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EPSRC DTP Studentship - Cyclic Loading Effects of Rock Scour Protection for Offshore Wind Applications


Offshore wind (OW) plays an important role in the transition to low carbon energy supply, and has enormous potential for providing renewable energy across the globe, with projects starting to be developed in East Asia and the USA. The majority of foundations built for offshore wind consists of steel monopiles of up to 10 m in diameter. The use of rock protection to protect seabed mounted offshore foundations from scouring is growing. Loose rock protection is currently the primary method used to protect offshore foundations.

With the expansion of Offshore Wind projects to East Asia and the USA, there is an increasing concern as to how rock protection would behave during cyclic loading, and in particular seismic events, and its performance subsequent to that event. The same concern also applies to evaluating seismic effects on rockfill placed for submarine cable stabilisation.

The project will aim at addressing this research gap by assessing cyclic and seismic effects on scour protection performance. The work will involve experimental testing and design methodology. The student will gain experience in a broad range of areas including centrifuge testing and numerical methods adapted for the design of offshore wind foundations. The project will be developed in close collaboration with HR Wallingford (http://www.hrwallingford.com/), who will also financially contribute to the project.

EPSRC DTP studentships are fully-funded (fees and maintenance) for UK students or provide fees only for EU students from outside the UK, subject to eligibility requirements. Further details about eligibility can be found at: https://epsrc.ukri.org/skills/students/help/eligibility/.

Applicants should have (or expect to obtain by the start date) at least a good 2.1 degree in an Engineering, preferably Civil Engineering or Mechanical Engineering. A good knowledge or experience of mechanics, soil mechanics and foundation design is desirable (knowledge in laboratory testing and 3D FE modelling is also an advantage).

To apply for this studentship, please send your two page CV, a transcript and a cover letter to Dr. Christelle Abadie at cna24@cam.ac.uk, with subject "Scour Protection - PhD", to arrive no later than midnight on 31 January 2020. Queries about the post should be addressed to the same email address.

Please note that any offer of funding will be conditional on securing a place as a PhD student. Candidates will need to apply separately for admission through the University's Graduate Admissions application portal; this can be done before or after applying for this funding opportunity. Note that there is a £65 fee for PhD applications. The applicant portal can be accessed via: www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/egegpdpeg. The final deadline for PhD applications is 30 June 2020, although it is advisable to apply earlier than this.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.