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Dstl Research PhD Studentship: Resilient, ultra-dense mesh networks for infrastructureless communications

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Thursday, April 30, 2020
  • Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

There are many situations in which high rate, reliable wireless communications are crucial but where the necessary infrastructure (base stations, etc) is either unavailable, non-existent or damaged. This applies particularly to disaster situations, the emergency services, or the military: in these cases the use of an infrastructureless (sometimes known as ad-hoc) network is very appealing. Increasingly the extent and/or user density required in these networks means that direct communication via a single hop is not possible, and therefore some user terminals (or dedicated relay nodes) should forward signals to other users, resulting in a multi-hop mesh network. However when conventional networking protocols have been used such networks have often performed poorly, particularly because of interference within the network. However new wireless networking techniques have recently been developed which may overcome these problems by exploiting interfering signals.

The objectives of this PhD studentship are to provide a fundamental analysis of the capacity of networks using these new interference-exploiting paradigms, and then to develop practical technologies to both implement and coordinate these networks. This is expected to involve machine learning, and especially innovative distributed machine learning approaches.

The successful candidate should have strong analytic skills, an interest in communication network performance evaluation and excellent programming skills. Experience in computer simulation using Matlab would be an advantage.

Academic entry requirements:
Candidates must have (or expect to obtain) a minimum of a UK upper second-class honours degree (2.1) or equivalent in Electronic Engineering, Computer Science, or a related subject. Prior research or industry experience would also be an advantage.

How to apply:
Applicants must apply via the University’s online application system at Please read the application guidance first so that you understand the various steps in the application process. To apply, please select the PhD in Electronic Engineering for October 2020 entry. Please specify in your PhD application that you would like to be considered for this studentship.

Funding Notes

This PhD studentship will cover the three years of tuition fees at the home/EU rate (£4,407 in 2020/21) and a stipend at the standard research council rate for a period of up to 3 years (£15,285 in 2020/21). The studentship is open to UK/EU applicants only.

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