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Dr V Niasar , Dr Masoud Babaei Applications accepted all year round Self-Funded PhD Students Only
Manchester United Kingdom Agricultural Sciences Applied Mathematics Chemical Engineering Physics

About the Project

Interaction between soil-plants and nutrients is very complex as there clearly influence the physical and chemical processes involved such as water and nutrient flow, fate of nutrients in soil, nutrient uptake processes, change of chemical properties of soils. This project outlines the modelling of physical and chemical processes in the system of crop-soil-nutrients interaction.  The PhD candidate will work in the Integrated Multiscale Porous Media Research (IMPRES) Group which has an established track record in developing novel computational and experimental research related to porous media applications.


The applicant needs to be competent in computational research and familiar with programming (e.g. C++, FORTRAN), linear algebra and numerical solution of partial differential equations. The PhD student needs to have excellent team working and willing to collaborate with other team members of IMPRES. Additionally, professional writing of reports and scientific papers is essential for this project.


The applicant should be resourceful, critical thinker, extremely motivated towards high quality research, and ethical in research and collaboration with others. 


IMPRES group - established in 2014 by Dr. Vahid Niasar- develop computational and experimental techniques to investigate multiphase flow, reactive transport, solid-fluid and fluid-fluid interfaces, and non-classical theories of porous materials to address fundamental problems in engineering and natural applications such as reservoir engineering, hydrogeology, environmental engineering, agricultural engineering, fuel cells, and membrane. Our mission is to enhance the in-depth understanding of fundamental porous media processes as well as to improve the numerical upscaling methods for multi-scale coupled problems.

Candidates are expected to hold (or be about to obtain) a minimum upper second class honours degree (or equivalent) in a related area / subject of engineering, mechanical/civil/environmental engineering.  Candidates with experience in numerical programming, modelling and simulations to solve partial differential equartions  will be preferred for this position.

For information on how to apply for this project, please visit the Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health Doctoral Academy website ( Informal enquiries may be made directly to the primary supervisor. On the online application form select PhD Chemical Engineering.

For international students we also offer a unique 4 year PhD programme that gives you the opportunity to undertake an accredited Teaching Certificate whilst carrying out an independent research project across a range of biological, medical and health sciences. For more information please visit

Funding Notes

Applications are invited from self-funded students. This project has a Band 1 fee. Details of our different fee bands can be found on our website (View Website). For information on how to apply for this project, please visit the Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health Doctoral Academy website (View Website).
Equality, diversity and inclusion is fundamental to the success of The University of Manchester, and is at the heart of all of our activities. The full Equality, diversity and inclusion statement can be found on the website View Website


1- Direct characterization of solute transport in unsaturated porous media using fast X-ray synchrotron microtomography, Sharul Hasan, Vahid Niasar, Nikolaos K Karadimitriou, Jose RA Godinho, Nghia T Vo, Senyou An, Arash Rabbani, Holger Steeb, PNAS, 2020
2- Soil Chemistry Aspects of Predicting Future Phosphorus Requirements in Sub‐Saharan Africa; D Magnone, VJ Niasar, AF Bouwman, AHW Beusen, SE van der Zee, Journal of Advances in Modeling Earth Systems, 2019, 11 (1), 327-337
3- Efficiency of phosphorus resource use in Africa as defined by soil chemistry and the impact on crop production
D Magnone, AF Bouwman, SE van der Zee, SZ Sattari, AHW Beusen, Energy Procedia , 2017, 123, 97-104
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