PhD Studentship - Advanced Rotorcraft Systems Modelling and Performance Simulation

Cranfield University

Application Deadline: 30th June 2018

Start Date: October 1st 2018

Eligibility: UK, EU, Rest of the world

Duration of award: 3 years

Supervisors: Prof Vassilios Pachidis, Dr. Devaiah Nalianda


Applications are invited for a PhD studentship in the Centre for Propulsion Engineering, Cranfield University, in the field of rotorcraft modelling and performance simulation. This PhD elaborates on the multidisciplinary assessment of performance and environmental impacts of advanced rotorcraft. The research is in collaboration with DEPART2050 (Design Evaluation and Performance Assessment of Rotorcraft Technology by 2050) Clean Sky 2 project.

Main Body:

Advanced rotorcraft configurations such as tiltrotor aircraft and compound rotorcraft combine vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) and high-speed cruise capability. They are intended to improve payload-range capacity, hence, bridge the gap between conventional helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft. This project will involve the development of a computational framework for the simulation of multi-rotor aircraft performance, aerodynamics and aeroacoustics. Further details of the research include:

  • Assessment of turboshaft engine performance and pollutant emissions at mission-level.
  • Enhancement of framework capabilities by implementing advanced rotor aerodynamic models.
  • Evaluation of rotor aeroacoustics and quantification of ground noise impact.
  • Investigation of novel prop-rotor/powerplant technologies. 

The aim of this project will be to assess the performance, pollutant emissions and noise impact of advanced rotorcraft configurations under the Clean Sky 2 umbrella.

Entry requirements:

Applicants should have a first-class or upper second-class degree in engineering or a related area. An aerospace background would be a distinct advantage as would experience of analytical aerodynamics, aeroacoustics, aero-engine performance and programming. The candidate should be self-motivated, have good communication skills for regular interaction with other stakeholders, with an interest for industrial research.


Sponsored by Clean Sky 2, this studentship will provide a bursary of up to £13,200 - £ 15,600 p.a. (tax free) plus tuition fees for three years.

Cranfield Doctoral Network:

Research students at Cranfield benefit from being part of a dynamic, focused and professional study environment and all become valued members of the Cranfield Doctoral Network. This Network brings together both research students and staff, providing a platform for our researchers to share ideas, identify opportunities for collaboration and create smaller communities of practice.  It aims to encourage an effective and vibrant research culture, founded upon the diversity of activities and knowledge. A tailored programme of seminars and events alongside our Doctoral Researchers Core Development programme (transferable skills training), provide those studying a research degree with a wealth of social and networking opportunities.

How to apply:

For further information please contact: Dr. Devaiah Nalianda

E:, T: 44 (0)1234 754742

If you are eligible to apply for this research studentship, please complete the online application form

School of Aerospace, Transport and Manufacturing

T: 44 (0)1234 758540


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