|Funding for:||UK Students, EU Students, International Students|
|Funding amount:||tax-free maintenance grant is c. £20198 p.a.|
|Placed On:||6th March 2023|
|Closes:||7th April 2023|
3.5-year D.Phil. studentship
Project: Coherent X-ray Imaging of Nano-scale Defect Evolution in Steels for Fusion Power
Supervisors: Prof. Felix Hofmann (Oxford Engineering Science) and Dr. Peng Li (Diamond Light Source)
Nuclear fusion promises a clean, safe and almost inexhaustible energy source. To make it commercially viable, new materials are needed that can survive extreme temperatures and intense neutron irradiation for many years. Nano-structured ferritic-martensitic (FM) steels are promising candidates, with a high density of interfaces that act as sinks for irradiation defects. However, their lack of thermal stability is a major problem.
This ambitious project will identify the mechanisms that cause microstructural coarsening in nano-structured FM steels. You will develop and use a new coherent X-ray diffraction imaging approach called Bragg ptychography (BP) that allows 3D-resolved nano-scale measurements of lattice strain and crystal defects. Using BP you will probe how specific defects and crystallites in nano-structured FM steel evolve at high temperature. Insight from these measurements will feed directly into efforts at Oxford and UKAEA to produce thermally stable nano-structured FM steels.
This exciting project involves a substantial X-ray technique development at the I13 beamline at Diamond Light Source (DLS). This includes refining the experimental geometry; developing new analysis methods; and using high performance computing resources. Your time will be divided equally between DLS and Oxford. At both there is an excellent offering of seminars, thematic group meetings and training courses, all presenting opportunities for engagement and collaboration. Information about Prof. Hofmann’s research can be found at http://hofmanngroup.org, additional information about Dr. Li’s work at https://scholar.google.com/citations?user=5NP-j3MAAAAJ&hl=en&oi=sra and about the I13 beamline at https://www.diamond.ac.uk/Instruments/Imaging-and-Microscopy/I13.html.
This studentship is part-funded through the Diamond Light Source and is open to both Home and Overseas students.
Course fees are covered at the level set for Home students (c. £8960 p.a.). Overseas students would need to pay the difference between home and international fees themselves. The stipend (tax-free maintenance grant) is c. £20198 p.a. for the first year, and at least this amount for a further two and a half years.
Prospective candidates will be judged according to how well they meet the following criteria:
The following skills are desirable but not essential:
Informal enquiries are encouraged and should be addressed to Prof Felix Hofmann (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Candidates must submit a graduate application form and are expected to meet the graduate admissions criteria. Details are available on the course page of the University website.
Please quote FH_DLS_MT23 in all correspondence and in your graduate application.
Application deadline: noon 7th of April 2023
Start date: October 2023
Type / Role: