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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/L016257/1
Title: EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Machining Science
Principal Investigator: Marshall, Professor MBJ
Other Investigators:
Sims, Professor ND Turner, Dr MS
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Airbus Operations Limited Boeing Messier-Dowty Ltd
Nikken UK Rolls-Royce Plc (UK) Sandvik (Cormant/Steel)
Department: Mechanical Engineering
Organisation: University of Sheffield
Scheme: Centre for Doctoral Training
Starts: 01 October 2014 Ends: 30 September 2023 Value (£): 2,750,322
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Design & Testing Technology Manufacturing Machine & Plant
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Aerospace, Defence and Marine Manufacturing
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
23 Oct 2013 EPSRC CDT 2013 Interviews Panel F Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
The aim of the centre is to train research engineers with skills and expertise at the forefront of knowledge in machining science. Machining is at the heart of almost all manufacturing processes, ranging from the milling and turning processes used to create parts for the air-craft engines that power the planes we travel on, through to the grinding processes used to shape replacement hip-joints. As we demand more from engineered components, and move to materials such as composites or high strength alloys, their intrinsic strength or complexity as materials makes them harder to machine. This frequently means that machining processes are slower, require more manual interventions, and produce more out of tolerance parts: all these factors result in higher costs.

Research into machining science can make a tangible difference to the way in which modern engineering components are produced. For example, recent machining research by the AMRC will be used at Rolls-Royce's new 20,000 square metre factory in Tyne & Wear. This factory will employ over 400 people and make over 2000 engine components per year, for aircraft including the Boeing 786 Dreamliner and the Airbus A380 [1].

Our doctoral training centre will equip research engineers with the skills and expertise that places them at the forefront of machining science. Cohorts of doctoral researchers will each work on an industrially posed machining problem. They will aim to bridge the gap between industry and academia, as they will first research areas of appropriate machining science, before transferring this technology to their sponsor company. Research and training will take place within a collaborative environment, with research engineers based in the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) in Sheffield, where they will be mentored by academics working at the forefront of machining science, and will have access to some of the latest equipment available. Industrial participation is central to our training vision, where in addition to working on an industrially proposed problem, each research engineer will be co- funded and supervised by industry. We see this interaction as essential to ensure the research and training we provide is timely, and addresses the key challenges posed by UK industry.

[1] Rolls-Royce press release, Friday, 21 September 2012. "Rolls-Royce breaks ground for new facility in North East"
Key Findings
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Potential use in non-academic contexts
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Date Materialised
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Project URL:  
Further Information:  
Organisation Website: http://www.shef.ac.uk