Optimisation of Landing Gear at Overall Aircraft Level PhD

   School of Aerospace, Transport and Manufacturing (SATM)

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  Dr C Lawson  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

About the Project

This 4-year PhD opportunity is sponsored by UKRI/EPSRC, Airbus and Cranfield University. Eligible students could receive a tax-free bursary up to £17,312 per annum. The project aims to investigate future aircraft landing gear designs and operations in the context of a holistic approach. The landing gear has important structural and system interfaces with the rest of the aircraft in providing its functions to enable taxi, take-off and landing.

Research objectives include:

  • Close cooperation with the ongoing Airbus research in the field, including for new aircraft configurations.
  • Generating new landing gear designs for candidate aircraft.
  • Optimising the landing gear and aircraft energy during the terminal phases of operation.

If we are to stabilise the global temperature below the 1.5°C threshold set by the Paris Agreement, rapid action is to be taken. The MINIMAL (MInimum enviroNmental IMpact ultra-efficient cores for Aircraft propuLsion) project will address this, contributing to a radical transformation in air transport by providing disruptive ultra-efficient and low emission technologies that will, in combination with the aviation ecosystem, sustainably reduce the climate impact of aviation. This will be accomplished with the introduction of climate-optimised new propulsion systems based on composite cycle engine technology, that provides flexibility with respect to operations, and that has the potential to eliminate the large sources of effective radiative forcing.

This PhD project within the MINIMAL project will provide proof of concept that large CO2 and non-CO2 reductions can be achieved by replacing the conventional constant pressure combustion core with opposed piston composite cycle engine (CCE) technology. The focus of this PhD study includes:

  • Assess the suitability of opposed piston (OP) cores for high bypass turbofan engines.
  • Develop preliminary performance and NOx emission models for H2-fuelled OP cores variants.
  • Design core inlet and exhaust ports and flow mixing systems. Assess bounce-chamber operation and internal sealing designs.
  • Develop performance models for CCE with OP core sizing, general arrangements and weight estimates for cycle variants with/without turbocharging, steam injection, exhaust gas recirculation and intercooling.
  • Perform multi-disciplinary engine cycle and trajectory optimisation studies to assess trade-offs between fuel burn, NOx and persistent contrail avoidance trajectories.

The prospective PhD researcher is expected to have experience in modelling gas turbine and/or piston engine systems.

Entry requirements

Applicants should have a first or second class UK honours degree or equivalent in a related discipline. This project would suit a candidate with a keen interest in Mechanical Engineering, ~Energy Systems, Mechatronics, Materials Science, Optimization or Computational Science, with a command on modelling and a strong passion to learn. The candidate should be self-motivated and have good communication skills. Furthermore, ability to write publications that succinctly describe complex systems and novel concepts is a requirement. A MSc in a related topic would be an advantage.

How to apply

For further information please contact:

Name: Craig Lawson or Martin Skote

If you are eligible to apply for this studentship, please complete the online application form.

Funding Notes

This studentship is open to only UK applications. Funded studentships will only be awarded to exceptional candidates due to the competitive nature of the funding.
Sponsored by UKRI/EPSRC, Airbus and Cranfield University. Eligible students could receive have their Home tuition fees paid plus a tax-free bursary up to £17,312 per annum. To be eligible, you must have a UK connection.

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