Urban air mobility vehicles (UAMVs) offer an opportunity to utilise airspace to vastly increase transport capacity and provide near door-to-door service. Most propulsion systems are based on electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) concepts, use multiple rotors. Electric propulsion leaves noise as the dominating emission at point of use. This prevents social acceptance and prevents widespread rapid growth of this technology.
The project aims to model flow and noise of key aircraft features including rotor sections, rotor tips and airframe interactions. High fidelity unsteady Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) such as Large-Eddy Simulation (LES) has been successfully used for jet, landing gear and aerofoil noise making use of High-Performance Computing (HPC). The detailed datasets produced will be explored using machine learning/AI.
This will inform noise reduction strategies and lower-fidelity modelling for entire aircraft. Working within a vibrant, multi-disciplinary team in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering there will also be opportunities to engage with internationally leading academics and industries.
Applicants will have or be expected to receive a first or upper-second class honours degree in Engineering, Computer Science, Design, Mathematics, Physics or a similar discipline. A Postgraduate Masters degree is not required but may be an advantage.
Research activities within the aerospace and aviation engineering degree programmes at Brunel cover a wide ranging and diverse field of topics. Academic staff involved within these programmes investigate fundamental and complex problems relating to aerodynamics and aeroacoustics, flight physics and performance, helicopter rotor dynamics and structural mechanics together with Computational Fluid Dynamics and Finite Elements Analysis code development and application.
Doctoral research programmes (PhDs) take a proud place in the world-class research environment and community at Brunel. PhD students are recognised and valued by their supervisors as an essential part of their departments and a key component of the university's overall strategy to develop and deliver world-class research.
A PhD programme is expected to take 3 years full-time or 6 years part-time, with intakes starting in January, April or October.
The general University entrance requirement for registration for a research degree is normally a First or Upper Second Class Honours degree (1st or 2:1) or an international equivalent. A Masters degree is a welcome, but not required, qualification for entry.
Find out how to apply for a PhD at Brunel
Excellent research support and training
The Graduate School provides a range of personal, professional and career development opportunities. This includes workshops, online training, coaching and events, to enable you to enhance your professional profile, refine your skills, and plan your next career steps as part of the Researcher Development Programme. The researcher development programme (RDP) offers workshops and seminars in a range of areas including progression, research management, research dissemination, and careers and personal development. You will also be offered a number of online, self-study courses on BBL, including Research Integrity, Research Skills Toolkit, Research Methods in Literature Review and Principles of Research Methods.
Brunel's Library is open 24 hours a day, has 400,000 books and 250,000 ebooks, and an annual budget of almost £2m. Subject information Specialists train students in the latest technology, digital literacy, and digital dissemination of scholarly outputs. As well as the physical resources available in the Library, we also provide access to a wealth of electronic resources. These include databases, journals and e-books. Access to these resources has been bought by the Library through subscription and is limited to current staff and students.
Dedicated research support staff provide guidance and training on open access, research data management, copyright and other research integrity issues.
Find out more: Brunel Library
You will receive tailored careers support during your PhD and for up to three years after you complete your research at Brunel. We encourage you to actively engage in career planning and managing your personal development right from the start of your research, even (or perhaps especially) if you don't yet have a career path in mind. Our careers provision includes online information and advice, one-to-one consultations and a range of events and workshops. The Professional Development Centre runs a varied programme of careers events throughout the academic year. These include industry insight sessions, recruitment fairs, employer pop-ups and skills workshops.