PhD Studentship: Advanced modelling techniques for impact of composite materials (supported by Rolls-Royce plc)

University of Bristol - Department of Aerospace Engineering

The project:

Composite materials have seen increasing use in the aerospace sector, due to their light weight, high stiffness and strength as well as corrosion and fatigue resistance. In service they are subject to impact threats such as bird and hail strike and foreign object damage, and so need to be designed to withstand such loading. Finite element analysis is widely used in the design and structural assessment of candidate designs and in recent years, significant advances have been made in this capability.

However, there still remain challenges, particularly for the complex damage mechanisms that occur under impact loads and so further research is still required to improve predictive capability. This project will develop and validate new modelling techniques, to be implemented in finite element software via custom written user subroutines, in particular focusing on mesh-independent cracking models such as the extended finite element method (XFEM).

It will be a collaborative effort between the Universities of Bristol and Oxford, with the successful candidate being expected to spend time at both institutions.

The PhD

We are looking for an enthusiastic student with at least a 2:1 Honours degree in Engineering, Mathematics, Physics or Materials who has a strong interest in composites, numerical modelling and materials failure mechanisms. The position is open to UK/EU nationals who have been resident in the UK for three years preceding the date of application (which can include full time study for EU applicants). You will receive a fully funded 4-year studentship, which covers both living expenses and tuition fees. In addition, Rolls-Royce will provide an enhanced stipend.

You will work alongside experts in the Advanced Composites Centre for Innovation and Science at Bristol and the Solid Mechanics and Materials Engineering Group in Oxford and receive extensive training in numerical analysis, modelling techniques and composite materials. You will also work closely with the project partner, Rolls-Royce plc, to help you understand the technical challenges and to enable the results of your research to have a real influence in the aerospace sector.

How to apply: Please make an online application for this project at http://www.bris.ac.uk/pg-howtoapply.

Please select<programme title>on the Programme Choice page. You will be prompted to enter details of the studentship in the Funding and Research Details sections of the form.

Candidate requirements: At least a 2:1 Honours degree in Engineering, Mathematics, Physics or Materials who has a strong interest in composites, numerical modelling and materials failure mechanisms.

Funding: UK/EU nationals who have been resident in the UK for three years preceding the date of application (which can include full time study for EU applicants). You will receive a fully funded 4 year studentship, which covers both living expenses and tuition fees. In addition, Rolls-Royce will provide an enhanced stipend.

Contacts: Professor Stephen Hallett (stephen.hallett@bristol.ac.uk)

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Type / Role:

PhD

Location(s):

South West England