Studentships leaflet

We are advertising studentships at Southampton, available for an immediate start. We are keen to hear from people who have or expect to secure a good, relevant first degree. Follow these links for more information.

Mechanical properties of re-used ballast (at Southampton, now under offer)

Integrating train and trackside monitoring (at Birmingham)

Investigating the long-term response of geogrid-reinforced ballast under realistic loading conditions (at Southampton) (fully funded for UK or potentially for EU student: an overseas student would have to be largely self-funded. Follow link for details)

Investigating the geomechanics of railway ballast reinforced with micro-geogrids (at Southampton) (fully funded for UK or potentially for EU student: an overseas student would have to be largely self-funded. Follow link for details)

Research students

Toshan Rampat

Toshan Rampat

Project: novel forms of railway track (funded by EPSRC and the University of Southampton)

Toshan’s research involves the coupling of finite element models and discrete element models in order to simulate the behaviour of high-speed trains on ballasted tracks. His work is linked primarily to Research Challenge 1 and is based at Southampton.

After graduating from the University of Nottingham with a Bachelor in Civil Engineering in 2015, Toshan spent a year as a Geotechnical research and teaching assistant on the project 'From Conventional to High-Speed', which involved the investigation of various types of reinforcement schemes using 3D-geocomposite materials in ballasted track for rapid transit applications.

Ali Shahbaz Khan

Ali Shahbaz Khan

Project: Correlating ballast stiffness/settlement and sub-ballast behaviour with trackbed performance and maintenance needs (funded by EPSRC and the University of Southampton)

Ali's research aims to link the measureable and quantifiable parameters of elastic stiffness and the development of permanent settlement to these from the often seemingly random deviation of the track from the desired line and level. His work is linked primarily to Research Challenge 1 and is based at Southampton.

Ali graduated with BEng in Mechanical Engineering (2015) and MSc in Chemical and Petroleum Engineering (2016) from the University of Bradford.

Pedro Jorge

Pedro Jorge

Project: Modelling and enhancing track support through railway switches & crossings and transitions

A railway turnout, colloquially known as a set of points, is a mechanical device to guide the trains from one rail track to another. Its main component is the switch and it is often associated with a crossing, which allows a diverging track to cross a parallel track. Because of the moving parts, discontinuities and dynamic loads imposed by traffic, turnouts have a shorter life and require more maintenance than plain line.

Pedro's project is to analyse the dynamic behaviour of a complete turnout and study possible new solutions that emerge from the T2F project. His work is linked primarily to Research Challenge 2 and is based at Huddersfield.

Pedro was awarded his Master's degree from the University of Porto in 2013. He wrote his Master's dissertation on train-bridge interaction. In the same year he started as a researcher on a Portuguese project studying the behaviour of masonry arch bridges before taking up his present post in September 2016.

Giacomo Ognibene

Giacomo Ognibene

Project: Ground support and modelling through railway switches & crossings and transitions (funded by EPSRC, Network Rail and the University of Southampton)

Among the most important components of the railway system are switches and crossings (S&C). Although they represent less than 1% of the entire route length of railways in the UK, they take up to 20% of expenditure on track maintenance and in the worst case, may have a working life of only 3 years.
Giacomo's project aims to develop innovative S&C designs that provide for increased axle loads and speeds with a reduced need for maintenance. This will be achieved by developing new understandings of the high complex interactions between switch and crossing geometry. Giacomo's work is linked primarily to Research Challenge 2 and is based at Southampton.

Giacomo was awarded Bachelor's and Master's degrees from the University of Bologna. He wrote his Master's dissertation on numerical modelling of railway track on transition zones as an Erasmus student at the University of Southampton, supervised by members of the T2F academic team.

Boniface Hima

Boniface Hima

Project: Track noise mitigation (funded by EPSRC and Network Rail)

Boni's project aims to study and optimise railpad and rail fastener systems for low noise and low vibration transmission.

Noise and vibration are generated by forces at the wheel/rail interface and radiated through vibration of the wheel and the track. Because track noise is dominant in a modern system, strategies to reduce the noise of the track promise significant reductions of overall noise if successful. A number of existing techniques are available. The challenge is to introduce noise mitigation without increasing the cost or complexity of the track significantly. Boni's work is linked primarily to Research Challenge 3 and is based at Southampton.

Boni served in the Royal Engineer corps of the British Army before obtaining Bachelor's and Master's degrees in sound engineering and applied acoustics from Southampton Solent University.

Sorawit Limthongkul (starting summer 2018)

Sorawit Limthongkul (starting summer 2018)

Project: Noise and vibration mitigation at Switches and Crossings

Sorawit's project will extend existing computer models of the dynamics of vehicles running through switches and crossings. The results will then be used together with acoustic models to determine noise generation, and with advanced models of vibration to determine the vibration transmitted through the ground. The project will consider the effects of changes in switch geometry on the noise and vibration generated in different situations. Sorawit's work is linked primarily to Research Challenge 3.

Georgios Rempelos

Georgios Rempelos

Project: A Whole Life Carbon Model for Railway Track System Interventions (funded by Network Rail and EPSRC)

Georgios' project aims to develop a carbon emissions model for railway track systems, covering the whole life of infrastructure. The model will be capable of modelling the impacts of a wide range of track system interventions, including the full range of engineering solutions developed during the Track to the Future research programme. The model will have a high degree of spatial transferability, which will allow it to be used to generate results for any part of the UK rail network. Georgios' work integrates the results from all three Research Challenges.