PhD Studentship Opportunity: Non-destructive Evaluation and Structural Health Monitoring of Composite – University of Surrey

University of Surrey, UK

Closing Date
20 May 2022

More info

With the growing interest to use laminar composite materials in aerospace, automotive and wind energy industries, much attention is devoted to

the development of rapid, accurate and cost-effective built-in systems for the detection and evaluation of structural defects. Structural Health Monitoring (SHM) systems based on acoustic/ultrasonic wave propagation have been developed to provide an early warning of the damage occurrence, resulting into safer structures and operative costs saving. SHM ultrasonic systems have a common basis with non-destructive evaluation (NDE) techniques. Indeed, several standard NDE methods can be converted in SHM techniques by integrating a network of ultrasonic transducers on the monitored structure. However, there is still a big gap between a laboratory based set-up for SHM methods and certified industrially used NDE inspection systems. This project will address the required advances to close this gap and develop in-situ SHM systems for the detection and imaging of structural damage composite materials. Ultrasonic methodologies and newly designed phononic crystal structures will be used to characterise different damage scenarios and identify impact events and their magnitude. The PhD studentship will focus on a topic within this broad scope, according to the skills and interests of the candidate.

The student will contribute to the ongoing research at the Department of Mechanical Engineering Sciences at the University of Surrey under the supervisor of Dr Francesco Ciampa, and have access to a highly equipped SHM and NDE lab dedicated to research.

This project is open to UK and international students starting in July 2022.

Entry requirements

Candidates should have (or expect to obtain) a first class honours degree (or equivalent) in Aerospace, Electrical/Electronics, Civil/Structural Engineering, Material Science or Physics. Strong background in acoustic/ultrasonic wave propagation, numerical analysis (Abaqus, ANSYS, LS-Dyna, Comsol, etc…) and excellent mathematical and experimental skills are required. Signal processing and programming experience is an advantage (e.g., MATLAB, Fortran, Python, LabView).

For EU and international candidates (non-native English speaker) there is a mandatory English requirement certified by the IELTS exam with a minimum overall band score of 6.5 and no less than 6.0 in any element.

How to apply

Applications should be submitted via the Engineering Materials PhD programme page on the “Apply” tab.

Please state clearly the studentship project that you would like to apply for and the name of your intended supervisor.


3.5 years of stipend and fees, £1,000 pa for training, conferences and consumables. 

Application enquiries

For application enquiries, please contact Dr Francesco Ciampa (

Posted on 8th April 2022 in Job Opportunities in Acoustics