitability at the following here.

A trend in electric vehicles is to combine the coolant loop from the motor with that of the lubricant used in the transmission or gearbox. This simplifies the cooling system and reduces the number of fluids required. This saves weight, complexity, and cost. There is a strong need to create new dielectric coolants that have very low viscosity coupled with high thermal performance using improved chemistries to meet the new needs of the industry. These solutions must also evolve and consider the new discoveries made in the new energy materials space.

Understanding from a molecular viewpoint how the molecular composition of e-fluids, their additives/aggregates and affinity to surfaces, as well as adsorbed films, affect heat transfer and cooling for electric and hybrid powertrains and, consequently, battery thermal management, is key to be able to provide new disruptive solutions in this area. So far, no method is available to study the intrinsic link between surface/cooling fluids chemistry at the molecular level, topography heterogeneities and phase changes linked to heat exchanged across the interface. In some configurations, flow/shear gradients and two-phase nucleation physics, play a very important role and needs to be captured in small scale models.

This project aims to develop a rigorous methodology that considers the fundamental multiscale nature of the problem and uses molecular dynamics (MD) simulations at the atomic scale to determine the heat transport properties of the interface (also when couple to forced fluid flow in single- and two-phase cooling scenarios), which in turn will lead to a much-improved capability to predict the performance of e-fluids in different immersive cooling configurations/temperatures for the next generation of batteries. The results of the MD simulations will provide the necessary description in terms of boundary conditions and will guide the development of accurate coupled continuum models describing heat transfer in individual and multiple cells. The project can be extended to understanding the role that the best candidate cooling fluids can play in terms of their performance as a lubricant. Many other applications across InFUSE can benefit from the development of the proposed modelling framework.

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. Applicants should hold or expect to obtain a First-Class Honours or a high 2:1 degree at Master’s level (or equivalent) in Mechanical Engineering, another branch of engineering, Materials, Physics, Chemistry or a related science. We expect you to have an enquiring and rigorous approach to research together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. An interest in molecular modelling and battery technology is essential.  Good team-working, observational and communication skills are essential.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

InFUSE: https://www.imperial.ac.uk/shell-diamond-prosperity-partnership/

https://gow.epsrc.ukri.org/NGBOViewGrant.aspx?GrantRef=EP/V038044/1

https://www.imperial.ac.uk/tribology/shell-utc/

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post contact Prof. Daniele Dini d.dini@imperial.ac.uk +44 (0)20 75947242.  Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Prof. Dini.  Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: until post filled

PhD Studentship in Shell University Technology Centre (Dr Janet Wong)

Supervisor: Janet Wong

Deadline for applying: until post filled

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of Fuels and Lubricants, leading to the award of a PhD degree. The post is supported by a bursary and fees (at the UK/EU student rate only) and sponsored by Shell. The studentship is for three and a half years from June 2020.

Lubricants are used in engines to reduce friction, to improve machine efficiency and thus reduce greenhouse gas emissions.  Fuel, however may mix with the lubricant during operation, affecting the effectiveness of the lubricant. The proposed research programme is a fundamental study of the influence of fuel on properties of lubricant, with in-situ measurements to be carried out in a modified engine, using various spectroscopic techniques. 

The project is sponsored by the Shell University Technology Centre (UTC) for Lubricants and Fuels based in the Mechanical Engineering Department, Imperial College London, and will take place in the Tribology Group and the Thermofluids Division in this Department.  Both the Tribology Group and the Thermofluids Division are world leaders in their respective fields of tribology, fluid flow, heat and mass transfer, and combustion. Together, they comprise of more than 90 PhD students as well as many post-doctoral researchers and academic staff. It offers a vibrant and multicultural working environment. Laboratories were recently refurbished and are well equipped with an extensive range of instrumentation and extensive computer facilities.

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. You will be an experimentalist and will have a background in Chemical or Mechanical Engineering, Chemistry, Physics or a related field. You will have an enquiring and rigorous approach to research, together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. An interest in engines and basic understanding of their operation with good practical skills is desirable. Training will be given in tribology, thermofluids and the relevant investigative techniques. You will become a skilled communicator, comfortable in an international situation. Good team-working, observational and communication skills are essential.  The project will involve close collaboration with Shell and you will be expected to visit and communicate with various Shell centres around the world.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/mechanicalengineering

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post please contact Dr Sarah Matthews (sarah.matthews@shell.com) or Dr Janet Wong (j.wong@imperial.ac.uk). Interested applicants should email an up-to-date curriculum vitae. Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form available on the Imperial College London website in order for their qualifications to be assessed by the College Registry.

Closing date: until post filled

PhD Studentship in solid-liquid interfaces (Dr Janet Wong)

Supervisor: Janet Wong

Deadline for applying: until post filled

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of solid-liquid interfaces leading to the award of a PhD degree.  To be eligible for support, applicants must be “UK Residents” as defined by the EPSRC.  The studentship is for 3.5 years starting as soon as possible and will provide full coverage of UK students standard tuition fees and an annual tax-free stipend of approximately £17,609. Please check your suitability at the following web site:

http://www.epsrc.ac.uk/skills/students/help/Pages/eligibility.aspx

This project is part of a multidisciplinary project InFUSE whose goal is to study key material and fluid interfaces across a range of application areas with direct impact on the energy transition. Our aim is to create a step-change in the correlative characterisation of interfaces embedded in these systems under realistic environments.

Temperature (and the extraction of heat) plays a very important role in the performance of machines. For example, increased temperature may reduce the viscosity of lubricants, which impacts on friction or wear of machines. It may also lead to increased rate of undesirable reactions, such as corrosion and surface degradation. Overheating also reduces components lives. In the context of EV, increased temperature reduces battery efficiency and poses safety risk. All these applications point to the importance of characterising interfacial thermal conductance at a solid-liquid interface, which is extremely challenging.

In this experimental project, the PhD researcher will characterise the thermoconductance of solid-liquid interfaces in engineering fluids, including lubricants, coolants, and refrigerants. Specifically, the effects of additives, coatings and surface modifications will be investigated. To do so, the researcher will design a setup based on thermoreflectance measurements. Complementary techniques such as QCM, AFM, IR will also be employed. The potential of using thermoreflectance for acquiring film formation kinetics will also be explored.

This project will be based at Imperial College with significant interaction with the project partners, Thin Film Technology Laboratory, Diamond Light Source and Shell. The PhD researcher also will be a part of the Tribology Group. It offers a vibrant, multidisciplinary and multicultural working environment. Laboratories were recently refurbished and are well equipped with an extensive range of instrumentation and extensive computer facilities.

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. You will hold, or be expected to achieve, a Master’s degree or a 4 year undergraduate degree at 2:1 level (or above) in a relevant subject, e.g. Chemical or Mechanical Engineering, Materials, Chemistry, Physics or a related field. You will have an enquiring, rigorous and hands-on approach to research, together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. An interest in experimental work and development is essential, as are good team-working, observational and communication skills.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/mechanicalengineering

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post contact Dr Janet Wong (j.wong@imperial.ac.uk). Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae.  Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: until post filled

PhD Studentship in the feasibility study of superplastic forming and diffusion bonding of nickel-based superalloys (Dr Jun Jiang)

Supervisor: Dr Jun Jiang

Deadline for applying: 30 November 2019

EPSRC Future Nuclear Energy Doctor Training Centre and UK Atomic Energy Authority co-found a PhD scholarship in the Novel Metal Forming Group - (Tuition fees paid, Living expenses of £16,500 per year for 4 years)

We will provide a full studentship to Home/EU students to support their research activities leading to the award of a PhD degree. The potential student should expect to obtain 1st or minimum 2:1 in his/her 1st degree from Mechanical/Materials Engineering/Physics Department.

The research work will be focused on the feasibility study of superplastic forming and diffusion bonding of nickel-based superalloys, stainless steel for key future fusion reactor parts. The Department was the top-ranked Mechanical Engineering Department in the 2014 UK REF exercise. The Novel Metal Forming group is recognised as being at cutting-edge research in hot and warm forming technologies for lightweight components and structures, which covers a wide range of activities e.g. theory, innovative testing, materials and process modelling. The Group has made a significant contribution to the development of new forming technologies and novel materials modelling methods.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to http://www.imperial.ac.uk/metal-forming/

For information on how to apply, go to http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post contact Dr Jun Jiang, at jun.jiang@imperial.ac.uk.

Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Dr Jiang. Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: 30 November 2019

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PhD Studentship in the influence of inelastic damage on the crack growth behaviour of 316H stainless steels (Dr Catrin Davies)

Supervisor: Dr Catrin Davies

Deadline for applying: until post filled

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of fracture mechanics leading to the award of a PhD degree.  The post is supported by a bursary and fees (at the UK/EU student rate) provided by the EPSRC and a stipend enhancement from EDF Energy. EPSRC candidates should fulfil the eligibility criteria for the award.  Please check your suitability at the following web site: http://www.epsrc.ac.uk/skills/students/help/Pages/eligibility.aspx

Industrial engineering components operating at high temperature can exhibit time dependent creep strain and damage. Suitable levels of fracture resistance must be demonstrated in these components (such as UK nuclear plant components) over the entirety of their lifetime to ensure structural safety. The stress-strain and failure properties of such components can change with time as a result of creep strain accumulation and thermal ageing effects. In addition, physical creep damage can develop in the form of cavitation and micro-cracking. The impact of such creep strain and damage on a component’s resistance to crack growth by creep, fatigue and ductile mechanisms needs to be understood. Accelerated creep testing in the laboratory requires tests to be performed at relatively high loads which can also generate significant plastic strains in test samples, the effects of which also needs to be understood to enable the transfer of test results to plant components.

The aims of this project are to determine the effects of prior inelastic (creep and plastic) strain and damage on the crack growth behaviour by creep, fatigue and ductile crack growth mechanisms in Type 316H steels.  The PhD will involve the development of novel experimental test techniques and numerical modelling to describe and predict the influence of inelastic strain and damage on the fracture behaviour of Type 316H steel and to propose methods for including the effects of inelastic damage into Industrial defect assessment procedures.

This PhD is part of the EDF Energy High Temperature Centre at Imperial College London and will receive supervision from EDF Energy in addition to academic supervision from Dr Catrin Mair Davies.

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. You will have a 1st class or 2:1 honours degree in mechanical engineering or a related subject, and an enquiring and rigorous approach to research together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. An interest in fracture mechanics is essential.  Good team-working, observational and communication skills are essential.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/mechanicalengineering

 For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Dr Catrin Mair Davies catrin.davies@imperial.ac.uk.  Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: until post filled 

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Committed to equality and valuing diversity. We are also an Athena SWAN Silver Award winner, a Stonewall Diversity Champion, a Two Ticks Employer, and are working in partnership with GIRES to promote respect for trans people

PhD Studentship in the Rolls-Royce Vibration UTC at Imperial College (Dr Christoph Schwingshackl)

Supervisor: Dr Christoph Schwingshackl

Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

Deadline for applying: until post filled

Applicants are invited for a research studentship in the field of machine dynamics, leading to the award of a PhD degree.  The post is supported by a full bursary and fees (enhanced above the UK student rate). The successful candidate will work with Dr Christoph Schwingshackl and collaborate with engineers from Rolls-Royce plc. The studentship is for three and a half years.

Ensuring the integrity of aeroengines is of highest importance to provide reliable and safe flight operation. In-service engine shutdowns can often be related to vibrational problems and consequently a large amount of research is being conducted in this field to ensure safe operation. The  Rolls-Royce Vibration University Technology Centre in the Dynamics group, has been a leader in this field for many years.

The complicated dynamic behaviour of turbomachinery blades, undergoing high speed rotation in an extreme operating environment, can lead to catastrophic failures. Their dynamic behaviour must be well understood, predictable and measurable, but presents a significant challenge due to the richness of the vibration response of multiple, non-linear harmonics in order to prevent failures. Blade Tip Timing (BTT) is one of the critical technologies used to measure blade vibration in turbomachinery. Due its non-intrusive nature, it allows measurement of every blade as they pass an array of sensors, but in practice significant challenges remain with reliable data interpretation from a running engine due to the complex nature of the observed vibration problems.

The aim of this project is to develop data processing techniques that will help to overcome some of the current challenges in BTT data analysis. The research carried out will be in close collaboration with the Experimental Methods group at Rolls-Royce Plc., with the industrial applicability of the developed technology being critical.

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. You will have a 1st class honours degree in Physics, Mechanical Engineering, Computing, Mathematics, or related subjects, and an enquiring and rigorous approach to research together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. Good team-working, observational, written and oral communication skills are essential. You will be required to communicate with the industrial partners, will have the opportunity to attend multiple international conferences during your PhD and publish your work in scientific journals.

The post is supported by a tax-free bursary (over £21,000 pa) and fees (at the UK student rate) provided by the Rolls-Royce Vibration UTC at Imperial College London.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to: 

https://www.imperial.ac.uk/dynamics/

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post contact Dr. Christoph Schwingshackl (c.schwingshackl@imperial.ac.uk). Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Dr. Schwingshackl. Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry. 

Closing date: until post filled

PhD Studentship in Thermofluids (Prof Aleiferis)

Supervisors:  Professor Pavlos Aleiferis

Deadline for applying: until post filled

High Efficiency Concepts for Zero-Carbon Hydrogen/Ammonia Engines 

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of Thermofluids leading to the award of the PhD degree. The focus will be on developing and understanding new operation concepts for high-efficiency green engines running on zero-carbon fuels like hydrogen and ammonia, using advanced experimental techniques. The post is supported by full bursary and tuition fees at the UK research student rate for ‘Home or Ireland’ students:

https://www.imperial.ac.uk/students/fees-and-funding/tuition-fees/postgraduate-tuition-fees/2021-22/postgraduate-research-programmes/faculty-of-engineering/

Please do not make enquiries or apply formally unless you meet the tuition fees criteria.

Project Description
This project will investigate the fundamentals of fluid dynamics, mixture formation and ignition in internal combustion engines running on hydrogen and ammonia fuels using advanced optical diagnostic experimental techniques. Key areas of study will include direct fuel injection and air mixing in a fully optical engine with flexible valvetrain and boosting systems, to investigate advanced ignition and combustion modes aiming for a zero-carbon zero-emission engine. The research methods will give a full picture of in-cylinder effects related to various engine operating regimes.

The Thermofluids Division at Imperial has an internationally leading record in fundamental and applied research into multiphase and reacting flows, established over several decades. You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the Academic requirements for enrolment on the PhD degree at Imperial. You are expected to have a 1st or upper 2nd class honours degree in Mechanical Engineering or a related subject, and an enquiring and rigorous approach to research, together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. A keen interest in experimentation and future high-efficiency zero-carbon engine systems is important. Excellent observational, practical and communication skills are all essential for this post.

To find out more about the Mechanical Engineering Department at Imperial College London, go to:

https://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering

For further details of the post and informal enquiries you may contact Prof. Pavlos Aleiferis:

https://www.imperial.ac.uk/people/p.aleiferis

Suitable candidates will be asked to complete an electronic PhD application form:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

The starting date will be fixed in discussion with the successful candidate, preferably by the first quarter of 2022.

Closing date: until post filled

PhD Studentship in Tribology (Dr Amir Kadiric)

Supervisor: Amir Kadiric

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of Tribology, leading to the award of a PhD degree. The post is supported by a tax-free bursary (£22400 pa) and fees (at the UK student rate) provided by the SKF University Technology Centre at Imperial College London. 

Reliable operation of lubricated mechanical systems and components is affected by contamination and degradation of the lubricating oil. To maintain the machine performance the oil is therefore regularly replaced. The cost of replacement and disposal of the used oil is substantial. The alternative is to employ a novel process to regenerate the used oil to recover its performance so that it can be used for prolonged periods. This project will investigate which specific aspects of oil degradation and contamination are responsible for the deterioration in oil tribological performance. This research will then be used to inform further development of a novel oil regeneration process to be applied to industrial oils. The project will be conducted in close collaboration with our industrial partner, SKF, and will be based in the SKF University Technology centre for Tribology at Imperial College London.

The project will be largely experimental in nature and will involve the use of tribology test equipment available in the Tribology Group at Imperial, including Mini Traction Machines (MTM) and triple-disc contact fatigue machines (MPR). Additionally, analytical techniques such as NMR will be used to further assess oils as needed.

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. You will have a 1st class honours degree in Chemical or Mechanical Engineering or a related subject, and an enquiring and rigorous approach to research together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. Good team-working, observational, written and oral communication skills are essential. You will be required to communicate with the industrial partners, will have the opportunity to attend multiple international conferences during your PhD and publish your work in scientific journals.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

https://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/research/

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post contact Mr Benjamin Wainwright benjamin.wainwright13@imperial.ac.uk. Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Mr Wainwright. Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: until post filled

PhD Studentship in Tribology (Industrially funded project) (Dr Tom Reddyhoff)

Supervisor: Tom Reddyhoff

Deadline for applying: until post filled

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of Tribology, leading to the award of a PhD degree.  The studentship is for three and a half years starting spring 2020.  The post is supported by a major vehicle manufacturer. 

The project will investigate the mechanisms by which soot causes problematic wear in heavy-duty diesel engine components.  This is important since understanding soot mediated wear can allow an increase in the amount of soot in engine oil. This will enable vehicles to achieve an optimum CO2 - NOx trade-off, and hence lower emissions.  Current industry standard lubricant tests for used oil fail to predict soot related wear problems in real engines and therefore new analytical techniques are required.  To address this, the PhD project will develop a range of lab-based tests to characterise oil properties and compare with friction and wear measurements. Results of which will form part of an industrial programme utilizing real field data. This will involve working closely with, and travel to, a number of industrial sponsors and academic collaborators.

The PhD will be based in the Tribology Group at Imperial College London.  This is one of the largest Tribology research groups in the world, with extensive experimental and numerical research facilities and an international reputation for research excellence.  The Group includes several PhD students, post-doctoral researchers and academic staff, who perform both fundamental and applied research, and offers a vibrant and multicultural working environment.

The successful candidate will be enthusiastic and self-motivated and will meet the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London.  They will have a background in Mechanical, Aeronautical or Chemical Engineering, Material Science, Physics, Chemistry or a related field together with a strong intellect and an enquiring approach to research.  Excellent team-working, analytical and communication skills are also essential.  Training will be given in tribology and investigative techniques including optical interferometry, advanced material characterisation, and surface topography measurements. The studentship will provide the opportunity to become a skilled communicator, comfortable in an international environment at a world-leading institution.  

The post is supported by a full bursary and fees (at the UK/EU student rate) provided by the industrial sponsor. The position is open to UK and EU (ordinarily resident in the UK throughout the three years period preceding the start of the studentship) students who fulfil the eligibility criteria for the award.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/mechanicalengineering

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/mechanicalengineering/research/phdopportunities/.

For further details of the post contact Dr Tom Reddyhoff at t.reddyhoff@imperial.ac.uk or +44 (0)20 7594 3840.  Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Dr Tom Reddyhoff on the above e-mail address citing “Tribology PhD Studentship” in the email title. Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: until post filled

PhD Studentship in Tribology (Dr Tom Reddyhoff)

Supervisors: Dr Tom Reddyhoff

Deadline for applying: until post filled

Applications are invited for a research studentship in the field of Tribology, leading to the award of a PhD degree.  The studentship is for three and a half years starting summer/autumn 2020.  The post is supported by both the EPSRC and Shell Lubricants. 

The PhD project will develop acoustic emission (AE) sensing techniques to monitor and improve the performance of lubricated, machine contacts.  AE sensors detect stress waves that are generated by microscopic events at the interface between sliding components and propagate through material.  Since these deformations result from surface contact interactions and damage, the waves provide a means of listening in on the frictional mechanisms that are occurring.  This provides an important, and currently underutilised, means of assessing both the condition of the lubricating fluid and the energy efficiency of the machine. 

The project will use friction/acoustic experiments (lab-based tests simulating sliding machine interfaces), signal processing (including frequency based techniques and machine learning) and modelling to understanding the underlying mechanisms associated with frictional sound generation. The understanding gained will then be applied to monitor lubricated engine components, first in lab-based simulation tests and then on motored and fully fired engines.  This will involve working closely with, and travel to, a number of industrial sponsors and academic collaborators.

The PhD will be based in the Tribology Group at Imperial College London.  This is one of the largest Tribology research groups in the world, with extensive experimental and numerical research facilities and an international reputation for research excellence.  The Group includes several PhD students, post-doctoral researchers and academic staff, who perform both fundamental and applied research, and offers a vibrant and multicultural working environment.

The successful candidate will be enthusiastic and self-motivated and will meet the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London.  They will have a background in Mechanical, Aeronautical or Chemical Engineering, Material Science, Physics, Chemistry or a related field together with a strong intellect and an enquiring approach to research.  Experience of vibrations and signal processing would be advantageous. Excellent team-working, analytical and communication skills are also essential.  Training will be given in tribology and investigative techniques tribological testing, advanced material characterisation, and surface topography measurements. The studentship will provide the opportunity to become a skilled communicator, comfortable in an international environment at a world-leading institution. 

The post is supported by a full bursary and fees (at the UK/EU student rate) provided by EPSRC and Shell (EPSRC industrial Cooperative Award in Science and Technology – iCASE). The position is open to UK and EU (ordinarily resident in the UK throughout the three years period preceding the start of the studentship) students who fulfil the eligibility criteria for the award.  Please check your suitability at the following web site:

http://www.epsrc.ac.uk/skills/students/help/Pages/eligibility.aspx

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/mechanicalengineering

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/mechanicalengineering/research/phdopportunities/.

For further details of the post contact Dr Tom Reddyhoff at t.reddyhoff@imperial.ac.uk or +44 (0)20 7594 3840.  Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Dr Tom Reddyhoff on the above e-mail address citing “AE - Tribology PhD Studentship” in the email title. Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: Until post filled

Two iCASE PhD Studentships in Tribology (Prof Daniele Dini)

Supervisor: Daniele Dini

Deadline for applying: until post filled

Applications are invited for two research studentships in the field of “Control of lubricant additive performance via electric fields” and “Understanding and Controlling the Effect of Electric Fields on Lubricant and Additive Performance at the Molecular Level”, leading to the award of a PhD degree. The studentships will be based in the Shell-Imperial University Technology Centre for Fuels and Lubricants, which hosted by the Tribology Group in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, and will be supervised by members of academic staff in the team (including Profs. Daniele Dini and Hugh Spikes). To be eligible for support, applicants must be “UK Residents” as defined by the EPSRC. Please check your suitability at the following here. The studentship is for 3.5 years starting in October 2022 and will provide full coverage of standard tuition fees and an annual tax-free stipend of approximately £21,000. Funding is through two Industrial Cooperative Awards in Science & Technology (iCASEs[1]) funded by the EPSRC and Shell. The students will be hosted at a Shell location for a minimum period of at least 3 months over 4 years and offered industrial mentorship during the project. The student will be part of a larger community of Shell-funded researchers at Imperial who are working on lubricant related projects.

Many previous studies have shown that the application of an electric field across a lubricated rubbing contact can greatly reduce, or in some cases increase, friction and wear. This is very important in the context of electrification of transport, where electric fields are readily available and can also be used to control the system response, with multiple implications in the development of new solutions and technologies. However, research to date has been fragmented and failed to provide a clear understanding of the mechanisms involved. It is now clear that applied fields can promote and inhibit additive adsorption and additive reaction; both of which can directly impact friction and wear. These two complementary research projects aim at shedding light on fundamental aspects of this problem and provide us with a better understanding of how to develop better solution to optimise surface and lubricants/additives response in these scenarios.

Control of lubricant additive performance via electric fields: Modern experimental and in situ analytical techniques, largely developed at Imperial College, provide the possibility to identify the mechanisms by which applied electrical potentials can promote advantageous (or suppress undesirable) additive reaction in contacts. There is also the possibility of smart lubrication, where lubricant additive action in invoked only when required. The main objectives are: (1) To scope the extent to which application of an electrical potential difference across a rolling/sliding contact can influence friction and wear with representative modern lubricant base oils and additives; (2) To determine whether the limitations of water-based lubricants in terms of tribofilm formation, wear and fatigue can be mitigated by applied electrical potentials; (3) To understand the extent to which applied electric potentials can control the adsorption of organic friction modifier (OFM), dispersant, detergent and antiwear (AW) lubricant additives on steel surfaces; (4) To develop OFM blends whose adsorption and thus frictional properties can be controlled by applied electrical potentials in both nonaqueous and aqueous lubricants; (5)To determine the extent and

mechanisms by which AW film formation and consequent wear protection can be controlled by applied electrical potentials.

The student will apply advanced techniques including interferometry, in situ Raman and molecular fluorescence to investigate the impact of applied electrical potential on tribofilm formation and resulting friction and wear response of lubricants in rolling/sliding contacts. The introduction of electric vehicles (EVs) makes this a highly pertinent field of interest. The likelihood of stray currents across lubricated contacts is much more likely to occur in EVs than ICEs, with possible detrimental effects on lubrication, while EVs also provide readily available electricity with which to influence additive reactions.

Understanding and Controlling the Effect of Electric Fields on Lubricant and Additive Performance at the Molecular Level: Studies of the fundamental origins of friction have progressed rapidly in recent years. The field is now moving toward design of active control method for nano and/or meso scale friction, including the use of magnetic and electric fields external to the contact. These methods constitute an area of rapidly growing interest, as they address one of tribology’s present day grand challenges: achieving in-situ control of friction levels without removing and replacing lubricant materials situated within inaccessible confines of a contact. A great deal of progress has been enabled by the vast improvement of modelling techniques at the molecular scale – we have pioneered this with Shell and are now in the position to make a real impact in this area. This project will build on our density functional theory (DFT) and reactive molecular dynamics (MD with both classical and reactive – ReaxFF – potentials) simulation capabilities; the idea is to look specifically at the mechanisms and rates of absorption and film formation of lubricant and additive molecules on iron oxide and coated surfaces and the effect that electric fields play in accelerating/inhibiting the reactions. This links very well with the

recent mechanochemistry studies we have performed and may lead to new theoretical development to establish how electric fields change the energy barriers to be overcome for surface reactions to take place – the synergy between mechanical, chemical, and electric effect can now be studied at fundamental level. The aim will be to build a strategy to optimise molecular structure and fields to actively control the film formation behaviour.

The student will first carry out work to understand the effect that electric fields, which might already be present in lubricated contacts, have on lubricant and additives performances and then to study how externally induced fields could be used to optimise the performance of existing and newly formulated lubricants and additives using active control.

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at Imperial College London. Applicants should hold or expect to obtain a First-Class Honours or a high 2:1 degree at Master’s level (or equivalent) in Mechanical Engineering, another branch of engineering, Materials, Physics, Chemistry or a related science. We expect you to have an enquiring and rigorous approach to research together with a strong intellect and disciplined work habits. An interest in developing experimental and/or modelling methods to investigate the effect of electric fields on engineering interfaces across the scales is essential. Good team-working, observational and communication skills are essential.

To find out more about research at Imperial College London in this area, go to:

https://www.imperial.ac.uk/tribology/shell-utc/

http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/mechanicalengineering

For information on how to apply, go to:

http://www.imperial.ac.uk/mechanical-engineering/study/phd/how-to-apply/

For further details of the post contact Prof. Daniele Dini d.dini@imperial.ac.uk +44 (0)20 75947242.  Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae to Prof. Dini.  Suitable candidates will be required to complete an electronic application form at Imperial College London in order for their qualifications to be addressed by College Registry.

Closing date: until post filled

Ongoing opportunities

Research groups

The following research groups have flexible funding, which may enable them to provide funding for outstanding PhD students at any time. Please visit the group websites for more information and to get in touch with a member of the group:

Centres for Doctoral Training

You may wish to explore the opportunities offered by the following Centres for Doctoral Training: