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PhD Studentship: Fatigue Evaluations of Additive Manufactured Materials in Novel Heat Exchanger Designs

School of Engineering

Location:  Highfield Campus
Closing Date:  Friday 04 January 2019
Reference:  ENGSCI-MATS-380

Additive manufacturing offers enormous scope for new product design options.  Heat exchangers are used widely throughout the automotive, marine and aerospace sectors and are traditionally designed as an assembly of fins and tubes. Modern additive manufacturing (AM) processes can enable complex internal cooling passages to be manufactured with relative ease, allowing the development of radically new designs for the next generation of heat exchangers by manipulating internal shapes and topologies. Effectively designing and manufacturing these metamaterial structures requires appropriate materials characterisation and the development and use of constitutive models and fatigue criteria that capture the microstructure and defect distributions within AM parts. Fatigue studies of AM materials and metamaterial structures are still in a relatively immature state due to the wide range of processing variables.

This PhD project will evaluate the fatigue performance of relevant materials under typical loading and thermal cycles produced by the service environment. The effects of additive manufacturing processes on subsequent materials properties within the metamaterial structures will be a particular focus. This will require novel experimental characterisation of relevant structures under complex fatigue conditions, and determination of appropriate constitutive models that reflect microstructural changes. The effect of environment (e.g. salt deposits and moisture) on initiation and growth will also be evaluated to incorporate these effects in materials models used in subsequent lifing predictions. 

Candidates should have a bachelor’s or master’s degree, normally with at least class 2(i) or equivalent, in a relevant subject of engineering, physical science or applied mathematical discipline (e.g. engineering, physics, materials science, or applied mathematics). Practical experience and/or a strong interest in materials science, additive manufacturing, and mechanics is essential.

The successful candidate will have the opportunity to work directly with Vestas in Denmark, gaining industrial experience during placements as part of their studies. Applicants must, at the time of recruitment, be in the first four years (full-time equivalent research experience) of their research careers and not yet have been awarded a doctoral degree. Full-time equivalent research experience is measured from the date when a researcher obtained the degree which would formally entitle him/her to embark on a doctorate.

At the time of recruitment, applicants must not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in the UK for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to the recruitment date. Compulsory national service and/or short stays such as holidays are not taken into account.

If you wish to discuss any details of the project informally, please contact Prof Philippa Reed, Materials Group, Email: pasr1@soton.ac.uk, Tel: +44 (0) 2380 593763 or Dr. Andrew Hamilton, Materials Group, Email:   a.r.hamilton@soton.ac.uk, Tel: +44 (0) 2380 598697

How to Apply

Click here to apply and select the programme - PhD in Engineering and the Environment. Please enter the title of the PhD Studentship in the application form.

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