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EngD - Cokebusters/FIND CDT - Next Generation Smartpigs

   Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering

About the Project

Key Facts:

A 4-year EngD funded by Cokebusters and the FIND CDT.

It will focus on the development of technologies for next generations smartpigs.

Based at Cokbusters facility near Chester and at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow.

The FIND CDT offers a competitive stipend of £22,109 per year which is not taxed.

Cokebusters is a rapid growth SME (currently around 100 staff) with offices in the UK and USA. Cokebusters services an international market.


The Cokebusters’ intelligent pig is unique; a single-bodied, untethered, bi-direction inspection tool. The intelligent pig is suited not only to the complex serpentine coil networks found within heaters and steam generators, but also to other process piping systems and pipelines. Ultrasonic in nature, the intelligent pig is propelled by liquid flow. Data is post processed to create informed reporting and the generation of navigable 3D image files. 

The EngD will research technologies for next generation smartpigs. They will consider NDT methods and signal processing techniques with the aim being to provide some (or all) of the following improvements: 

· Increased coverage 

· Increased POD for small defects 

· Add an ability to detect cracks 

· Add Internal surface profiling/imaging 

· Add an ability to work in product rather than water 

· Add an ability to work in gas-filled pipes


General FIND requirements

Experience with NDT, embedded electronics and PCBs would be beneficial.

About Cokebusters 

Established in 2005, Cokebusters has become a leading service provider in the field of mechanical decoking and in-line inspection of process piping within fired heaters, HRSG/OTSG boilers, transfer lines and pipelines. From our two headquarters in the United Kingdom and the United States, we are able to consistently deliver high quality services to energy industries worldwide. 


The FIND-CDT is a leading international centre of excellence that provides doctoral training in sensing, imaging and analysis for the vital field of Non-Destructive Evaluation (NDE).

We bring universities and industrial companies together to deliver research projects that makes a difference. EDF, Airbus and E.ON are just a few of the companies our students have worked with to create real impact.

Within eight years all the major end-users of NDE will have at least one of our doctoral graduates progressing to senior research and technical roles. These graduates will be instrumental in making the UK industry a world leader in the integration of NDE into the anticipated fourth industrial revolution.


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