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PhD Studentship: High-Fidelity Adjoint-based Aero-Structural Optimisation

University of Southampton

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Southampton
Funding for: UK Students
Funding amount: £18,622 tax-free per annum
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 9th November 2023
Closes: 31st August 2024
 

Supervisory Team: Dr. Andrea Da Ronch 

Project description

Are you excited to develop innovative solutions to revolutionize the design, analysis, and optimization of aircraft? 

Do you want to work in an environment that encourages you to guide your own career through exposure to a diverse set of novel, open-ended problems, and multidisciplinary teams? 

If so, then we are looking for someone like you to join our team as a Ph.D. student at the University of Southampton. We need driven, creative thinkers to help engineer solutions to current outstanding challenges in aircraft multi-disciplinary design optimisation. 

Applications are invited for a Ph.D. studentship on High-Fidelity Adjoint-based Aero-Structural Optimisation of Aircraft Wings. While many different architectures and algorithms can be used to solve a given optimisation problem, the choice of the architecture has a significant influence on both the computational time and the final design. Another relevant issue is that the engineer may be prevented from using alternative discipline solvers, originally not included in the initial optimisation framework. To overcome these practical challenges, the project addresses high-fidelity adjoints-based design optimisation using a novel optimisation architecture based on the Individual Discipline Feasible. The Individual Discipline Feasible is a monolithic approach to the optimisation problem, where the different disciplines are optimised together in a unified framework, but without any direct coupling. This aspect is of particular interest for those cases where an interface between the disciplines is difficult or impossible to implement, such as in an industrial environment, or when it significantly increases the computational cost of each coupled analysis. The project uses three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics for flow predictions (SU2) and complex, finite element models for the structure (Nastran). The expected contribution and novelty of this project is the implementation of a different architecture in the context of aero-structural optimisation, enabling the demonstration on industrially relevant aircraft problems. 

Applications are invited from candidates with (or who are expected to gain) a first-class honours degree or equivalent in Aerospace Engineering. Experience with SU2 and/or Nastran is required. The studentship is for 4 years and will provide full coverage of tuition fees, a generous travel budget, and an annual tax-free stipend of circa £18,622.

Entry Requirements

A very good undergraduate degree (at least a UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent). 

Closing Date: Applications should be received no later than 31 August 2024 for standard admissions, but later applications may be considered depending on the funds remaining in place. 

Funding: For UK students, Tuition Fees and a stipend of £18,622 tax-free per annum for up to 3.5 years. 

How To Apply

Apply online: Search for a Postgraduate Programme of Study (soton.ac.uk). Select programme type (Research), 2024/25, Faculty of Physical Sciences and Engineering, next page select “PhD Engineering & Environment (Full time)”. In Section 2 of the application form you should insert the name of the supervisor Andrea Da Ronch

Applications should include:

Research Proposal

Curriculum Vitae

Two reference letters

Degree Transcripts/Certificates to date 

For further information please contact: feps-pgr-apply@soton.ac.uk

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