Open Call – Post Doctoral Research Associate (Durham)

Open Call – Post Doctoral Research Associate (Durham)

May 19, 2017 Posted by:   webmaster No Comments

Reference Number: 006208
Post: Post Doctoral Research Associate
Department: School of Engineering & Computing Sciences
Location: Durham City
Contract Type: Full Time & Fixed Term until 30 April 2020
Grade: Grade 7 (£32,004 – £33,943)
Opening Date: 11 May 2017
Closing Date: 12 June 2017 (Midday)
THE POST

Outstanding applicants are sought for the post of Research Associate, in the School of Engineering & Computing Sciences at Durham University, who will carry out high-quality research leading to the development of numerical methods for the analysis of foundations of wind turbines in unsaturated expansive soils. The post is funded by a major EPSRC Global Challenge Research Fund grant (EP/P029434/1) entitled “Performance-based design of foundations of wind turbines in Africa (WindAfrica)”. The projectis in collaboration with Cambridge University, University of Pretoria (South Africa), University of Dar es Salaam (Tanzania), University of Khartoum (Sudan) and several industrial partners.
The focus of the appointment will be in the development of a coupled Eulerian-Lagrangian finite element approach for unsaturated soils to study the response of piled foundations of wind turbines in African expansive soils. The developed approach will form the basis of parametric studies which will be carried out by the post holder to explore the effect of a number of factors influencing the deformation and the bearing capacity of wind turbine foundations in unsaturated soil. These factors include: (a) the geometry of foundations, (b) the effect of the contact between the soil and the pile (c) the effect of seasonal shrinking/swelling cycles and (d) the effect of fluctuation of the groundwater table.
Close collaboration with the other project partners will be essential for validating the numerical modelling and for formulating a set of design guidelines for wind turbine foundations on unsaturated expansive soils. The numerical modelling will complement field testing, centrifuge modelling and laboratory testing carried out by the other project partners.
Responsibilities
(1) Perform high-quality research in the bespoke research project under the guidance of the supervisory team (Dr Osman, Prof Augarde and Dr Coombs).
(2) Meet the members of the supervisory team on a regular basis.
(3) Participate in the activities of the WindAfrica project as specified in the Grant Agreement.
(4) Write up the results of the research activity and present research papers and publications at meetings and conferences, as advised by the supervisors.
(5) Widen personal knowledge in the research area and undertake complementary training.
(6) Use initiative and creativity to deal with problems that may affect the achievement of research objectives and deadlines.
(7) Plan and manage own research activity, research resources in collaboration with others and contribute to the planning of research projects.
(8) Liaise with research colleagues and make internal and external contacts to develop knowledge and understanding to form relationships for future research collaboration.
Person Specification
Essential:
(1) Having obtained or be close to obtaining a PhD in geotechnical engineering, computational mechanics or a related subject
(2) Basic knowledge of geomechanics
(3) Experience in scientific programming (for example, in Fortran, C/C++ or Python)
(4) Experience in implementation of numerical methods in computer code
(5) A track record of authoring high-quality academic publications
Desirable:
(6) Experience in numerical modelling in geotechnical engineering or closely related fields
(7) Experience in developing finite element methods or similar numerical methods
(8) Experience in unsaturated soil mechanics
(9) Experience in working and communicating with practising engineers
Applications are particularly welcome from women and black and minority ethnic candidates, who are under-represented in academic posts in the University.