EPSRC logo

Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/G036772/1
Title: Advanced Composites Centre for Innovation & Science (ACCIS) Doctoral Training Centre
Principal Investigator: Wisnom, Professor M
Other Investigators:
Farrow, Dr I Bond, Professor IP Weaver, Professor PM
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Department: Aerospace Engineering
Organisation: University of Bristol
Scheme: Centre for Doctoral Training
Starts: 01 October 2009 Ends: 31 March 2018 Value (£): 7,133,150
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Materials Characterisation Materials Processing
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Aerospace, Defence and Marine
Related Grants:
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
We will establish ACCIS as an internationally leading Doctoral Training Centre (DTC) as part of the specified DTC area: Materials Science & Engineering. This DTC will raise the number of highly qualified materials scientists/engineers and address two major issues. Firstly, insufficient numbers of skilled personnel in Composites technology currently available to UK industry (EPSRC Materials Intl. Review 2008) and secondly, training of people capable of bridging the interface between engineering & science. A further objective is to develop and produce the next generation of Composites, noting that within ACCIS Composites are defined as synergistic combinations of materials which may exhibit multifunctional attributes. Composites offer novel, fundamental solutions for commercial success and environmental sustainability in many engineering endeavours, with enormous future potential.UK Composites is at a critical juncture. For example, materials used in building large passenger aircraft are changing from metallic to Composite, requiring a technological transformation if design and manufacturing are to remain in the UK and ACARE2020 targets (e.g. 50% reduction in CO2 & perceived noise) are to be met. A further example of industrial need is the expected ten-fold increase in wind farms to ensure security of the UK's energy supply. In this case, demand for Composites may even exceed that from the aerospace industry. Overall, industrial use of Composites is rising exponentially. Simultaneously, universities are not currently producing the graduates required to implement technology and advance underlying science, a situation exacerbated by contraction of UK Materials Science departments. Without the necessary skill base and expertise to drive exciting projects and generate intellectual property, there is an overwhelming risk that both existing and nascent industries, and their supply chains, could fail or move offshore. This proposal provides the opportunity to address this challenge, creating an internationally leading DTC encompassing the materials science & engineering of Composites. The centre will contribute significantly to increasing capacity in this strategically important area and firmly establish UK Advanced Composites on the global map.Our industrial letters of support highlight the urgent need to meet current and anticipated future shortages of highly skilled people for cross-sectorial Composites technologies, spanning aerospace, biomaterials, civil infrastructure and energy generation. To meet this need and provide a new generation of Composites innovation, we have a strategy to seek an equal share of industrially supported PhD projects to meet shorter-term industrial needs, coupled with exciting longer-term, blue-skies studies in multifunctional Composites development. Combining this approach with a comprehensive taught progamme, we will deliver highly-skilled Composites practitioners to ensure a flourishing future for this crucial UK sector.The technical aspirations of this DTC are:-to stimulate adventurous research, across length scales and at unexplored interfaces between established Composites research and chemistry, physics, biology and medicine by placing PhDs at the frontiers of and interfaces between these disciplines;-to develop the design methodology and innovative application of Next Generation Composite Materials.The DTC will provide the means to create and deliver a portfolio of PG degrees. A 4-yr programme, including 1-yr taught course, is proposed. This programme is suitable for a range of student backgrounds, exploiting the 1st year as a familiarisation period before their PhD. The modular Programme will also be adapted for part-time students, particularly from industry, to fulfil their training needs. Novel aspects include the proposed researcher exchange programme, annual conference, and comprehensive personal and transferable skills development
Key Findings
This information can now be found on Gateway to Research (GtR) http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk
Potential use in non-academic contexts
This information can now be found on Gateway to Research (GtR) http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk
Description This information can now be found on Gateway to Research (GtR) http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk
Date Materialised
Sectors submitted by the Researcher
This information can now be found on Gateway to Research (GtR) http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk
Project URL:  
Further Information:  
Organisation Website: http://www.bris.ac.uk