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PhD Studentship: Repair and strengthening of corroded RC columns using organic corrosion inhibitors and Textile Reinforced Mortar (TRM

Xi'an Jiaotong - Liverpool University - Department of Civil Engineering

Supervisor Names:

Principal supervisor: Dr. Ominda Nanayakkara (XJTLU, Department of Civil Engineering)

Co-supervisor: Dr. Theofanis Krevaikas (XJTLU, Department of Civil Engineering)

Co-supervisor: Dr. Luigi Sarno (University of Liverpool, Department of Civil Engineering and Industrial Design)

Project Description:

The need for upgrading Reinforced Concrete (RC) structures especially for those having high importance to society (electric power plants, hospitals, schools etc.) has increased significantly due to public safety and maintenance cost issues. The use of Textile Reinforced Mortars (TRM) to retrofit, RC elements have emerged as a promising alternative to the use of Fibre Reinforced Polymers (FRP), mainly because of TRM's improved performance at elevated or low temperatures, on wet surfaces, at aggressive environments, but most importantly their sustainability. At the same time organic corrosion inhibitors such as small-molecule-based alcohol amine series are becoming the focus of attention due to their environmental friendly behaviour. This study investigates the repairing and/or strengthening of large scale concrete columns suffering from corrosion problems with the use of different types of corrosion inhibitor incorporated patch repair mortars and TRM. 

For more information about doctoral scholarships and PhD programmes at Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University (XJTLU), please go to and Click Study with Us.

Eligibility Criteria:

Academic qualification: The candidate should have a first class or upper second class honours degree, or a master’s degree (or equivalent qualification), in civil engineering, structural engineering or related disciplines.

Language qualification: Evidence of good spoken and written English is essential. The candidate should have an IELTS score of 6.5 or above, if the first language is not English.

This position is open to all qualified candidates irrespective of nationality. 


The student will be awarded a PhD degree from the University of Liverpool (UK) upon successful completion of the program. 


The PhD studentship is available for three years subject to satisfactory progress by the student. The award covers tuition fees for three years (currently equivalent to RMB 80,000 per annum) and provides a monthly stipend of 5,000 RMB as a contribution to living expenses. It also provides up to RMB 16,500 to allow participation at international conferences during the period of the award. It is a condition of the award that holders of XJTLU PhD scholarships carry out 300-500 hours of teaching or research assistance work per year. The scholarship holder is expected to carry out the major part of his or her research at XJTLU in Suzhou, China. However, he or she is eligible for a research study visit to the University of Liverpool of up to three months, if this is required by the project. 

How to Apply:

Interested applicants are advised to email the following documents for initial review and assessment (please put the project title in the subject line).

  • CV
  • Two reference letters with company/university letterhead
  • Personal statement outlining your interest in the position
  • Proof of English language proficiency (an IELTS score of 6.5 or above)
  • Verified school transcripts in both Chinese and English (for international students, only the English version is required)
  • Verified certificates of education qualifications in both Chinese and English (for international students, only the English version is required)
Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Suzhou - China
Funding for: UK Students, EU Students, International Students
Funding amount: ¥140,000
£15,632.68 converted salary* per annum (Covers tuition fee and stipend).
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 24th May 2019
Closes: 3rd July 2019
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* Salary has been converted at the prevailing rate on the date placed
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