PhD Studentship: X-Ray Video Imaging and Machine Learning to Understand Alloy Solidification

University of Oxford

Prof Patrick Grant / Dr Enzo Liotti

We have developed X-ray imaging equipment and experimental approaches to record real-time videos of the solidification of alloys with high temporal and spatial resolution. This technique is providing new information to help understand and resolve long-standing and important issues in solidification science, including the role of grain refiners, impurities, external fields and many other important practical parameters. The particular novelties developed in the group include: (i) the ability to apply a highly controlled and reproducible pulsed electromagnetic field during solidification to break-up dendrites and to mimic industrial processes; (ii) the use of new multi-element detector (with STFC) that allows the investigation of more complex composition, realistic alloys; and (iii) a range of image analysis techniques including state-of-the-art pattern recognition machine learning algorithms (with Engineering Science) that allow quantified data to be extracted from videos automatically. This project will exploit and further develop these capabilities to study and quantify the nucleation and growth behaviour of equiaxed grains during commercial casting practices. The work will involve X-ray imaging solidification experiments, microstructural analysis and computer programming for automated analysis of images and videos. The project will also require travel and stays of typically 5 days to X-ray synchrotron sources around the world, particularly the Diamond Light Source (UK), ESRF and Soleil (Grenoble and Paris, France) and the Swiss Light Source (Geneva, Switzerland). This project is in collaboration with the EPSRC Future Manufacturing Hub - Liquid Metal Engineering

Candidates are considered in the January 2018 admissions cycle which has an application deadline of 19 January 2018. 

This 3.5-year EPSRC DTP studentship will provide full fees and maintenance for a student who has home fee status (this includes an EU student who has spent the previous three years (or more) in the UK undertaking undergraduate study). The stipend will be at least £15,553 per year.  Other EU students should read the guidance at http://www.materials.ox.ac.uk/admissions/postgraduate/eu.html for further information about eligibility.

Any questions concerning the project can be addressed to Professor Patrick Grant (patrick.grant@materials.ox.ac.uk). General enquiries on how to apply can be made by e‑mail to graduate.studies@materials.ox.ac.uk. You must complete the standard Oxford University Application for Graduate Studies.  Further information and an electronic copy of the application form can be found at http://www.ox.ac.uk/admissions/postgraduate_courses/apply/index.html.

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Type / Role:

PhD

Location(s):

South East England