PhD student loans
The UK Government has recently introduced PhD loans of up to £25000 to UK and EU nationals, residing in England, for postgraduate research programmes starting in the academic year 2018-19. Read more here.
About the course
Brunel University London has partnered with the National Structural Integrity Research Centre to provide an opportunity for students to undertake in-depth research in combination with the industrial experience of TWI across the varied disciplines essential to structural integrity. Read more here.
Considering the expertise and track record of both Brunel and NSIRC-based staff, the following areas have been identified as the main research strengths within in the wider field of Structural Integrity:
- Dynamic response of materials and structures (modelling, experimental characterisation and design/optimisation for composites and metals);
- Structural health monitoring based on ultrasound wave propagation and acoustic emissions in solids (modelling, experimental validation, signal processing and sensors);
- Steel, concrete and hybrid structures (material design, manufacturing, modelling and experimental characterisation);
- Fatigue and fracture (modelling, experimental characterisation);
- Extreme loading (e.g. fire, earthquake, blast and progressive collapse)
- Fluid structure interaction (unboned flexible risers)
- Manufacturing (e.g. sheet metal forming, bulk forming, casting, extrusion, 3D printing).
The cutting-edge fundamental and applied research, in the above stated areas provides fertile environment for PhD students. While we welcome all multidisciplinary topics in the area of Structural Integrity, here is a list of potential research areas we would like to supervise:
- Anisotropic material modelling: Development of physically based constitutive model for the large deformation response and failure of target materials. This student will build upon existing research at Brunel in this area.
- Treatment of uncertainty including errors: Development of a methodology based on regression for characterising the variation in properties such as material properties and propagating this through to the consequent variation in the final structure.
- Hybrid spatial discretisation techniques based on coupling of FE and meshless techniques. This (combined with 1,2&3) will enable modelling of challenging problems characterised by failure/damage front, phase change or shock wave propagation.
- Material characterisation: how to practically determine material properties including variation for anisotropic materials – potential of using elastic wave propagation as one tool.
Found out more
A key aim of the PhD programme is to supply a stream of industry-ready, world-class engineers and scientists in structural integrity disciplines such as fail-safe design, corrosion control, structural health monitoring, ageing asset management and fitness for service.
Contact our Enquiries team.
Course Enquiries: +44 (0)1895 265599 (before you submit an application)
Admissions Office: +44 (0)1895 265265 (after you submit an application)
Research degrees evolve in different ways according to discipline. Find out about what progress might look like at each stage of study here: Research degree progress structure
PhD+ Award – An internship to work in the industry or perform a research outreach or enterprise activity.
PhD Plus is a career development scheme designed to provide an opportunity for excellent PhD students to undertake work experience and mentoring, and to facilitate their transfer into a career area of their choice. The awards are targeted at exceptional PhD students who have submitted their thesis within the expected submission date and will provide up to three months’ funded support for the period after submissions of their thesis and before the confirmation of the award. The precise number awards each year will depend on the quality of the applicants, up to a maximum 8 awards. The maximum amount to be awarded will be in line with RCUK rates for research training support grants: http://www.rcuk.ac.uk/skills/training/
Almost all our successful PhD students get one or more job offers before completing their PhD studies. In structural integrity, we have well established collaboration with a number of industrial partners from the following sectors automotive, aerospace, energy, transport, oil and gas and defence. These include Rolls Royce, Airbus, Augusta Westland, Eurocopter, Jaguar Land Rover, Aston Martin, Mercedes Petronas F1, McLaren F1, Williams F1, Network Rail, AWE, Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, BP, Shell, Lloyds Register, Zentech, Dunlop Oil and Marine, and TWI
At Brunel we provide many opportunities and experiences within your degree programme and beyond – work-based learning, professional support services, volunteering, mentoring, sports, arts, clubs, societies, and much, much more – and we encourage you to make the most of them, so that you can make the most of yourself.
» More about Employability
Entry criteria 2018/19
The general University entrance requirement for registration for a research degree is normally a First or Upper Second Class Honours degree. All international students must show evidence that they meet the English requirement for their course of study. The Senate reserves the right to assess the eligibility of applicants on an individual basis.
As part of our application process for entry on our research degree (MPhil and PhD) programmes, we ask you to provide a 500-1,000 word research statement, excluding any references/bibliography you may include, setting out your research motivation, ideas and aspirations. Learn how to prepare a research statement here.
Entry criteria are subject to review and change each academic year.
International and EU entry requirements
If your country or institution is not listed or if you are not sure whether your institution is eligible, please contact Admissions
This information is for guidance only by Brunel University London and by meeting the academic requirements does not guarantee entry for our courses as applications are assessed on case-by-case basis.
English language requirements
- IELTS: 6.5 (min 6 in all areas)
- Pearson: 58 (51 in all subscores)
- BrunELT: 65% (min 60% in all areas)
You can find out more about the qualifications we accept on our English Language Requirements page.
If you require a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK, you must prove knowledge of the English language so that we can issue you a Certificate of Acceptance for Study (CAS). To do this, you will need an IELTS for UKVI or Trinity SELT test pass gained from a test centre approved by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) and on the Secure English Language Testing (SELT) list. This must have been taken and passed within two years from the date the CAS is made.
Should you wish to take a pre-sessional English course to improve your English prior to starting your degree course, you must sit the test at an approved SELT provider for the same reason.
We offer our own BrunELT English Test and have pre-sessional English language courses for students who do not meet requirements or who wish to improve their English. You can find out more information on English courses and test options at the Brunel Language Centre.
Teaching and learning
Supervisors with insight
Our supervisors create knowledge and advance understanding, and equip research students with the confidence to apply what they have learnt for the benefit of society. Browse all potential supervisor profiles further here: Structural Integrity Theme Members Profiles. Supervisors provide mentoring, guidance and research leadership in their technical areas.
Find out more about working with the Supervisory Team here.
Dynamic response of materials and structures
James Campbell, Kevin Hughes, Tom De Vuyst, Nenad Djordjevic, Rui Cardoso, Bin Wang, Simon Show, Rade Vignjevic
Structural health monitoring based on ultrasound wave propagation and acoustic emissions in solids
Ray Kirby, Jane Lawrie, Matthias Maischak, Cristinel Mares, Tat-Hean Gan, Keming Yu, Aleksey Pichugin
Steel, concrete and hybrid structures
Asif Usmani, Katherine Cashell, Kai Tai Wan, Sheida Afshan, Xiangming Zhou, Hari-Babu Nadendla,
Fatigue and fracture
Sergey Mikhailov, John Whiteman, Luiz Wrobel, Keming Yu
Asif Usmani, James Campbell, Rade Vignjevic
Fluid structure interaction
Hamid Bahai, James Campbell, Tom De Vuyst, Evgeniya Nolde
Rui Cardoso, Kevin Hughes, Hari-Babu Nadendla, Jim Song, Asif Usmani, Giulio Alfano, Hamid Bahai, Rui Cardoso, Christopher Brown, Katherine Cashell, Tat-Hean Gan, Ray Kirby, Jane Lawrie, Matthias Maischak, Cristinel Mares, Sergey Mikhailov, Evgeniya Nolde, Aleksey Pichugin, John Whiteman, Simon Shaw, Matthias Winter, Luiz Wrobel, Xianming Zhou, Bin Wang, Kai Tai Wan, Keming Yu, Hari-Babu Nadendla, James Campbell, Kevin Hughes, Tom De Vuyst, Nenad Djordjevic, Matthias Winter, Rade Vignjevic
In structural integrity, we have well established collaboration with a number of industrial partners who have supported a range of fundamental and applied PhD research projects. Our partners include:
- Arts and Humanities Research Council
- AWE PLC
- British Council
- Caterpillar Inc
- Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the UK
- Constellium France SAS
- DSTL Commercial Services
- Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
- European Commission
- European Space Agency
- Higher Education Funding Council for England
- Intel Corporation USA
- Jaguar Land Rover
- Korea Institute of Industrial Technology
- mLED Limited
- National Aerospace Technology Programme
- Natural Environment Research Council
- Power OLEDs Ltd
- Science & Technology Facilities Council
- Technology Strategy Board
- The Worshipful Company of Tin Plate Workers Alias Wire Workers
- TWI Limited
Specialist equipment and facilities
The equipment available to our PhD students includes test machines for mechanical characterisation of materials, drop hammers, Hopkinson bars, X ray computed tomography, DIC. This is alongside computational facilities and CAD/CEA software (e.g. NSIRC cluster, CATIA, ABAQUS, LS-DAYNA, ANSYS, Mathcad, Mathematica,…)
Study environment for research students
Find out more: Study environment for research students
Excellent research support and training
Extensive training and support is offered to all research students by the Graduate School, with regular Masterclasses and individual advice on academic issues as part of the Researcher Development Programme. Read more about the available Research Support and Training.
Brunel's library is open 24 hours a day, has 400,000 books and 250,000 e-books, and an annual budget of almost £2m. Subject Information Specialists train students in the latest technology, digital literacy, and digital dissemination of scholarly outputs.
- state-of-the-art research information management tools including a research publication and grant database
- one of the largest UK’s full text repository
- an integrated data management system
- analytical tools such as Altmertic and InCites
- Open Access centrally managed fund
The degree is accredited by The Welding Institute as further learning for registration as a Chartered Engineer. Students working on projects in the field of non-destructive testing will also be able to acquire membership of BINDT (British Institute of Non-Destructive Testing).
Facts and figures
In the recent REF 2014 Assessment Engineering and Design ranked amongst London's biggest and best.
Brunel University London REF2014 Submission
Aeronautical, Mechanical, Chemical and Manufacturing Engineering
The Research Excellence Framework (REF) is a system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The results of the REF2014 have been made public in December 2014, replacing the previous REF conducted in 2008. The next REF will be undertaken in 2020. Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014 - A Guide for PhD Students
Fees and funding
Fees for 2018/19 entry
Full time: £4,260 / Part time: £2,130
Full time: £18,000 Part time: £9,000
Full time: £4,195 Part time: £2,097
Full time: £17,500 Part time: £8,750
We offer a range of PhD studentships, partial scholarships, and academic prizes, to help with your research fees. Explore external funding, particularly the Research Councils, as well as other support.
Additional course related costs
Fees quoted are per year and are subject to an annual increase.