Smart Monitoring and Prediction of Generator and Drive Motor Temperature

University of Birmingham - Civil Engineering; Railway Engineering

Overheating of electrical machines leads to rapid failure. Hence, the main limitation on electrical generators and drive is a temperature limit, which is generally enforced with an electrical fuse (current limit). This project will use control and systems engineering science and math to generate predictive models and, using these models, to develop new approaches to intelligent autonomous control of the machine temperature. The theory extensions and methods developed will be generic and applicable to electric drives in trains and electric vehicles and to power-generation on aircraft and trains. Case studies and lab demonstration will use examples from rail, aerospace and automotive sectors and experimental kit available in the BCRRE/School of Engineering labs.

The PhD will be based in the School of Engineering at Birmingham University and the successful candidate will join the Control Systems team at the Birmingham Centre for Railway Research and Education (BCRRE).  The BCRRE holds a world leading position in the sector. We also lead the UK’s premier rail research activity, UKRRIN (the UK Rail Research and Innovation Network), through which we have strong links to the industry. Our team of internationally recognised academics are leading experts in a range of fields from railway engineering, to mechatronics, control, systems engineering.

Enquiries should be addressed to Professor Roger Dixon (

A good first degree (typically BEng or Masters) in Engineering or equivalent Science subject is required.

We welcome applications from students with their own funding. Also, strong candidates will be considered for a scholarship which would include: Full funding (fees + EPSRC stipend) for home/EU students, fees for O/S students.

Enquiries should be addressed to Professor Roger Dixon (

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Midlands of England