Graduate Opportunity

PhD Studentship - Fatigue Characterisation of Composites at Cryogenic Temperatures

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The project:

The materials and design techniques used in superconducting whole-body Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) magnets have been refined over time and now make more extensive use of composite materials than previously. Material combinations in use include Glass Fibre Reinforced Polymers (GFRP), electrical insulation, encapsulation resin and superconducting wire. Because of the high precision of the magnetic field required in MRI systems, and the high electromagnetic forces that are induced, this requires a unique combination of GRP composite and coil windings.

Siemens at a glance – Electrification, Automation and Digitalisation

Siemens is positioned along the value chain of electrification, featuring strong competencies in automation and digitalisation to help its customers increase efficiency and create value.

The composites constituents and adhesive joints are subjected to very high loads during operation and also transportation, that lead to stress states that may be critical drivers for design and structural integrity. Thus, the design and management of the thermal mismatch of the constituents and the residual stresses induced by these, as well a detailed understanding of operational and transport conditions are crucial for the development of reliable and safe MRI magnets.

The overarching objective of this project is to assess the transportation induced fatigue behaviour and fatigue life of composite cylinder/superconducting coil assemblies used for MRI magnets, taking into account the unique combination of materials and the complex interactions existing in the MRI magnet construction and operational lifecycle.

The project aims and objectives are:

  • Identification and characterisation of the critical load and failure mode for fatigue of composite cylinder/superconducting coil assemblies used for MRI magnets during transportation
  • Characterisation of the fatigue behaviour and strength of MRI magnet specific materials, and composite cylinder/superconducting coil assemblies used for MRI magnets, for the identified failure modes including the development of suitable predictive modelling tools and experimental characterisation techniques
  • Formulation of suitable design rules for application of the MRI magnet fatigue strength data measured.

Candidate requirements:

  • Applicants must hold/achieve a minimum of a master’s degree (or international equivalent) in a science, mathematics or engineering discipline.
  • The ideal candidate will have a basic understanding and experience with mechanics and design of composite materials, finite element analysis, experimental characterisation of materials.


This Icase award studentship is available from Sept 2020 and will cover the following for 4 years:

  • Tuition fees at Home/UK rate
  • Tax free stipend
  • A top-up from the industrial sponsor is included.


How to Apply

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Opportunity Overview

  • June 15th, 2020
  • £20,000 + benefits
  • Masters and above
  • Bristol
    (Show map)

Preferred Disciplines...

  • Analytics
  • Chemistry
  • Electrical
  • Electronic
  • Maths
  • Mechanical
  • Physics
  • Science

Also Accepting...
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