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Fracture assessment of large-scale structural components

You will join the internationally recognised researchers in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. This fracture mechanics-oriented research project will be focused on the crack-tip constraint effect.

The aim of the project is to improve the correlation between fracture toughness values measured from small-scale laboratory specimens and large-scale components. It is expected to develop an analytical approach to determine the size of various fracture specimens and their crack lengths resulting in the crack-tip stress field similar to that seen in a real cracked structural component. The approach will be validated by performing fracture toughness tests and finite element simulations of fracture specimens and large-scale components.

You are required to demonstrate your ability to use or learn the commercial finite element software Abaqus or an alternative open-source package for modelling of cracked bodies. Knowledge of solid mechanics, theoretical fracture mechanics and experimental methods for measuring fracture mechanics parameters is desirable.


How to apply

If you are interested in applying for the above PhD topic please follow the steps below:

  1. Contact the supervisor by email or phone to discuss your interest and find out if you would be suitable. Supervisor details can be found on this topic page. The supervisor will guide you in developing the topic-specific research proposal, which will form part of your application.
  2. Click on the 'Apply here' button on this page and you will be taken to the relevant PhD course page, where you can apply using an online application.
  3. Complete the online application indicating your selected supervisor and include the research proposal for the topic you have selected.

Good luck!

This is a self funded topic

Brunel offers a number of funding options to research students that help cover the cost of their tuition fees, contribute to living expenses or both. See more information here: The UK Government is also offering Doctoral Student Loans for eligible students, and there is some funding available through the Research Councils. Many of our international students benefit from funding provided by their governments or employers. Brunel alumni enjoy tuition fee discounts of 15%.

Meet the Supervisor(s)

Marius Gintalas - Dr Marius Gintalas obtained his doctoral degree in Mechanical Engineering studying fracture toughness measurement methods under impact load. He continued research in fracture mechanics field on crack tip constraint in specimens and large scale pipes as a postdoctoral research associate at Manchester University. Later, Marius joined the University of Cambridge for his second postdoctoral project. He worked on characterisation of heavily plastically deformed martensitic carbon steel using transmission electron microscopy and synchrotron radiation. Also, analysed strengthening mechanisms in non-deformed and deformed quenched and tempered martensite. Marius joined The Welding Institute (TWI) Ltd as a senior project leader after postdoctoral period of five years. In 2020 returned to academia as a lecturer at Brunel University, National Structural Integrity Research Centre (NSIRC).