Rory is researching the response of sand soils to small strain cyclic loading as part of the Wind and Marine Energy Systems and Structures (WAMESS) CDT. Previously, he graduated with a first class MEng degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of Southampton specialising in development of micro-hydropower solutions. Outside of academia Rory is a competitive sailor including as part of the Oxford University Yacht Club yachting team.
Rory’s research concerns the development of a constitutive model of sandy soils under cyclic loading, with particular focus on the conditions found around offshore wind turbine monopile foundations. The research is centred around the results of soil element tests – cyclic triaxial and cyclic simple shear. The tests are carried out on reconstituted sand samples, due to the tendency of sandy soils to break apart when loads are released. The results will be used to develop and calibrate a constitutive soil model, which will seek to improve the currently available models’ shortcomings with respect to cyclic loading. This project is novel in seeking to combine both cyclic and static loads into a single constitutive model. The element tests will be carried out at the Fugro lab in Wallingford, an industry partner.