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Six fully-funded PhD Scholarships

5 July 2019

These positions have now been filled. Please contact FEMM Hub Manager, Laura O'Keefe (l.okeefe@sheffield.ac.uk) to be notified of future opportunities.

In support of the research activities of the recently launched EPRSC funded Future Electrical Machines Manufacturing Hub, the Universities of Newcastle, Sheffield and Strathclyde are offering six funded PhD scholarships to undertake programmes of research allied to the core research programme of the Hub. Although each studentship is based at a host university, collaboration and access to the expertise and facilities of all academic and industry partners is central feature of the Hub.

1. Robotic winding of high precision coils 

This project will address the challenges of manufacturing high performance and high integrity electrical coils for next-generation electrical machines. It will combine mathematical modelling of the coil winding process, the design of novel end-effectors and experimental studies on a state-of-the-art set of high dexterity robot arms.

Host University: The University of Sheffield
Contact: Professor Geraint Jewell (g.jewell@sheffield.ac.uk)

2. Development of a sensorised workbench for electrical machine manufacture

Towards digital twin and intelligent automation - The lack of in-process tracking and traceability, particularly for manual activities in the manufacturing of electrical machines, means that defects are only commonly discovered during end-of-line test. This research will develop a ‘sensorised workbench’ to capture process characteristics in real time by using multiple sensing modalities.

Host University: The University of Sheffield
Contact: Professor Ashutosh Tiwari (a.tiwari@sheffield.ac.uk)

3. Robust modular machine topologies

This project will develop alternative new modular machine topologies which are easy for automatic manufacturing, fault-tolerant, and robust to variation of design parameters and manufacture tolerances of which sensitivities on the performance will be investigated for application in different market sectors from domestic appliances, automation system, automotive, aerospace, to renewable energy.

Host University: The University of Sheffield
Contact: Professor Zi-Qiang Zhu (z.q.zhu@sheffield.ac.uk)

4. Lightweight design and manufacture of electrical machine components

This project will aim to optimise the manufacture of electrical machine components through various light-weighting techniques, and the design of multifunctional components. It will include the assessment of advanced forming and forging techniques and their application to electrical machine component manufacture, material selection and processing for lightweight applications, and optimised methods of manufacture. The project will also include experimental trials to support the theoretical analysis.

Host University: University of Strathclyde
Contact: Dr Jill Miscandlon (jill.miscandlon@strath.ac.uk)

5. Optimisation of coil windings for electrical machines

This project will aim to transform the design of coil windings for lightweight applications. It will address material selection (from standard copper wires, to superconductive materials), material coatings, and non-uniform coil structures to ensure the appropriate material/strength characteristics are located where they are required, and the winding performance is optimised. The project will also include experimental trials to support the theoretical analysis.

Host University: University of Strathclyde
Contact: Dr Jill Miscandlon (jill.miscandlon@strath.ac.uk)

6. Power dense electrical machines using 3D integrated design

This project will develop new three-dimensional machine topologies with the aim of showing an increase in the power densities possible. Using new laminating techniques and composite materials along with integrated cooling and compressed coils this research will show how new manufacturing methods can be used to raise the power density of electrical machines, and gain an understanding of the manufacturing challenges and potential solutions for these complex integrated components. The electrification of aerospace would be a beneficiary of this research.

Host University: Newcastle University
Contact: Dr Glynn Atkinson (glynn.atkinson@ncl.ac.uk)

Other information

Support package: Each studentship covers home tuition fees and stipend of £15,009 per annum.

It is anticipated that these studentships will commence in September 2019, but there may be flexibility in some cases.

For further details on these electrical machines PhD scholarships and the application procedure for a given project please contact the named contact. For more on the activities of the Hub visit our About page.