The Granular Mechanics and Industrial Infrastructure research group, at the School of Engineering of the University of Edinburgh, conducts fundamental research on the mechanics of granular materials and their interaction with industrial infrastructure, with broad applications in silo design, bulk solids handling, paste rheology, fluidisation and natural hazard mitigation. We are currently looking for candidates for the following funded PhD positions:
Experimental and numerical investigation of powder mixing
Powder mixing is a feature of many industrial processes, and the quality of the mixing can affect product quality and sometimes safety, e.g., blending excipients and active pharmaceutical ingredients in the pharmaceutical industry. A wide range of factors affect mixing quality including differences in particle size, shape or density of the components, moisture content, and the strength of electrostatic or other interaction forces. The number of influencing factors is one major reason why industrial mixing remains poorly understood. Furthermore, experimental approaches used to quantify the effectiveness of mixing are often limited, e.g., applicable only to unrealistically small systems, or only relevant for off-line analyses. In this project, a series of innovative, on-line experimental laboratory experiments will be conducted to evaluate mixing quality. These experiments will be complemented by discrete element simulations.
Contact: Dr Kevin Hanley ([email protected]
Applicants must be of outstanding academic merit and hold (or be expected to gain) either a first class honours degree (or the international equivalent) or an MSc with distinction (or the international equivalent). Enthusiastic and self-motivated candidates are sought with a solid background in civil, mechanical, chemical engineering, or in physics and mechanics. A good grasp of mechanics and experience in programming and computational modelling would be advantageous.