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EPSRC FIBE2 CDT PhD studentship with Aveva: rapid prototyping industrial installation

This is a four-year (1+3 MRes/PhD) studentship funded through the Cambridge EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Future Infrastructure and Built Environment: Resilience in a Changing World (FIBE2 CDT). The FIBE2 CDT aims to develop the next generation of infrastructure professionals who can create, shape and deliver the national vision for UK infrastructure.

The project is funded in collaboration with AVEVA, a Global Leader in Industrial Software that deliver solutions and expertise to optimize engineering, operations and performance supporting the evolution of the industries.

Problem or Challenge: Initial design decisions have the highest impact on the sustainability, operability and profitability through the lifecycle of new industrial assets. Conversely, changes in design are the easiest and most economical to correct at this initial design phase. Higher-level optimisation, as pioneered using the PANDA tool, looking at the overall layout, choice of technologies and the trade-offs inherent of early, crucial decisions made under high uncertainty is an open question. For example, a plant may perform a number of operations, which may have synergies. Depending on the broad layout chosen, these synergies can become less amenable to exploitation. Considerations of safety and efficiency may be at odds. Future evolutions can be blocked by apparently unimportant decisions taken very early on. Experienced designers, even if aware of all these problems do not typically have the time or means to explore many possible options. This leads to re-use of previous, workable designs which are likely sub-optimal.

MRes/PhD Project Objectives: The practical objective of the PhD is to allow engineers to rapidly produce basic model alternatives of infrastructure design suitable for decision-making under high uncertainty. These models should be able to explore the range of technical, environmental and economic trade-offs. The model will allow the creation of a computer-aided design programme capable of displaying the possible options.

For general enquiries, please email For project-specific enquiries please e-mail Dr Cyrille Dunant []

Applicants should have (or expect to obtain by the start date) at least a good 2.1 degree in a Bachelors or Masters in any engineering, sciences or relevant discipline.

The FIBE2 CDT studentships are fully-funded (fees and maintenance) for eligible UK students. EU and international students will be considered for partial funding (home-level fees and maintenance) from the CDT as part of their application.

Further details about eligibility and funding are at:

To apply for this studentship, candidates must apply via the following link: with the project and supervisor named on the form. There is a £70 fee for applications.

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