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KESS2 PhD Studentship: Artificial Intelligence Methods - Automated Defect Recognition of Ultrasonic Data in NDT

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Friday, October 04, 2019
  • Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

Project Description

The School of Engineering at the University of Wales Trinity St David and TWI Ltd are seeking a top class candidate to undertake research leading to the award of a 3 year PhD awarded by the University of Wales Trinity St David. As a Doctoral student you will have unrivalled access to some of the best teaching and research facilities in the world. During the 4 years you will spend approximately 9 months on advanced technical and professional development courses – usually spending the first year at University of Wales Trinity St David and the remaining time at TWI Technology Centre, Wales.

Project Outline

Non-Destructive Testing (NDT) is used across all industry sectors in order to assist in structural integrity assessments of safety critical assets. In particular, ultrasonic testing is the most far reaching and commonly used inspection method for sub-surface inspection, due to its portability, high probability of flaw detection, flaw sizing accuracy, affordability of equipment and avoids health and safety issues arising from ionising radiation associated with radiographic techniques. However, ultrasonic data can be difficult to interpret and signals which may appear to be flaws can in fact be an artefact arising from geometry or simply material noise.

The use of Machine Learning / Artificial Intelligence (ML/AI) is now commonplace among a wide variety of industry sectors, including computer gaming, marketing and security. While some work has been carried out for NDT, there are a lack of commercially available systems that exploit the technology. Primarily this is due to the complex nature of NDT components, inspection parameters and obtainable data. Consequently, there is a real need to determine the applicability of a range of AI techniques for use in ultrasonic inspection and for NDT in a wider context.

Candidate Requirements

Candidates should have a relevant degree at 2.1 minimum, or an equivalent overseas degree, in engineering, physics, computing or a related subject. Overseas applicants should also submit IELTS results (minimum 6.5) if applicable. Good team-working, observational and communication skills are essential. Previous experience of electronics design, fabrication and build would be advantageous, however training and hands-on experience will be provided. The project will require occasional travel on a short-term basis within the UK and overseas. A Baseline Personnel Security Standard (BPSS) organised by TWI must be achieved under the condition of this offer.

How to apply

A completed application package should be submitted to Dr Matt Briggs by the 4th October 2019. Applications received after this point will not be considered. Hard copy may be sent to
Dr Matt Briggs
Research, Innovation and Enterprise Services
University of Wales, Trinity Saint David.
J-Shed, Suit 10 / 11.
Kings Road
Swansea
SA1 8PL

Shortlisted candidates will be informed 10th October 2019
Interviews will be held w/c 14th October 2019

Application package:
Please download the following documents from the UWTSD website here
http://www.uwtsd.ac.uk/rdp/funding-and-projects/kess-ii/
• KESS II Participant Application Form
• Supporting Documents mentioned on each form
To discuss the project please contact:
TWI – Nick Couling
UWTSD – Peter Charlton -
To discuss the application process, please contact
Dr Matt Briggs.

Funding Notes

Funded by KESS East. Knowledge Economy Skills Scholarships is a pan-Wales higher level skills initiative led by Bangor University on behalf of the HE sector in Wales. It is part funded by the Welsh Government’s European Social Fund (ESF) convergence programme for West Wales and the Valleys.


This studentship consists of full UK/EU tuition fees at UK/EU rate, as well as a tax-free Doctoral Stipend starting at £14,628 p.a. for 2019/20. This will be topped up by TWI to a circa £20K pa for the first year rising to £24K as part of an initiative known as AEMRI (Advanced Engineering Materials Research Institute), which is funded by the Welsh European Funding Office (WEFO) using European Regional Development Funds (ERDF).
Each scholarship has an additional budget for travel, equipment/consumables and training to support your research. KESS PhD Scholarship holders do not pay fees.

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