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Design Optimisation of Functional Smart Structures

Project Description

Smart structures have a wide range of applications in aerospace, wind energy, automotive, bio-mechanics and robotics, to name a few. Smart structures can be classified as extrinsically smart, in which the structure has integrated actuators, or as intrinsically smart, which are made of materials such as elastically tailored composites, functionally graded materials and poroelastic materials. Examples of elastically tailored composites and functionally graded materials include morphing aerodynamic surfaces, which can change their shapes to produce optimal performance dependant on operating conditions and provide load control to reduce stresses. This has potential applications in wind turbine blade to enhance the power capture capability and to increase its lifespan and therefore to reduce the cost of energy produced and well-stablished applications in aerospace industry. Poroelastic materials have also a wide range of applications, including but not limited to artificial bone scaffold and tissue, reversible crash protection elements, micro actuators and motors, and adaptive aerodynamic surfaces. This project aims at multi-scale modelling and design optimisation of intrinsically smart structures with one of the abovementioned applications.

The successful candidate should have (or expect to achieve) a minimum of a UK Honours degree at 2.1 or above (or equivalent) in Mechanical, Aerospace or Structural Engineering. Applicants must have good background knowledge in advanced materials and structural analysis and must be willing to develop strong background knowledge in optimisation techniques and computational mechanics (FEA and CFD) during the course of their PhD study.

Knowledge of:
Essential: Engineering materials, structural analysis and fundamentals of computational mechanics
• Optimisation techniques
• Programming in MATLAB


Formal applications can be completed online: You should apply for Degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Engineering, to ensure that your application is passed to the correct person for processing.


Informal inquiries can be made to Dr A Maheri () with a copy of your curriculum vitae and cover letter. All general enquiries should be directed to the Postgraduate Research School ().

Funding Notes

There is no funding attached to this project. It is for self-funded students only.

How good is research at Aberdeen University in General Engineering?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 38.60

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

Click here to see the results for all UK universities

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