Research Studentship in Solid Mechanics and Impact Engineering

Project: Multi-scale modelling of structural integrity

3.5-year D.Phil. studentship
Supervisor: Professor Nik Petrinic

The “Advanced Simulation and Modelling of Engineering Systems” (ASiMoV) Prosperity Partnership is a ground-breaking 5-year project that seeks to develop the next generation of engineering simulation and modelling techniques, with the aim of developing the world's first high-fidelity simulation of a complete gas-turbine engine during operation. It will require breakthroughs across the simulation domain (mathematics, algorithms, software, security and computer architectures) and uniquely combines fundamental engineering and computational science research to address a challenge that is well beyond the capabilities of today’s state-of-the-art. The project is jointly led by EPCC, the supercomputing centre at the University of Edinburgh, and Rolls-Royce; collaborating with the Universities of Bristol, Cambridge, Oxford and Warwick. ASiMoV is looking to recruit a cohort of a total of 10 PhD candidates to join the existing body of researchers. The students would be expected to take up their positions in autumn 2019.

The Impact Engineering Team of the University of Oxford is seeking an outstanding candidate to join as DPhil student in Engineering Science. The selected candidate will carry out research in the field of Computational Mechanics, focusing on numerical simulations of thermo-mechanical systems. A multi-scale approach will be used for analysing components rapidly loaded beyond their ultimate strength. In particular, the issues with automatic dicretisation and mapping of fields between length scales will be addressed. The student will collaborate and meet regularly with corresponding academic research teams in ASIMOV consortium, including researchers from Rolls-Royce plc. This will enable the selected candidate to focus on the challenges arising from multi-scale analyses of thermo-mechanical aspects of material and structural integrity by performing their numerical simulations on advanced high-performance computing platforms.


This studentship is open to all students. UK/EU students are eligible for a full award (fees plus stipend). Overseas students are eligible for a stipend and fees at Home/EU level. In exceptional circumstances, an Overseas student may be eligible for fees at the Overseas fee rate for the course.

Award Value

University tuition fees are covered at the level set for UK/EU students, as are Oxford college fees (c. £7,730 in total p.a.). The stipend (tax-free maintenance grant) is c. £15,009 p.a. for the first year, and at least this amount for a further two and a half years.

Candidate Requirements

Prospective candidates will be judged according to how well they meet the following criteria:

  • A first class honours degree in Computer Science or Computational Mechanics
  • Deep understanding of computer architectures
  • Good programming skills of Matlab, Python, Tcl/Tk, Fortran or C/C++
  • Basic knowledge of Linux and the following programming tools: git, CMake, IDEs for C/C++
  • Demonstrable experience in implementation of numerical methods for solving partial differential equations
  • Excellent English written and spoken communication skills

The following skills are desirable but not essential:

  • Familiarity with CAD, Finite Element Method based discretisation (meshing) and simulation software such as: Solidworks, HyperMesh, Abaqus, LS-DYNA or Comsol
  • Programing experience for GPUs or HPCs

Application Procedure

Informal enquiries are encouraged and should be addressed to Professor Nik Petrinic.

Candidates must submit a graduate application form and are expected to meet the graduate admissions criteria. Details are available on the course page of the University website.

Please quote 19ENGMM-NP(msm) in all correspondence and in your graduate application.

Application deadline

Apply now

Start date

October 2020


Dr Mattia Montanari