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Understanding the Properties of Historic Architectural Terracotta for Recreation.

Department of Architecture & Civil Engineering

About the Project

Project team: Dr Daniel Maskell, Dr Richard ball

Informal queries should be directed to Dr Dan Maskell ()


Many historic buildings in the UK are clad with terracotta which is susceptible to weathering and eventually requires replacement. The restoration process is expensive and a lack of understanding of the physical and chemical properties of terracotta makes it difficult to specify the optimum material. There is also a demand for geometrically precise fired tiles with do not require cutting to size.
This PhD project will develop a new understanding of the firing process and how the physical and chemical properties of terracotta relate to its durability. Working closely with industrial and academic stakeholders the successful applicant will use a range of advanced materials characterisation techniques to optimise the manufacture of replacement terracotta. A strong aptitude for solid state chemistry and ability to use spectroscopic, electron optical and X-ray techniques will be essential. In addition, the successful applicant must also understand the environmental physical and chemical degradation and the relationship with engineering properties. Bath is well placed to provide the necessary training to enable the student to take full advantage of the world class equipment necessary to undertake this project.
This PhD is ideally suited for a highly motivated student with a degree in a physical sciences or engineering discipline.


Applicants should hold, or expect to receive, an undergraduate First or Upper Second Class UK Honours degree or MSc distinction (or non-UK equivalent). in Civil Engineering, Material Science, Chemistry or a similar field. To be eligible applicants must either be UK citizens or citizens of any other EU member state. English language entry requirements must be met at the time of application to be considered for funding, see


Formal applications should be made via the University of Bath’s online application form for a PhD in Architecture and Civil Engineering. Please ensure that you state the full project title and lead supervisor name on the application form.
More information about applying for a PhD at Bath may be found here:

Expected start date: 18 January 2021

Funding Notes

A full studentship is available to UK/EU applicants only, and will include UK/EU tuition fees, a training support fee and a tax-free stipend (£15,285 p.a. 2020/21 rate) for up to 3.5 years. EU students are eligible to apply if they have been resident in the UK for 3 years prior to the funding commencing.

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