IIE Research Projects

Research Projects at the Institute for Infrastructure and Environment (IIE). You can search keywords within Project Titles.

We also have a number of Infrastructure and Environment PhD opportunities for postgraduate students looking to join the School.

Search keywords within Research Project titles
Project Title Principal Supervisorsort descending Project Summary
Modelling and measurement for oil and gas multi-phase flows - SPH-DEM fluid-particle simulation and validation

Dr Filipe Teixeira-Dias

The exploration and development of deeper wells with heavier and more viscous oils, requiring greater operating pressures and more fracture to fissures to release the oils. This results in significantly increased sand content that has the potential to bring about a fundamental shift in flow behaviour. This project aims to investigate the potential – and develop – a coupled smooth particle hydrodynamics (SPH) and discrete element method (DEM) model to simulate high-pressure multi-phase flows with support from an extensive experimental programme and industrial collaboration.

Particle Dynamics and suspension rheology in electrical discharge

Dr. Jin Sun

The Edinburgh part of the project focuses on multi-physics modelling of particle dynamics and suspension rheology in electrical discharge processes. This work is an integrated part of an EPSRC funded project to develop novel electrical discharge methods (EDM) for functional surface coating, collaborating with The University of Nottingham. This project aims to revolutionise the way industrial electrical discharge machining processes can be used. It will transform the process from a machining only technique to a method that is also capable of novel surface treatments at the same time. 

Dense suspension rheology through DEM simulations

Dr. Jin Sun

Mud, slurry, coffee, paints, cements, batteries and many other everyday materials have particles suspended in a liquid. We need to understand the flow behaviour to handle, and process such materials for traditional and innovative applications. Our research seeks to understand the common features of the flow behaviour of different materials using simple particle based simulations. In particular, we focus on dense suspensions where the particles occupy more than 50 % by volume of the solution.

Flow and sintering of non-spherical particles in additive manufacturing

Dr. Jin Sun

The Edinburgh part of the project focues on the multi-physics modelling of particle dynamics and sintering behaviour in selective laser sintering processes. This work is an integrated part of an EPSRC funded project to develop fundamental understanding of particle behavour in additive manufacturing, collaborating with the University of Exeter. This project proposes to investigate the way polymeric powders of different shapes and sizes flow, interact and sinter in the laser sintering process, through modelling and experimental validation. Laser sintering is part of the additive manufacturing technology, known for its benefits in industries where custom made products, lightweight and complex designs are required.


Modelling of dense suspensions rheology

Dr. Jin Sun

We examine the rheology of granular dense suspensions using computer simulations with discreste particles and develop constitutive models for flow of such suspensions.

Efficient DEM simulation of large systems of non-spherical particles

Dr. Kevin Hanley

To enlarge the scale of discrete element modelled particulate system from spherical to nonspherical; to increase the computational efficiency of simulating the nonspherical system; to provide more insights of particulate solid mechanics in engineering applications.

Community-Based Waste-Water Treatment in International Development

Dr Martin Crapper

A project, funded by PhD scholarships from the Islamic Development Bank and EPSRC (via the Doctoral Training Grants) is underway looking at the efficiency of meso-scale waste stabilization ponds to treat municipal waste water, with resource recovery from fish farming and selling sludge for fertilizer. The ultimate aim is to demonstrate systems that can be adpoted and run by communities, particularly in urban West Africa. The pilot project is based in Cotonou, Benin.

Health and Safety in Voluntary Sector Construction

Dr Martin Crapper

This research, conducted using sociological methods, investigates how these volunteer workers of railway sector construct safety in their volunteering environment.

Geobag Revetments for river bank reinforcement in Bangladesh

Dr Martin Crapper

This project aims at the production of guidelines for the safe design of revetments, which are often constructed manually by local farmers, with little engineering input.

Fire-fighting underventilated fires

Dr Ricky Carvel

Working with the fire brigades, and using a small-scale experimental apparatus to define appropriate fire-fighting responses to underventilated fires in sealed or partially sealed compartments. 


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