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Research Associate/Fellow in Railway Infrastructure Asset Management (fixed term) ENG032719

University of Nottingham - Engineering

Location: Nottingham
Salary: £27,025 to £39,609 per annum, depending on skills and experience (minimum £30,395 with relevant PhD). Salary progression beyond this scale is subject to performance
Hours: Full Time
Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
Placed On: 12th February 2019
Closes: 14th March 2019
Job Ref: ENG032719

Location: University Park

Applications are invited for the above post in the Asset Management Section of the Resilience Engineering Research Group, Faculty of Engineering, University of Nottingham. The Group is based on the University Park campus. 

A programme of research on Railway Infrastructure Asset Management has been established within the Faculty of Engineering, supported by Network Rail, since 2009. 

The UK railway comprises of 20,000 miles of track and over 40,000 bridges. Much of the infrastructure is aging and, in order to satisfy the future demand for passenger and freight transport, will experience increased traffic densities and loads. The maintenance of such systems, to ensure a safe and reliable service restricted by limited financial resources, is a significant challenge and needs to be carefully managed. Computer models are used to support the decision making to establish the most cost effective maintenance strategy. The University of Nottingham is Network Rail’s Strategic University Partner in Asset Management and the Resilience Engineering Research Group specialises in the development of mathematical models to support the asset management process. These models include the prediction of the rate of degradation of different railway assets, the effects on the asset state provided by different maintenance strategies and the optimisation of the maintenance strategy accounting for the limited resources available and the operational requirements of the railway.

Several projects are now underway to predict the effects of maintenance on the railway operation. Some of these are focused on particular asset types such as: track, ballast, sleepers, points, electrification and signalling systems. Others aim to combine previous models developed to consider the maintenance of the individual system elements to formulate a system or route model. This will enable the most effective decision support accounting for issues (such as line possession, service provision and budget) which affect the route rather than the asset. The modelling methodology is based on Petri nets.

We are looking for a bright, enthusiastic and hardworking researcher to join our team. Specific tasks will be to continue developing the Groups asset management modelling techniques for track and related components plus any ad hoc research projects as requested by Network Rail to address specific topical challenges.

Candidates should hold (or about to obtain) a PhD or equivalent in engineering, mathematics, computer science or statistics ideally focused in the field of system safety, risk or reliability modelling, maintenance modelling, asset management or a closely related subject.  Evidence of the ability to publish research papers and to present work at conferences is required. Experience in IT and computer programming are essential for this post. Knowledge of Petri nets, and an interest in railway systems is desirable.

This full-time post is available immediately and will be offered on a fixed-term 18 month contract.

Informal enquiries may be addressed to Prof John Andrews, tel: 0115 84 68448 Or email Please note that applications sent directly to this email address will not be accepted.

Our University has always been a supportive, inclusive, caring and positive community. We warmly welcome those of different cultures, ethnicities and beliefs – indeed this very diversity is vital to our success, it is fundamental to our values and enriches life on campus. We welcome applications from UK, Europe and from across the globe. For more information on the support we offer our international colleagues, visit;

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