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Ground (soil) modification caused by degrading (corroding) buried metallic utilities (pipes)

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  • Full or part time
    Prof David Chapman
  • Application Deadline
    Applications accepted all year round
  • Competition Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Competition Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

Iron (cast iron, ductile iron and steel) and other metallic products have historically been used frequently to make pipes for distribution of water and petroleum products globally, often buried in the ground which is chemically reactive and likely to induce degradation of the pipe / pipeline with time. Previously, these pipes were directly buried within the natural ground (varied properties along the length of the pipeline), but more recently has involved use of imported materials to support the mechanical behaviour of the pipes. However, It is important to understand that the ground support (physically and chemically) the pipes, and hence influences behaviour and durability of the pipeline. Also, there is still a limited / poor understanding of how the surrounding soils (particularly relatively reactive clays) influence degradation (corrosion), and most importantly is influenced by degradation (released corrosion products), which in turn influences the support provided to the pipeline.

This project aims to assess how clays (different clay types) are modified (geotechnical and geoenvironmental) by the corrosion of buried metallic pipes, and also assess how the ground (clay) modification can be succinctly characterised using robust geophysical, geotechnical and geochemical characterisation methodologies. These findings will support infrastructures and streetworks (including investments) decision making, and will be underpinned by appropriate laboratory experimental work and field trials.

Funding Notes

For suitably qualified (very good first degree) UK and European candidates there is the possibility of applying for competitive research funding. If you are an overseas candidate then you can also apply for this competitive funding, but it will only cover the equivalent of 'home' fees and you would need to make up the difference.

Self-funded applicants can also apply for this research.

How good is research at University of Birmingham in Civil and Construction Engineering?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 18.10

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

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