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Fully-Funded Doctoral Studentship: A new computational model with applications for droplet impingement and spreading on solid surfaces

Project Description

Closing date for applications - 20th December 2019
Starting date - 1st October 2020

Durham University is seeking applications from suitably qualified individuals interested in pursuing a PhD programme of study who can demonstrate evidence of academic excellence at undergraduate and/or Masters level, as well as evidence of sufficient research skills to undertake the project.

Droplet impingement and spreading on solid surfaces is an everyday occurrence; such interactions being of great importance with many applications across industry (spray painting, fuel injection, etc.) and the biosciences (crop protection, drug delivery, etc.). They comprise a rich variety of fluid mechanics facets, such as interfacial and multiphase flow as well as moving contact lines separating the three phases involved – liquid, solid and air – with the flow dynamics dependent on the solid’s surface chemistry and roughness, together with the presence and distribution of irregular microscale spatial heterogeneities and the surface’s overall nature (whether rigid or flexible and indeed its permeability). Past modelling studies have been restricted in the main to the simpler problem of either two-dimensional or axisymmetric flow on a stationary rigid wall, three-dimensional impingements remaining computationally challenging. This project will, therefore, address and overcome these issues based on new computational model exploring a variety of flow conditions and the associated physics to build better understanding of the fundamental aspects of droplet-solid interactions.

The holder of the studentship will work as part of a team involving PhD researchers and postdocs. He/she will also have the possibility to get involved with applications in biological and energy-related systems offering an exciting and extensive research training opportunity whatever the career aspirations of the successful applicant might lie. The project will provide specialist training in both the use and development of state-of-the-art numerical, modelling and CFD methods, all of which represent an attractive and widely transferable skill set.

Candidate Requirements

We are interested to hear from graduates in engineering (chemical, mechanical, process), mathematics, physics, computer science and related subjects, with an interest in becoming part of the above project and holding, or due to graduate with 2:1 honours degree (or equivalent). As well as having excellent communication skills, written and verbal, experience of one or more of the following topics would be advantageous: fluid mechanics, mathematical modelling, numerical methods, computer programming, high-performance computing, CFD. Your application should include: an up-to-date CV, two reference letters, copies of academic certificates and transcripts and evidence of English language ability (as per University regulations).

General enquiries should be made to Dr S. Veremieiev () or Prof P.H. Gaskell (), including requests for further information. Applications can be made directly on line, designated for the attention of Dr S. Veremieiev, at:

Funding Notes

The UK/EU/International studentship is fully funded for 3.5 years with a tax-free stipend at the RCUK rate (currently £15,009 per annum).


[1] Roisman, I. and C. Tropea, Impact of a drop onto a wetted wall: description of crown formation and propagation. Journal of Fluid Mechanics, 2002. 472: p. 373-397.
[2] Vander Wal, R.L., G.M. Berger, and S.D. Mozes, Droplets splashing upon films of the same fluid of various depths. Experiments in fluids, 2006. 40(1): p. 33-52.
[3] Savva, N. and S. Kalliadasis, Two-dimensional droplet spreading over topographical substrates. Physics of Fluids, 2009. 21(9).
[4] Karapetsas, G., N.T. Chamakos, and A.G. Papathanasiou, Efficient modelling of droplet dynamics on complex surfaces. Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter, 2016. 28(8): p. 085101.

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