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PhD Studentship - Safe and efficient ship-board storage of Hydrogen

Civil, Maritime & Environmental Engineering

Location:  Highfield Campus
Closing Date:  Tuesday 31 August 2021
Reference:  1376521DA

Supervisory Team:    Dominic Hudson, Yikun Wang, Wendell Bailey

Project description

In response to the climate crisis and to tackle global warming through reducing emissions, we must decarbonise the world’s energy. It is highly likely that future energy sources and fuels will need to be transported around the globe. Even if such sources are renewably produced, the distribution of resources and energy consumption are not even and are unlikely to always coincide. Hydrogen is one potential future energy source. Hydrogen has a low volumetric energy density and is thus likely to require large ships for transport, but it is also very light. 

These properties of Hydrogen bring many engineering challenges associated with its safe and efficient storage onboard a ship. This PhD will investigate containment solutions for Hydrogen onboard, including the materials properties and engineering associated with their safety. An initial study into potential solutions will be followed by in-depth investigation of the materials engineering challenges including porosity, embrittlement and consequences of temperature and pressure changes during transit. Appropriate experimentation will be undertaken to establish key properties of candidate materials. It may be that novel experimental methods, potentially at cryogenic temperatures, are required and thus the project will include their design, should this be the case. The effects of the ship environment, including motions and vibrations may also be considered.

You will work closely with our industrial partner, Shell Shipping and Maritime, and therefore this research has the potential to significantly influence the energy transition for global shipping as it moves towards zero-Carbon fuels. There are opportunities to spend time with Shell Shipping and Maritime as part of your PhD studies. The PhD will contribute to the research of the Centre for Maritime Futures at the University. 

If you wish to discuss any details of the project informally, please contact Dominic Hudson, Maritime Engineering Group, Email:, Tel: +44 (0) 2380 59 2306.

Entry Requirements

A very good undergraduate degree (at least a UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent).

Closing date: applications should be received no later than 31 August 2021 for standard admissions, but later applications may be considered depending on the funds remaining in place.

Funding: For UK students, Tuition Fees and a stipend of £18, 000 tax-free per annum for up to 3.5 years. 

How To Apply

Applications should be made online. Select programme type (Research), 2021/22, Faculty of Physical Sciences and Engineering, next page select “PhD  Engineering & Environment (Full time)”. In Section 2 of the application form you should insert the name of the supervisor  Dominic Hudson 

Applications should include

Curriculum Vitae

Two reference letters

Degree Transcripts to date

Apply online:

For further information please contact: 


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