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Civil Engineering: Fully Funded EPSRC DTP PhD Scholarship: Nature-based solutions for coastal defence

College of Engineering

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Prof H. K Karunarathna No more applications being accepted Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

About the Project

This scholarship is funded through Swansea University EPSRC DTP.

Start date: January 2021

Subject areas: Coastal engineering

Project description:

Global climate change-driven sea level rise and frequent storms increase the frequency and severity of coastal hazards. Therefore, some form of engineering interventions are required to control coastal erosion and flooding. Nature-based coastal engineering solutions are being increasingly preferred over grey infrastructure to keep coastlines safe. Many coastal systems are presented with large and complex vegetated ecosystems such as salt marshes, mangroves, seagrass beds and dune grass. Although these vegetated ecosystems are known to act as natural barriers against coastal erosion and flooding the underlying physical interactions between hydro-sediment dynamics and vegetation are not well known. This project will investigate the interactions and feedbacks between the complex hydrodynamic-sediment-vegetation interface to understand the role of coastal vegetation on wave and flow attenuation which is essential for developing integrated nature-based engineering solutions against coastal and flood defence. The project will take a data-driven approach by combining laboratory experimentation and computational modelling.

The selected candidate will be affiliated to Swansea University EPSRC Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP) and will be a member of the Energy and Environment Research Group (EERG) of the Zienkiewicz Centre for Computational Engineering of the Faculty of Science and Engineering of Swansea University. EERG is involved in world class coastal and river engineering, hydrology and marine renewable energy research and host a dynamic postgraduate and post-doctoral research community.

Project supervisors: Professor Harshinie Karunarathna and Professor Dominic Reeve

Available resources/facilities: State of the art coastal engineering experimental facility, access to high performance computing cluster

Candidates should hold a minimum of an upper second class (2:1) honours degree (or its equivalent) or an MSc in Civil Engineering, Coastal/Ocean Engineering or a relevant field.

Programming in Fortran and MATLAB and, Data assimilation skills are desired.

We would normally expect the academic and English Language requirements (IELTS 6.5 overall with 5.5+ in each component) to be met by point of application. For details on the University’s English Language entry requirements, please visit –

Due to funding restrictions, this scholarship is open to UK/EU candidates only.

Funding Notes

This scholarship covers the full cost of UK/EU tuition fees and an annual stipend starting with £ 15,285.

There will be an additional funding available for project costs.

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