Experimental and numerical investigation of patchy roughness in rivers

University of Birmingham - School of Civil Engineering

The University of Birmingham and the University of Melbourne are offering this joint PhD co-funded by both institutions providing the opportunity to study alongside world-leading academics in Birmingham and Melbourne.

Recent flooding events in both Australia and the UK have raised the profile and importance of flood risk management in the public and political arenas. Robust flood risk management relies on rigorous river flow modelling. An improved understanding the physical processes which occur within open channel flow is necessary if the modelling of river flow is to be improved. This project will adopt a twin track approach to examine the impact of patchy roughness on river flow and conveyance capacity. 3-D numerical models of flow through a laboratory flume exhibiting patchy roughness (grass, stones) will be developed to elucidate the precise flow mechanisms. These models will be validated using extensive experimental data sets. The modelling techniques will then be applied to full-scale river reaches to develop recommendations for river management under climate change scenarios. The project has the support of two UK-based engineering consultancies.

The entry requirements for the Birmingham/Melbourne Joint PhD are either:

  • An upper second-class four-year honours undergraduate degree in a relevant subject
  • An MSc/MRes in a relevant subject

Applications are made online at the University of Birmingham website. Click on the 'Apply' button below or on the relevant University course finder page and you will be taken to the University of Birmingham Postgraduate application system. Within the application, at the Programmes open for Admission page, please select ‘EPS/University of Melbourne Joint PhD 3.5 years’. Please detail the supervisor and project title under the Research Information section of the application form. Applications should include a statement of research interests. Applicants are encouraged to contact prospective supervisors informally to discuss the project.

Additional Funding Information
A fully-funded studentship, which includes tax-free Doctoral Stipend of £14,296* per annum, is available for Home/EU and Overseas students on this Joint PhD programme between the University of Birmingham and the University of Melbourne for October 2017 start. For engineering students who are to be hosted by the University of Melbourne, the scholarship rate will be $AUD26,388 p.a. and will include provision for a return trip to Birmingham.

*subject to inflationary variation

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Midlands of England