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Joint PhD with University of Manchester: Microscale fluid dynamics around coral surfaces

Project Description

This fully funded project will develop a new biophysical approach to coral studies, integrating mathematical modelling, numerical simulations and lab-on-chip experiments. Although the Great Barrier Reef spans more than 2,300km, fundamental processes driving the health and function of corals such as nutrient uptake, oxygen exchange and bacterial recruitment occur at sub-millimetre scales. Despite their importance, we still largely lack a quantitative understanding of the governing transport processes.

The PhD project will investigate three-dimensional fluid flows generated by corals and their physical/ecological consequences. Through an iterative approach involving mathematical modelling and experiments, the project will develop a mechanistic framework for understanding microscale biophysical processes at the coral surface. This will inform efforts in coral conservation and management and be broadly applicable to range of other problems in biology.

Throughout their candidature, the PhD student will work in an international cross-disciplinary research team, gaining a range of skills in fluid dynamics, continuum modelling, numerical analysis (including scientific computing), microfluidics, microscopy, and image processing. During their candidature, the student will spend at least 12 months at each of The Universities of Melbourne and Manchester, working with leading research groups in applied mathematics, fluid dynamics and coral biology.

Funding Notes

Candidates must meet the entry requirements of both Universities to be accepted. They will spend at least a year at each institution over the course of their candidature and be eligible to graduate with a jointly awarded PhD recognised with a testamur from each University.

Minimum entry requirements for a PhD at Melbourne are summarised here: View Website

All participants have access to UoM living allowance support. Scholarships are awarded for 3 years, with the possibility of 6 months extension. All participants receive a UoM tuition fee waiver for up to 4 years.

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