Professor Conchur O Bradaigh

Honorary Professor

Engineering Discipline: 

  • Mechanical Engineering

Research Institute: 

  • Materials and Processes

Research Theme: 

  • Materials Design, Processing and Characterisation
Prof Conchúr Ó Brádaigh
Prof Conchúr Ó Brádaigh, Head of School and Chair of Materials Engineering

Academic Qualifications: 

1985, BE, Mechanical Engineering, National University of Ireland, Galway
1987, MEngSc, Mechanical Engineering, National University of Ireland, Galway 
1991, PhD, Mechanical Engineering, University of Delaware, USA

Professional Qualifications and Memberships: 

Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers
Chartered Engineer, Member of Engineers Ireland
Member of American Society of Mechanical Engineers
Member of Society for Advancement of Materials and Process Engineering (SAMPE)

Research Interests: 

My research interests focus on lightweight fibre-reinforced polymer composites, used in transport, energy generation and infrastructure. I have raised over £15.5 million in research funding at university and start-up companies, with support from industry, National Governments and European sources.

Composite materials reinforced with carbon fibres, glass fibres and other specialty fibres such as basalt, are an important economic contributor to aerospace, automotive, rail and marine transport, as well as being widely used in renewable energy generation technologies such as wind energy, and marine renewables.

My particular research interests are in the development of novel manufacturing processes for economic production of composite structures, based on both thermoset and thermoplastic polymers, and the mechanical properties of these novel materials.

Specific research topics that I am currently involved in:

  • Development of novel, powder-epoxy based composites for renewable energy applications
  • Design and characterisation of novel composites for wind and tidal energy applications
  • Heat transfer and consolidation flows in thick-section epoxy laminates
  • Effect of seawater ingress on the fatigue properties of fibre reinforced composites
  • Design and development of cost-effective composite tidal turbine blades
  • Efficient fatigue testing of large composite structures
  • Novel out-of-autoclave manufacturing techniques for aerospace composites
  • Liquid moulding of automotive thermoplastic composites using in-situ polymerised materials
  • Cryogenic performance and permeability of advanced thermoplastic composites
  • Design of space cryogenic fuel tanks from thermoplastic composites
  • Rotational moulding of polymer liners for cost-effective space fuel tanks
  • Automated tape-placement of advanced thermoplastic composites
  • Lightweight materials for wave energy convertor

Further Information: 

Inaugural Sir Bernard Crossland Medal for Engineering Innovation, Engineers Ireland, 2008
Institution of Mechanical Engineers Donald Julius Groen Prize, 2012
Údarás na Gaeltachta / TG4 Gaeltacht Business Award 2007 - Innovation Category
Enterprise Ireland Commercialisation Award for Successful Licensing from NUI Galway ATRP Project, 2007
Fulbright Scholars Programme Award at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, United States, 1995
Engineers Ireland Smith Testimonial, 1994