Back to search results

PhD Studentship - Using Nanoscale Vibrations to Reduce Icing on Surfaces

The University of Edinburgh

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Edinburgh
Funding for: UK Students, EU Students
Funding amount: Not Specified
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 4th November 2021
Closes: 31st January 2022
 

The undesired formation and accumulation of ice on surfaces (“icing”) is not merely annoying, as everyone who has defrosted their car can attest, but also potentially dangerous. Icing can lead to a loss of life by hindering the operational performance of instrumentation or navigation systems on aircraft, ships, and helicopters; in 2008, the ice accretion on exposed probes resulted in the crash of Air France Flight 447, killing all 228 people on board. Icing can also damage power lines and telecommunications equipment and increase maintenance costs of infrastructure; the disruption caused by The Big Freeze of 2010 cost Britain around £280 m a day.

Whether the goal is avoiding defrosting, disasters or disruption, the icing on the surfaces must be either delayed or removed after formation. Recent research in our group has uncovered a novel vibrating-surface-driven acoustothermal force which can superheat fluid within a few nanometres of the surface (for details of this work, see recent publications [1][2] and relevant press coverage [3][4]). This potentially provides a new capability to delay icing and/or melt formed ice. Harnessing this force to combat real-world icing requires a fundamental understanding of: a) ice-growth and growth on surfaces at real-life engineering applications; b) acoustothermal surface-ice interaction producing heat flux at the ice formed right next to the surface; and c) identifying how this generated heat can be optimised to better achieve the ice reduction/removal goals mentioned above.

This project will focus specifically on investigating the influence of chemical and nano-structural properties on ice-growth on surfaces and use acoustothermal heating to efficiently reduce/remove ice from surfaces. The goals are to:

1) use molecular simulations to study ice-nucleation and growth on engineering surfaces in real operating conditions;

2)  identify how surface acoustic waves (GHz frequency and sub-nm amplitudes) can generate heat fluxes causing melting of ice;

3) investigate melting dynamics due to acoustothermal heating on different engineering surfaces, to better understand the influences of fundamental material properties (e.g. nano-roughness), and nano-coatings (e.g. self-assembled monolayers).

  • An undergraduate degree degree in engineering (or in a relevant area, such as applied maths or physics) is required.
  • A good background in mathematics and physics, and a good knowledge of (or a willingness to learn) C++ computer programming and Linux OS.
  • Some familiarity with molecular dynamics simulations would be desirable.

Please email Rohit Pillai (R.Pillai@ed.ac.uk) directly for more details.

[1] S. Datta et al, Nano Letters, 21, 1267-73 (2021)

[2] R. Pillai et al, Physical Review Letters, 121, 104502 (2018)

[3] www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-edinburgh-east-fife-45471403

[4] scienmag.com/dentists-tool-boost-as-engineers-get-to-root-of-tiny-bubbles

Research and Training:

The successful applicant will also join a large research group (see multiscaleflowx.ac.uk) and a consortium of internationally-leading UK institutions working on particle and multiscale modelling of fluid dynamic problems (see www.micronanoflows.ac.uk), with collaborations with industrial partners. This PhD project will be based in the School of Engineering, University of Edinburgh. The supervisors will provide the successful applicant with exceptional research and training opportunities, including:

  • Regular weekly meetings to discuss the research and software progress;
  • Collaborating with a large interdisciplinary network of researchers;
  • Regular opportunities for travel to international conferences to present new results;
  • Training and experience in state-of-the-art engineering research, including advanced software development in LAMMPS;
  • Close mentoring from other programme investigators and experienced postdoctoral researchers;
  • Exceptional career development opportunities with strong institutional support of early career researchers.
We value your feedback on the quality of our adverts. If you have a comment to make about the overall quality of this advert, or its categorisation then please send us your feedback
Advert information

Type / Role:

Subject Area(s):

Location(s):

PhD tools
 

PhD Alert Created

Job Alert Created

Your PhD alert has been successfully created for this search.

Your job alert has been successfully created for this search.

Ok Ok

PhD Alert Created

Job Alert Created

Your PhD alert has been successfully created for this search.

Your job alert has been successfully created for this search.

Manage your job alerts Manage your job alerts

Account Verification Missing

In order to create multiple job alerts, you must first verify your email address to complete your account creation

Request verification email Request verification email

jobs.ac.uk Account Required

In order to create multiple alerts, you must create a jobs.ac.uk jobseeker account

Create Account Create Account

Alert Creation Failed

Unfortunately, your account is currently blocked. Please login to unblock your account.

Email Address Blocked

We received a delivery failure message when attempting to send you an email and therefore your email address has been blocked. You will not receive job alerts until your email address is unblocked. To do so, please choose from one of the two options below.

Max Alerts Reached

A maximum of 5 Job Alerts can be created against your account. Please remove an existing alert in order to create this new Job Alert

Manage your job alerts Manage your job alerts

Creation Failed

Unfortunately, your alert was not created at this time. Please try again.

Ok Ok

Create PhD Alert

Create Job Alert

When you create this PhD alert we will email you a selection of PhDs matching your criteria.When you create this job alert we will email you a selection of jobs matching your criteria. Our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy apply to this service. Any personal data you provide in setting up this alert is processed in accordance with our Privacy Notice

Create PhD Alert

Create Job Alert

When you create this PhD alert we will email you a selection of PhDs matching your criteria.When you create this job alert we will email you a selection of jobs matching your criteria. Our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy apply to this service. Any personal data you provide in setting up this alert is processed in accordance with our Privacy Notice

 
 
 
More PhDs from The University of Edinburgh

Show all PhDs for this organisation …

More PhDs like this
Join in and follow us

Browser Upgrade Recommended

jobs.ac.uk has been optimised for the latest browsers.

For the best user experience, we recommend viewing jobs.ac.uk on one of the following:

Google Chrome Firefox Microsoft Edge