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PhD Studentship in Developing New High Performance Alloys for Gas Turbine Applications

Applications are invited for a PhD studentship developing new alloys for high temperature applications in gas turbines.  The studentship is fully funded for a UK student, will run for up to four years and can start from Jan 2018. It will be run in close collaboration with Rolls-Royce plc and will be located in the Department of Materials Science and Metallurgy at the University of Cambridge.


The University of Cambridge has been working as part of a multi-university research initiative to deliver new materials technologies that will enable new designs of more efficient gas turbines for civil aviation.  As part of this initiative, we have developed a new type of high temperature superalloy that is reinforced by multiple intermetallic precipitates. These alloys have been shown to have exceptional mechanical properties, far exceeding those of commercially available alloys, but they now require further development in order to realise their full potential and produce a commercially viable alloy.


This project will seek to obtain a detailed understanding of the mechanistic origins of the exceptional mechanical properties of these new alloys.  The effect of alloying with various elements will also be investigated and this will enable the design of refined alloys suitable for industrial utilisation. This research will require the preparation of alloys by arc melting, mechanical testing, scanning and transmission electron microscopy with EDX, X-ray diffraction, differential scanning calorimetry and themogravimetric analysis. Opportunities will also be sought to gain insight into these alloys using diffraction at international synchrotron X-ray and neutron facilities.


Applicants should have (or expect to be awarded) a good honours degree in a relevant science subject (Physics, Chemistry, Materials Science) and should meet the EPSRC criteria for UK/EU residency and liability for 'home rate' fees.


Application forms and the Graduate Studies Prospectus are available from the University website and copies of these documents are available via Further information on the application process is available from Dr Rosie Ward (


Informal enquiries may be made to Dr Howard Stone by email to


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