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Research Fellow, Mechanical Engineering

Southampton, United Kingdom
£36,024 to £42,978 Per annum
Closing date
6 Mar 2024

Mechanical Engineering

Location: Highfield Campus
Salary: £36,024 to £42,978 Per annum
Full Time Fixed Term until 02/12/2024
Closing Date: Wednesday 06 March 2024
Interview Date: To be confirmed
Reference: 2626824DA

Next generation oil free compressors present considerable challenges in using water for bearing lubrication, shapes and materials which will resist corrosion but have sufficient strength to allow reliable operation. The project will be collaboration with Prof Kovacevic of the Centre for Compressor Technology, City, University of London and nCATS and is sponsored by the leading compressor manufacturer Mayekawa in Japan. The PDRA would work with PhDs students at Soton and at City and there will be opportunities for working at the Centre for Compressor Technology and to host the PhD student from City within nCATS.

The role 

The PDRA would lead research and develop new understanding of water lubricated bearings for water injected screw compressors to be used in variety of applications including mechanical vapour recompression, steam compression and heat pumps. The research will probe if EHL lubrication is possible within water lubricated tribocontacts and what bearing type most suitable for rotor machinery. Various aspects including coatings, lubricant additives, bearing surface texturing, tribological/corrosion material performance, modelling of lubricant films, bearing design and so on will be considered initially so the PDRA will have every opportunity to select a focused project plan that suits them. The PDRA would develop instrumented screening tests on existing tribometers to study water lubrication of area, line and point contacts under slide and slide/roll conditions that are representative of the service environment and loadings. There will be regular meetings with Dr Kazuhiro Hattor from Mayekawa as well opportunities to attend leading international conferences on compressors, wear of materials (USA) and lubrication/tribology (Japan/USA).

About you

  • PhD or equivalent professional qualifications and experience in materials and/or tribology
  • Able to organise own research activities to deadline and quality standards
  • Able to develop understanding of complex problems and apply in-depth knowledge to address them
  • Able to develop original techniques/methods
  • Able to supervise work of junior research staff/PhD students
  • Able to contribute to Academic Unit management and administrative processes
  • Work effectively in a team, understanding the strengths and weaknesses of others to help teamwork development
  • Able to write up research results for publication in leading peer-viewed journals and present at conferences

What we can offer you

  • a world-class research environment
  • additional funding for research expenses
  • access to mentoring, career development and networking across the University (Ie the Institutes) and beyond (ie UK Tribology)

As a founding signatory of the Athena SWAN charter, and holder of a silver award, we’re committed to improving equality.

We aim to create an environment where everyone can thrive and are proactive in fostering a culture of inclusion, respect and equality of opportunity. We believe that we can only truly meet our objectives if we are reflective of society, so we are passionate about creating a working environment in which you are free to bring your whole self to work.

As well as additional benefits that will make your life easier, such as a generous holiday allowance and additional university closure days. We will help you find a good work-life balance with flexible, or even part-time, working hours. We will support your long-term future too, with access to the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS)*, subsidised health and fitness facilities and a range of discounts.

*Applications for Research Fellow positions will be considered from candidates who are working towards or nearing completion of a relevant PhD qualification. The title of Research Fellow will be applied upon successful completion of the PhD. Prior to the qualification being awarded the title of Senior Research Assistant will be given.

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