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Precision Metrology of Additively Manufactured Lattice Structures Using Industrial X-Ray Computed Tomography


   School of Computing and Engineering

  , , , Prof Paul Scott  Applications accepted all year round  Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Huddersfield United Kingdom Aerospace Engineering Applied Mathematics Automotive Engineering Bioengineering Biomedical Engineering Manufacturing Engineering Mechanical Engineering Mechatronics Mathematics Solid Mechanics

About the Project

Applications are invited from suitably qualified graduates for a fully funded PhD studentship (3 years) as part of a joint research program between the Future Metrology Hub (HUB) at the University of Huddersfield (UoH) UK and the Advanced Remanufacturing and Technology Centre (ARTC), A*STAR Singapore. The metrology HUB sets out to create ground-breaking embedded metrology and universal metrology informatics systems to be applied throughout the manufacturing value chain as an essential tool to achieve significant growth and productivity gains in UK manufacturing. The ARTC is a public-private partnership having a membership consortium with over 80 members, ranging from global multinational corporations (MNCs) to small and medium enterprises (SMEs). ARTC focuses on advanced manufacturing and remanufacturing and serves to accelerate the transfer of innovation from applied research to industrial applications.

The student will carry out the research both at UoH and ARTC. The student will build their foundation at UoH in the first year and then move to ARTC to continue further research in the next two years. The following writing-up year will be with UoH.

Project description

By selectively adding materials layer by layer, additive manufacturing (AM) enables the construction of complex geometries not possible with traditional manufacturing processes, e.g. lattice structures with a high degree of geometric complexity. In comparison to bulk materials, lightweight lattice materials designed with topology optimisation often possess superior mechanical, thermal and electrical performance. AM lattice structures have now found a wide range of applications in key industrial sectors. For instance, the heat exchanger with hyperbolic intertwined lattice structure has much larger surface areas, providing 50% higher heat dissipation efficiency than its conventional counterpart; lattices and functionally graded structures can be used in bone replacement implants to gain a more effective osseointegration process while retaining mandatory stiffness. However, the quality control and performance verification of lattices is a barrier that impedes their increased uptake, especially in safety critical and performance critical applications.

Dimensional measurements of lattice structures are essential to ensure that the fine structures have been made correctly, if the dimensions are wrong then the lattices may not achieve their designed function. Traditional tactile and optical measurement techniques are of limited use due to the line-of-sight restriction. This project aims to use X-ray Computed Tomography (XCT) to measure lattice structures, and to develop a spectrum of bespoke characterisation methods to assess lattice strut dimensions (e.g. thickness, diameters, roundness), strut connections (e.g. distance, uniformity/homogeneity), surface roughness, and defects (excess agglomeration of materials, broken/incomplete struts, internal porosity).

Scholarship details

This scholarship will cover a tax-free stipend of £ 15,609 (for 2021/22) per annum for one year in the UK, and tuition fees for three years. Two years of the scholarship will be funded under the A*STAR Research Attachment Programme (ARAP), which will cover:

·       Monthly stipend of S$2,700

·       One-time airfare grant of S$1,500

·       One-time settling-in allowance of S$1,000

·       Housing subsidy

·       Medical insurance

·       Conference allowance

·       IT allowance

More details can be found here:

https://www.a-star.edu.sg/Scholarships/for-graduate-studies/a-star-research-attachment-programme-(arap)

Supervision

The academic supervisor for this project is Prof Dame Xiangqian Jiang, with Dr Shan Lou , Dr Wenhan Zeng, and Prof Paul J Scott on the supervisory team, all based at UoH. The ARTC supervisors will be Dr Andrew Malcolm and Dr Joseph Lifton.

Candidate requirements

This scholarship is open to all UK and EU citizens.

Applicants must:

1.  Hold a high-grade qualification, at least the equivalent of a UK First or 2:1 class degree or MSc in engineering, mathematics, physics, or related disciplines

2.   Be proficient in both written and spoken English, and possess excellent presentation and communication skills

3.   Possess some basic experience and skills in metrology, additive manufacturing, programming and computer aided design.

Important dates

Application closing date: flexible (latest 01 Jun 2022)

Interview date: two weeks following shortlisting

Programme start date: Apr or Sep/Oct 2022

Informal enquiries

Informal enquiries can be addressed to Dr Lou ().

How to apply

Interested applicants should send an up-to-date curriculum vitae, academic transcript and certificates to to Prof. Dame Jiang () and Dr. Lou (). 


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