PhD: Real Time Simulation of Permanent Magnet Synchronous Motors (PMSMs) and PMSM Drives

University of Bristol - Electrical and Electronic Engineering

The project:

High torque motors are a disruptive technology currently revolutionising the automotive industry. Their application includes hybrid and electric propulsion to produce cleaner and more efficient vehicles plus other improvements achieved by replacing hydraulic with electric actuation e.g. for power steering and active anti-roll systems. Vehicle manufacturers and their suppliers require computer simulation models that can be used to predict performance early in the design process, plus models that are able to run in real-time to support the system integration and test tasks.

The focus of this research project will be on developing improved ways to model and simulate PMSM motor drives in real time, making use of MATLAB and supporting tools which are widely used by the automotive industry. As industrial sponsors for this EPSRC CASE Studentship, MathWorks Ltd will provide assistance in best use of MATLAB, Simulink and Simscape plus access to high-end real-time microprocessor-based and FPGA-based hardware. This project offers a unique opportunity for the research student to develop skills and knowledge that will provide a springboard for a career in academia, industry or computer-based simulation tools.

You will be joining a multi-disciplinary team of PhD students, post-doctoral researchers an academics in the Electrical Energy Management Group at the University of Bristol ( let by Prof Phil Mellor. This group has extensive expertise in the design, characterisation, build and test of high performance electric machines and power converters for a range of modern, energy efficient applications, for example aerospace electric power systems (SAFRAN POWER SYSTEMS, LEONARDO HELICOPTERS, AIRBUS), automotive electric and hybrid drivetrains (JAGUAR LANDROVER, QINETIQ).

URL for further information:


How to apply:

Please make an online application for this project at Please select <Electrical and Electronic Engineering> on the Programme Choice page and enter details of the studentship when prompted in the Funding and Research Details sections of the form with the name of the supervisor Dr Drury.

Candidate requirements: 

An essential requirement is a good undergraduate degree (1st, 2:1 or equivalent) in electrical/electro-mechanical/mechatronics engineering (or a closely related subject).


Scholarship covers full UK/EU (EU applicants who have been resident in the UK for 3 years prior to September 2017) PhD tuition fees and a tax-free stipend at the current RCUK rate £14,553 (in 2017/18) plus an additional ‘top-up’ by the industrial partner of £4,000 p.a. (subject to contracts)


For informal enquiries please email Dr David Drury,

For general enquiries, please email

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South West England