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TRANSCEND: Advanced ultrasonic characterisation of slurry flows

PGR-P-316

Key facts

Type of research degree
PhD
Application deadline
Friday 31 July 2020
Project start date
Thursday 1 October 2020
Country eligibility
UK and EU
Funding
Funded
Source of funding
University of Leeds
Supervisors
Dr Timothy Hunter
Additional supervisors
Professor Bruce Hanson
Schools
School of Chemical and Process Engineering
<h2 class="heading hide-accessible">Summary</h2>

We present an opportunity for STEM graduates to be a part of an exciting new consortium in nuclear waste management and decommissioning, with a fully funded PhD in advanced ultrasonic characterisation of waste slurry flows, for remote process control of nuclear waste transfers.

<h2 class="heading hide-accessible">Full description</h2>

<p>This project is based within the School of Chemical and Process Engineering at the University of Leeds. The UK government is committed to nuclear energy having an important role in delivering secure, low-carbon and affordable energy, with their new build programme and life extension of the existing fleet. However, a significant barrier to this vision is the nuclear legacy from past reactor programmes.</p> <p>Recently, the EPSRC and UK industry have funded a brand new consortium in Transformative Science and Engineering for Nuclear Decommissioning (TRANSCEND) to solve these critical issues from past generations of nuclear power, providing a clean nuclear future. The consortium comprises key industry partners and leading academic researchers from 11 research intensive universities across the UK, to investigate various aspects of nuclear waste management, processing, decommissioning and site remediation.</p> <p>This PhD award will be fully integrated into the TRANSCEND programme. Specifically, we will seek in this project to develop transformative process analytical abilities, based on ultrasonic backscatter techniques, to fully characterise waste concentration and particle size non-intrusively online.</p> <p>The aim will be to integrate innovative acoustical modelling into software tools for real-time feedback of radioactive particle levels and their state of aggregation, for remote process control as they are transported as slurries. This work will include the use of novel machine learning techniques for acoustic data analysis and pattern matching, whereby the influence of a number of acoustic parameters on the backscatter signal can simultaneously be assessed using artificial neural networks (ANN), for example.</p> <p>It is noted that the successful applicant will be able to link directly to industry (e.g. by undertaking placements) and engage with other PhD students in the consortium, through annual symposiums and work package meetings.</p> <p>Further information regarding the consortium can be found here:&nbsp;&nbsp;<a href="https://transcendconsortium.org/">https://transcendconsortium.org/</a></p>

<h2 class="heading">How to apply</h2>

<p>Formal applications for research degree study should be made online through the&nbsp;<a href="https://eps.leeds.ac.uk/chemical-engineering-research-degrees/doc/apply">University&#39;s website</a>. Please state clearly in the research information section&nbsp;that the research degree you wish to be considered for is &ldquo;TRANSCEND: Advanced ultrasonic characterisation of slurry flows&rdquo; as well as&nbsp;<a href="https://engineering.leeds.ac.uk/staff/473/Dr_Timothy_Hunter">Dr Timothy Hunter</a>&nbsp;as your proposed supervisor.</p> <p>If English is not your first language, you must provide evidence that you meet the University&#39;s minimum English language requirements (below).</p> <p><em>We welcome applications from all suitably-qualified candidates, but UK black and minority ethnic (BME) researchers are currently under-represented in our Postgraduate Research community, and we would therefore particularly encourage applications from UK BME candidates. All scholarships will be awarded on the basis of merit.</em></p>

<h2 class="heading heading--sm">Entry requirements</h2>

Applicants to research degree programmes should normally have at least a first class or an upper second class British Bachelors Honours degree (or equivalent) in an appropriate discipline. The criteria for entry for some research degrees may be higher, for example, several faculties, also require a Masters degree. Applicants are advised to check with the relevant School prior to making an application. Applicants who are uncertain about the requirements for a particular research degree are advised to contact the School or Graduate School prior to making an application.

<h2 class="heading heading--sm">English language requirements</h2>

The minimum English language entry requirement for research postgraduate research study is an IELTS of 6.0 overall with at least 5.5 in each component (reading, writing, listening and speaking) or equivalent. The test must be dated within two years of the start date of the course in order to be valid.

<h2 class="heading">Funding on offer</h2>

<p>A full standard studentship consists of academic fees (&pound;4,500 in Session 2019/20), together with a maintenance grant (&pound;15,009&nbsp;in Session 2019/20) paid at standard Research Council rates</p>

<h2 class="heading">Contact details</h2>

<p>For further information please contact Doctoral College Admissions by email:&nbsp;<a href="mailto:phd@engineering.leeds.ac.uk">phd@engineering.leeds.ac.uk</a><a href="mailto:phd@engineering.leeds.ac.uk">,</a>&nbsp;or by telephone: +44 (0)113 343 5057.</p>


<h3 class="heading heading--sm">Linked funding opportunities</h3>