Applications are invited from candidates who have an interest in the PhD projects listed below.

The list of projects available is not exhaustive, although the projects listed below have preference: they have funding agreed and are available immediately.

Applicants who cannot find a suitable project listed should discuss their preference with the CDT admissions panel; although we will do our best, there is no guarantee we can find an appropriate supervisor or funding. Similarly, candidates are welcome to apply and be put on a mailing list informing them when new projects become available.

Please note also that project supervisors may require more specific qualifications and backgrounds to suit the skills and experience needed by the PhD research project. These should be listed on the project descriptions - if not please enquire with the supervisor directly.

Due to the sensitive nature of the research being carried out, some projects may require you to be a UK national. These should also be listed on the project descriptions - if not please enquire with the supervisor directly.

Specific research topics will be agreed with candidates when an offer is made.

 


Project details

Assessment of the prospects for radiogenic lead as a coolant for Lead-cooled FRs

Title: Assessment of the prospects for radiogenic lead as a coolant for Lead-cooled FRsMultiscale characterisation of creep deformation of materials for fusion reactor
Description: Radiogenic lead has been proposed as a possible coolant for Lead Cooled Fast Reactors. Radiogenic lead has a relatively high proportion of the Pb-208 isotope when compared to normal naturally occurring lead. Pb-208 has complete nuclear shells and hence is unlikely to absorb neutrons in a nuclear reactor environment. This project is to assess whether the identification and preparation of radiogenic lead might be a better prospect. The project will examine the technical potential of radiogenic lead and also assess the economics of obtaining such material at scale in contrast, for example, to nuclear physics-based enrichment of natural lead.
Institution: The Open University
Supervisor(s): Prof Bill Nuttall (OU), Dr Eugene Shwageraus (Cambs) and Prof Ilie Turcu (ICN-Pitesti, Romania - TBC)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC and The Open University

Essential candidate background/skills: Good degree in engineering or physical sciences. Interest in engineering policy, strategy and economics. 
Desirable candidate background/skills: Interest in large scale engineering systems and infrastructures, such as those associated with resource utilisation and supply.

Nationality restrictions:  No.
Suitable for part-time/flexible study: Yes - subject to certain conditions. Please contact the supervisor for more information. 

 

Atomic-scale cryogenic microscopy to understand degradation of vitrified waste

Title:  Atomic-scale cryogenic microscopy to understand degradation of vitrified waste
Description: Here we have a very exciting opportunity for you to be at the forefront of the development of atomic-scale liquid-solid corrosion mechanisms through application of new methodologies including state-of-the-art cryogenic microscopy and microanalysis to bring insights into the native hydrated state at interfaces within physical systems. The primary framework of this project is in the vitrification process that is used to encapsulate and stabilize high-level radioactive waste in a glass form, for long term safe, storage. Understanding the corrosion mechanisms involved in the reactions between glass and atmospheric water vapor conditions is fundamental to long-term assessment of nuclear waste glasses. For this project you will focus on innovative cryogenic sample preparation to target specific regions of interest at altered corrosion layers of glass and perform atomic-scale microscopy using our world-unique infrastructure. This project will push the boundaries of light element identification at pico-meter scale resolution to advance our understanding of corrosion processes.
Institution: Imperial College London
Supervisor(s): Dr Michele Conroy (IC), Prof Mary Ryan (IC) and Prof Baptiste Gault (IC)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC and Imperial College London

Essential candidate background/skills: Candidates must have a First Class or Upper Second-Class honours degree in an appropriate field such as Physics, Chemistry or Materials Science or a related subject.
Desirable candidate background/skills: Data analysis, research laboratory experience, mathematics, coding, computer modelling and simulation.

Nationality restrictions:  No.
Suitable for part-time/flexible study: Yes.

Characterising residual stresses at pipework weld repairs using machine learning

Title: Characterising residual stresses at pipework weld repairs using machine learning
Description: Nuclear power plant systems are constructed by joining pressure vessels and piping components using modern welding processes. Welded structures may also be subjected to weld repair either during fabrication to mitigate manufacturing defects, or during service to maintain the original design life, or to provide life extension. Welding is an innately aggressive fabrication process that introduces high magnitude residual stresses. For safety critical nuclear applications, the state of residual stress in repaired structures must be carefully characterised and accounted for in structural integrity assessments. The PhD project will review the latest developments in data mining and machine learning methods, identify baseline parameters controlling residual stresses at weld repairs, collect high quality training data using data mining methods, develop/optimise a suitable machine learning tool, train the tool using the mined data, validate the outputs against independent measurements, and create residual stress characterisation tool with a user-friendly interface for engineers in industry
Institution: The Open University
Supervisor(s): Dr Foroogh Hosseinzadeh (OU) , Dr Hyo Kyeom Kim (OU), Prof John Bouchard (OU) and Dr Miguel Yescas (Framatome)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC and Framatome

 

Essential candidate background/skills: A strong background in Solid Mechanics, Materials Engineering or Mechanical Engineering and enthusiasm for laboratory experimental work and programming.


Desirable candidate background/skills: Competent in finite element modeling and programming using Matlab or Python with background in machine learning methods.  

Nationality restrictions:  None.
Suitable for part-time/flexible study: No - restrictions on duration of funding. 

 

Degradation of the thermal and mechanical properties SiCf/SiCm composites

Title: Degradation of the thermal and mechanical properties SiCf/SiCm composites
Description: This is a project co-funded by UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA), and it is an exciting opportunity to contribute to the application of SiC-based ceramic matrix composites in nuclear fission and its translation to fusion. For this project the MSE-F group (UKAEA) will supply four different grades of SiCf/SiCm available from international industrial partners. The PhD student on this project will be based at the University of Bristol and is anticipated to spend a significant amount of time at UKAEA to conduct relevant experiments, such as micromechanical testing and Focus Ion Beam tomography characterisation. 
Institution: University of Bristol
Supervisor(s): Dr Dong (Lilly) Liu (UoB) and Dr Slava Kuksenko (UKAEA)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC and UKAEA

Essential candidate background/skills: 

  • A first class or 2:1 honours in Physics, Materials Sciences, Chemistry, Mechanical Engineering or a related subject
  • Excellent written and spoken English communication skills
  • Willingness to work off campus at UKAEA (Culham) for experiments at their facilities (expenses will be covered)


Desirable candidate background/skills: 

  • Ability to work within a team but also an independent thinker who takes responsibility of the project
  • Ability to work with international research teams
  • Enthusiasm for conducting experiments and able to communicate the results with modelling collaborators

Nationality restrictions:  UK nationals only.

Suitable for part-time/flexible study: No. 

Dynamic fracture testing techniques for alloys

Title: Dynamic fracture testing techniques for alloys
Description: The effect of loading rates is known to affect the mechanical properties of alloys, especially the yield strength and fracture toughness. 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. 
Institution: Imperial College London
Supervisor(s): Dr Paul Hooper (IC), Dr Catrin Davies (IC), Dr Mike Cox (AWE) and Dr Giles Aldrich-Smith (AWE)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC and AWE

Experiments to create a predictive model to unravel corrosion damage in steel

Title: Experiments to create a predictive model to unravel corrosion damage in steelCritical experiments to unravel metal corrosion
Description: The student will conduct standardised and novel experiments to gain new insight into corrosion processes in stainless steels. The work will involve mechanical and electrochemical testing, as well as the use of a wide variety of materials characterisation techniques (SEM, EBSD, XCT, etc.). There will be opportunities to use state-of-the-art synchrotron science facilities to explore new corrosion measurement techniques. The student will join an active team working in tackling corrosion problems from theoretical, experimental and computational perspectives. The position will ideally suit a student with hands-on attitude with knowledge of materials science and/or electrochemistry/corrosion processes.
Institution: Imperial College London 
Supervisor(s): Dr Mark Wenman (IC), Dr Emilio Martinez-Paneda (IC) and Dr Giuseppe Scatigno (EdF Energy)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC and EdF Energy

Essential candidate skills/background: First Class Degree in Materials Science, Physics, Engineering, or a related subject. Excellent written and verbal communication.
Desirable candidate skills/background: Evidence of 
conducting hands-on experiments of mechanical and electrochemical nature and materials characterisation. Willingness to work as part of a team and to be open-minded and cooperative both internally and with external project partners.

Nationality restrictions: None
Suitable for part-time/flexible study: No. The project requires time-consuming experiments that cannot be conducted intermittently or outside normal working hours. 

 

Finite element modelling of the corrosion of stainless steels/CuCrZr for STEP

Title:  ‌Finite element modelling of the corrosion of stainless steels/CuCrZr for STEP
Description: The STEP programme roadmap is very tight; with a need to down select materials in the next few years before build can begin in 2032 if the programme is to deliver by 2040.  Selection concerns materials that will carry coolant to remove reactor heat, which might be stainless steels, as used in many fission plants, and also proposed for ITER, using boronated coolant water. To achieve the ambitious goals for fusion, state-of-the art corrosion modelling capabilities will be needed to support experiments.  This project will use phase field approaches embedded in finite element models, being developed at Imperial College, jointly by the Martinez-Paneda and Wenman groups to model corrosion development (including microstructure, electrolyte ion concentrations, pit nucleation and growth and transition to stress corrosion cracks).  
Institution: Imperial College London
Supervisor(s): Dr Mark Wenman (IC) and Dr Emilio Martinez-Paneda (IC)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC and United Kingdom Energy Authority

Essential candidate background/skills: A high 2:1 or 1st in materials science, mechanical engineering, physics, chemistry or natural science.  Other disciplines will be considered.
Desirable candidate background/skills: Structural mechanics, chemistry and computational modelling.  Some coding skills ideally: python, matlab and FORTRAN.  

Nationality restrictions:  No.
Suitable for part-time/flexible study: TBC

Galling-resistant Co-free hardfacings for light water reactors

Title:  Galling-resistant Co-free hardfacings for light water reactors
Description: Galling, or adhesive wear, is a phenomenon that occurs, for example, in the mating surfaces of valves. Galling-resistant materials such as Stellites using a Co-Cr matrix with a high fraction of carbide precipitates that provide hard, non-adhesive areal coverage. Unfortuantely, the wear debris activates in the reactor core, giving rise to an operator exposure challenge, motivating the development of Co-free hardfacings. Understanding the phase metallurgy is the first challenge, requiring X-ray diffraction and synergistic EDX - EBSD-based phase characterisation. Then understanding the galling behaviour and particularly the stress-induced transformations and corrosion scales requires further (S)TEM-based characterisation
Institution: Imperial College London
Supervisor(s): Prof David Dye (IC), Prof Daniele Dini (IC) and Dr David Stewart (R-R)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC and Rolls-Royce Plc

Essential candidate background/skills: High 2.1 or First Degree in Materials, Mechanical, Aerospace or Nuclear Engineering
Desirable candidate background/skills: Experience in industry and with microstructures/electron microscopy/diffraction

Nationality restrictions:  No, but UK candidate preferred in order to make full use of facilities
Suitable for part-time/flexible study: No - due to timescales of research funding and deliverable are for four years. 

 

High performance deterministic radiation transport methods for SMRs

Title: High performance deterministic radiation transport methods for SMRs
Description: The aim of this PhD project is to develop novel numerical algorithms on modern, multi-core and many-core, high performance distributed computing (HPC) architectures for radiation shielding analyses of small modular reactors (SMRs) such as the steam raising nuclear power plants (NPPs) of nuclear submarines or the new Rolls-Royce, civil nuclear, SMR concept. The computational analysis of radiation shielding and dosimetry problems, in general, requires the solution of a complex transport equation that describes the migration of neutral particles through a prescribed host medium such as a radiation shield. The aim of the R&D is to develop computationally efficient, self-adaptive, angular discretisation methods that are computationally efficient on multi-core and many-core high performance computing (HPC) architectures. 
Institution: Imperial College London
Supervisor(s): Dr Matthew Eaton (IC) and Dr Mike Bluck (IC)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC and Rolls-Royce Plc

Essential candidate skills/background: Candidates must have a good mathematical background and a good degree (First Class or Upper Second-Class honours) in an appropriate field such as physics, mathematics, computer science or engineering. It cannot be over-emphasized that the candidate must have very good mathematical skills and the ability to put physical models into a mathematical form.
Desirable candidate skills/background: Applications from candidates with a background in scientific computing or numerical modelling are particularly welcome.

Nationality restrictions: UK nationals only to secure appropriate clearance
Suitable for part-time/flexible study: The project is intended for full-time study. The project requires extensive training in mathematical modelling, numerical methods, and software engineering as well as collaboration with UK industry. This extensive focus on mathematical modelling, numerical methods, and software engineering predicates against delivering the project in a part-time manner. However there is some scope for flexible study (e.g. remote or non-conventional hours) and this can be discussed with the supervisor if you are invited to interview.

In-situ monitoring for Additive Manufacturing

Title: In-situ monitoring for Additive Manufacturing
Description: 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. 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 time. 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 imaging, infrared techniques and 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.
Institution: Imperial College London
Supervisor(s): Dr Paul Hooper (IC), Dr Catrin Davies (IC) and Dr Jack Adams (Rolls-Royce)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC and Rolls-Royce Plc

L-H transition studies on the ST40 tokamak

Title: L-H transition studies on the ST40 tokamak
Description: The plasma transition from the low to high (L-H) confinement regime in tokamaks, one of the most remarkable discoveries in fusion history, refers to the sudden improvement of confinement when input power is increased above a critical value. For ITER, questions on how to enter and exit the H-mode with the available heating power remain a crucial part of the practical machine operation planning.  Recently, new tokamak concepts wandering further away from the conventional design of ITER, JET, etc., have been proposed, which require understanding of the access to H-mode in new regimes.  The topic of L-H transitions is thus rapidly evolving, with a growing number of experimental studies planned on existing machines. This project will make a unique and important contribution to ongoing world-wide H-mode access studies through the analysis of experimental results on the new ST40 super-conducting spherical tokamak at Tokamak Energy Ltd. The emphasis will be on the investigation of the time-evolution of the L-H/H-L transitions, the edge pedestal where available and the development of a novel probability distribution function (PDF) statistical method.
Institution: Imperial College London
Supervisor(s): Dr Robert Kingham (IC) and Dr Yasmin Andrew (IC)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC and Tokamak Energy

Essential candidate background/skills: Good physics undergraduate degree (1st or 2(i) of 65% or over) or MSc
Desirable candidate background/skills: Data analysis, research laboratory experience, mathematics, coding, computer modelling and simulation

Nationality restrictions: None.
Suitable for part-time/flexible study: Yes. 

Long-term performance of PO4-based backfill cements in repository environments

Title:  Long-term performance of PO4-based backfill cements in repository environments
Description: Through natural decay, Depleted Natural and Low Enriched Uranium (DNLEU) will become the most radioactive material in the UK geological disposal facility after 1 million years, which poses a significant and challenging-to-manage long-term risk. However, while various promising phosphate cements  have been identified, their thermodynamic data are incompletely known. This lack in fundamental thermodynamic understanding of P chemistry (which is a prerequisite for understanding U-P chemistry) in cement systems is a key research gap in the UK DNLEU disposal context. This project will develop the data and models needed to reliably predict the long-term performance of phosphate-based cements, which are promising backfill materials for DNLEU immobilisation. We aim to 1) Develop(/complete) thermodynamic data/models for key solid phases in phosphate cements; 2) Predict the properties of hydrothermally aged phosphate cement backfills designed to RWM specifications using thermodynamic modelling; and 3) predict the durability of phosphate cement backfills exposed to groundwater
Institution: Imperial College London
Supervisor(s): Dr Rupert Myers (IC) and Dr Hong Wong (IC)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC and Radioactive Waste Management


Essential candidate background/skills: 

  • A first or good second class undergraduate level degree (or international equivalent) in a STEM subject, (e.g., Chemistry, Metallurgy, Physics, Materials Science, Chemical Engineering, Environmental Science, Geology), or a course with strong emphasis on chemistry.
  • Laboratory experience.
  • Strong interest in sustainability and research.
  • Excellent English communication skills.
  • Proactive, positive, professional, reliable, and ambitious attitude to work.


Desirable candidate background/skills: Nuclear industry experience

Nationality restrictions: None.
Suitable for part-time/flexible study: No - due to research timescales the funding is available for four years only. 

Modelling advanced fuels for HTGR at the atomic scale

Title:  Modelling advanced fuels for HTGR at the atomic scale
Description: High temperature gas-cooled reactors have been selected by the Her Majesty's Government as the technology of choice for the Advanced Modular Reactor demonstrator and building upon a strong UK history of gas-cooled reactor research and operations. Operational reactors to-date have primarily operated with UO2 fuel kernels, but to fully realise the potential of HTGRs requires fuels to achieve high-burns of at least 2-3 times those of the current (global pressurised water) reactor fleet. This may necessitate the use of advanced fuels, with uranium oxycarbide and uranium nitride fuels two front runners. To aid in the understanding of optimal fuels for HTGRs this PhD will use state of the art atomic scale computational methods based on static quantum and molecular dynamics methods.
Institution: Imperial College London
Supervisor(s): Prof Sir Robin Grimes (IC) and Dr Mark Wenman (IC)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC and Industrial Sponsor

Essential candidate background/skills: First degree or MSc in Physics, Chemistry, Materials Science or a relevant science or engineering subject. Willingness to work cooperatively with both internal and with external project partners.
Desirable candidate background/skills: Evidence of having carried out previous modelling work or having taken a course in modelling. Excellent written and verbal communication.

Nationality restrictions:  UK nationals in order for appropriate security clearance to be obtained.
Suitable for part-time/flexible study: No - due to timescales of research funding and deliverables. 

Multiscale characterisation of creep deformation of materials for fusion reactors

Title: Multiscale characterisation of creep deformation of materials for fusion reactor
Description: Due to the extreme conditions seen in a fusion reactor, material performance is a critical factor in the future production of fusion power plants. Using materials in this environment requires unprecedented understanding of material deformation at high temperatures, under high neutron flux and over long periods of time. As performing material testing that incorporates all of these requirements is incredibly difficult, if not impossible, before building a fusion power plant, this instead leads to a requirement to understand the deformation across all length scales to improve the predicative capacity of material performance models that can link material data from numerous different tests. Materials for fusion are low technology readiness level, novel and only available in small volumes. Therefore, there is a need to extract as much information from a given amount of material as possible. The aim of this project is to work towards doing just that for material behaviour in the creep regime, primarily using Grade 91 steel as a model material for EUROFER 97. This work will utilise the inherent scalability of the image processing technique Digital Image Correlation (DIC) to quantify creep deformation at multiple length scales concurrently on the same sample, using a combination of visible light and electron imaging using a scanning electron microscope (SEM).
Institution: The Open University
Supervisor(s): Dr Alexander Forsey (OU), Dr Salih Gugor (OU) and Dr Allan Harte (CCFE)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC, The Open University and Culham Centre for Fusion Energy

Salt-cooled High-temperature Reactors

Title:  Salt-cooled High-temperature Reactors
Description: Molten salt cooled reactors (also known as Fluoride salt-cooled High-temperature Reactors – FHR) offer a number of significant advantages compared to currently operating LWRs. High temperature operation allows achieving high thermodynamic efficiency of power conversion using advanced power cycles, such as supercritical CO2, as well as a possibility of using nuclear heat directly to drive industrial processes, production of synthetic fuels, such as hydrogen or for district heating of areas located particularly far away from the heat source. Furthermore, high heat capacity of molten salts, their low operating pressure (despite high temperature) and high solubility and retention of otherwise volatile fission products would allow the salt-cooled reactors to avoid complicated and costly safety systems which plague the economics of LWRs. Multiple projects are currently under way around the world aiming at the development of salt-cooled reactors. In the UK further research is required in moderator choice, safety case and fuel cycle options.
Institution: University of Cambridge
Supervisor(s): Dr Eugene Shwageraus (Camb.) and Dr Jean-Marie Hamy (Framatome)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC and Framatome

*NOTE - Funding is available for up to two projects from this stream. The candidate will discuss which stream they are interested in should they be invited to a PhD interview. If you have any questions it is highly recommended you contact Dr Eugene Shwageraus in the first instance.

Study of magnetic presheath stability to parallel drifts

Title:  Study of magnetic presheath stability to parallel drifts
Description: The proposed project focusses on kinetic study of sheaths at the interface between plasma in the scrape-off layer (SOL) and wall structures, for oblique angle between the magnetic field and the surface. The sheath is crucial as it sets the boundary condition for the plasma exhaust streaming to the divertor in tokamaks. In order to manage the power flux to the divertor, modern tokamaks operate with the magnetic field impinging on the diverter at a very shallow angle, to spread the power over as large an area as possible and thereby mitigate material damage. This geometry sets up large ExB drifts in the magnetic presheath (MPS). These ExB flows will be sheared and potentially prone to Kelvin-Helmholtz-like instabilities, which could in turn concentrate fluxes on to small areas of the surface. This could be detrimental to the survivability of plasma facing components to exhaust in tokamaks. However, such instabilities are not well understood under the conditions needed for a reactor. The idea is to develop a kinetic code and use it to study sheared flows and resulting instabilities in the MPS  including warm ion effects (needed for Ti>Te found near the divertor) and ion collisions. The code will focus on solving the ion Vlasov-Fokker-Planck equation, together with adiabatic electrons.
Institution: Imperial College London
Supervisor(s): Dr Robert Kingham (IC) and Dr Yasmin Andrew (IC)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC and Tokamak Energy

Essential candidate background/skills: Good physics undergraduate degree (1st or 2(i) of 65% or over) or MSc
Desirable candidate background/skills: Mathematics, coding, computer modelling and simulation

Nationality restrictions: None.
Suitable for part-time/flexible study: No - due to research timescales the funding is available for four years only. 

Thermal transient effects in Fusion Front Wall/Breeder Blanket components

Title: Thermal transient effects in Fusion Front Wall/Breeder Blanket components
Description: The high operating temperatures and nuclear radiation within a fusion reactor can significantly change the microstructure of its components, which in turn can change the material properties and mechanical behaviour. The materials chosen for fusion reactors have been specifically engineered to reduce the amount of induced radiation, but it is also important to understand how such materials will behave when exposed to the high temperatures of the fusion plasma. This project would build on work at Bristol that has shown that even short periods high temperature (~750°C) exposure can cause significant microstructural degradation of the Eurofer-97 stainless steel material used for structural support and cooling pipes. This could affect mechanical properties and corrosion resistance, in turn leading to a shortening of component life. This PhD project will study the effect of very short-term thermal excursions on fusion front wall, divertor and breeder blanket materials and assess their effect on the microstructure and corrosion behaviour of the material.
Institution: University of Bristol
Supervisor(s): Dr Tomas Martin (UoB) and Dr Huw Dawson (UKAEA)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC and United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority

Essential candidate background/skills: 

Candidate should have an good (1st/2.1) undergraduate degree in materials science, physics, chemistry, engineering or an equivalent discipline.

The candidate should have an enthusiasm for nuclear fusion and materials science, and be comfortable with both computational modelling and experimental work


Desirable candidate background/skills: 

It would be beneficial for the student to have an understanding of fusion energy, the microstructure of metals, electron microscopy and/or finite element analysis modelling, but all training will be provided.

Nationality restrictions:  None.

Suitable for part-time/flexible study: Yes.

Uncertainty quantification and surrogate model development of meso-scale damage

Title: Uncertainty quantification and surrogate model development of meso-scale damage
Description: The aim of this PhD project at Bristol is to assess the applicability of surrogate models of micro-structurally informed physical models in probabilistic assessment and engineering design of nuclear plants. The project will make use of the crystal plasticity finite element model of fatigue damage in extreme environment of a nuclear power plant and asses the uncertainty in the result associated with varying its governing parameters. The surrogate model is expected to be suitable for application in engineering practice allowing for the complex meso-scale models to inform design and assessment of components.
Institution: University of Bristol
Supervisor(s): Prof David Knowles (UoB), Prof Mahmoud Mostafavi (UoB) and Mike Martin (R-R)
Sponsor(s): EPSRC and Rolls-Royce Plc

Essential candidate background/skills: 

  • A first class or good 2:1 honours degree in a science, engineering or mathematical subject

Desirable candidate background/skills: 

  • Familiarity with artificial intelligence algorithms

Nationality restrictions:  None.

Suitable for part-time/flexible study: No - the PhD is linked to other research at Imperial College London and the University of Manchester and the projects must proceed in parallel.