If you wish to investigate a specific problem in design, manufacture and construction of structures, you may be interested in studying as a research student here. I have come back to academia after 15 years in industry, establishing my own company and being involved in over 130 projects related to spatial structure. The University has given me the opportunity to explore my ideas in an international academic environment under the guidance of supervisors who are experts in the field.
From optimising the management of large-scale complex networks, through the long-term behaviour and interactions of structures and soils with their surroundings, down to the development of new materials and the monitoring and control of air and water quality, our research seeks to support the design, delivery and management of efficient and sustainable infrastructure in the widest of contexts.
The Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering is committed to providing research students with access to a range of experimental facilities, analytical services, computer systems and associated technical support.
Over the past five years there has been significant investment in the development of a suite of flexible, multi-use, experimental facilities and other specialist resources.
This includes major refurbishments, and re-equipment, of the laboratories supporting research in construction materials, the testing of large-scale structures and for the study of water and related health issues.
Most recently a new Geomechanics Laboratory has been created with the capacity to characterise soils and study soil-structure interaction problems under controlled environmental conditions.
By sharing resources with other departments across the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences we are able to support multi-disciplinary, multi-scale research which spans traditional subject boundaries.
This is in keeping with the Faculty’s ethos of positive engagement with the world and enables science-led enquiry to create engineered solutions to industrial and socially relevant problems both nationally and internationally.
Our PhD programme offers the opportunity to undertake research across the range of subjects covered by the three research centres within the Department and the wider research interests of the Faculty.
As might be expected the research community within the Department is diverse and multi-disciplinary with students coming from a variety of backgrounds, including civil and mechanical engineering, environmental engineering and associated disciplines such as physics and chemistry.
When combined with the wide range of skills and interests of the academic they form a strong group of civil, structural and environmental engineers who are working together to create, maintain and enhance our environment.
Students benefit from the monthly research seminars held in the Department. These aim to promulgate research outputs and encourage discussion of their implications within the wider community.
They also enable individual researchers to develop and improve their presentation skills and explore new concepts, ideas and approaches with fellow students and the academic staff.
In support of this the Department strives to maintain a friendly and supportive environment for its postgraduate research students and encourages an active engagement with staff at all stages in the degree process.
Those applying for registration as a research student must hold either a BSc, BEng or MEng degree in a relevant subject area at, or above, the 2.1 level, or an MSc with an average mark (normally) exceeding 70 per cent.
Those applying with qualifications from overseas universities should seek advice from the Postgraduate Admissions team.
Researchers with the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering typically work within one of three main research areas:
Why not discover more about our research?
We offer modern facilities in areas such as:
The above facilities are supported by a team of technical and research staff who able to provide appropriate advice in the design and implementation of experimental programmes. In addition, the Department supports its research community through the provision of computer systems for both data acquisition and analysis.
It also provides access to a wide range of advanced analysis software for modelling across a range of scales including the response of large structures (and their foundations) to dynamic and static loads, the deformation and fracture behaviour of components and materials, the constitutive response of compacted granular soils under stress and the dispersion of air- and water-borne pollutants within the environment.
The Department strives to maintain a friendly environment that enables its postgraduate research students to explore new concepts informally with staff.
You will benefit from the monthly research seminars held in the Department which encourage peer-based discussions of current research problems and help develop your individual presentation and communication skills.
There are a number of fully funded PhD studentships for suitably qualified UK and EU nationals who can demonstrate the appropriate residency requirements. Other funding opportunities are also available within different research centres.