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PhD Studentship: Numerical simulation of contacts working under mixed lubricating conditions

Bournemouth University - Faculty of Science and Technology

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Bournemouth
Funding for: UK Students, EU Students, International Students
Funding amount: £15,000 maintenance grant per annum
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 20th May 2019
Closes: 31st July 2019

Lead Supervisor name: Professor Zulfiqar A Khan

The aim of this project is to derive the necessary equations for the modelling of lubricated contacts operating under mixed lubricating conditions.

The majority of the lubricated contacts in machine elements such as gears and bearings operate under mixed lubricating conditions where the lubricating film can’t fully separate the asperities of the two mating surfaces. Although a significant volume of research has been conducted in the modelling of lubricated contacts, there is still NO model that can adequately and efficiently solve the mixed lubrication operating conditions. This is in part because the mathematical formulation of the problem is incomplete and partly the assumptions which are commonly made in Elastohydrodynamic Lubrication (EHL) are not valid within the context of mixed lubrication regime.

This model shouldn’t use assumptions which are already found in the literature (such as average flow factors) but rather be capable of taking into consideration the contact of the individual asperities and the resulting flow around them. Both mathematical and numerical methods should be used for modelling and governing algorithms. Platforms such as MatLab and/or Ansys and/or Abaqus or Comsol should be utilised to validate the efficiency of the models/algorithms.

What does the funded studentship include?

Funded candidates will receive a maintenance grant of £15,000 per annum (unless otherwise specified), to cover their living expenses and have their fees waived for 36 months. In addition, research costs, including field work and conference attendance, will be met.

Funded Studentships are open to both UK/EU and International students unless otherwise specified.

Eligibility criteria

Candidates for funded PhD studentship must demonstrate outstanding qualities and be motivated to complete a PhD in 3 years.

Studentship candidates must demonstrate outstanding academic potential with a 1st class honours degree and/or a Master’s degree with distinction. An IELTS (Academic) score of 6.5 minimum (with a minimum 6 in each component) is essential for candidates for whom English is not their first language.

Applicants will be asked to submit an online application form and a proposal (c. 1500 words) outlining their understanding of the project for which they are applying, the approach they would envisage taking and what qualities they will bring to the research community.

Additional Eligibility

A first degree in relevant engineering discipline is essential. Master degree in relevant engineering or applied mathematics or physics is essential. Candidate is expected to demonstrate knowledge, understanding and experience of mathematical and numerical modelling and the use of at least one of the above software packages for simulation purposes. Strong academic profile in engineering maths or applied mathematics is essential. Basic or fundamental knowledge and understanding of tribology (contact mechanics and/or lubrication) is desirable.

Closing date: The first call for applications will close on 31 July 2019.

For further information on how to apply click the ‘Apply’ button above or email

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