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PhD Position at University of Warwick

University of Warwick is seeking a highly motivated PhD students. This position is open only for European students. Applications will be accepted at any time until the position is filled.

There is a growing demand for the development of low density steels to reduce the weight of car bodies to meet the fuel efficiency and to reduce CO2 emissions. Fe-Al based Advanced High Strength Steels (AHSS) are being considered. Fe-Al alloys typically consist of aluminium in the range of 3-12% with low amounts of carbon. The presence of aluminium in steel significantly reduces the density of the steel. The concept looks simple, but there are lot of challenging issues to be understood, for example containing reactivity in the liquid state, solidification behaviour, cracking during casting and hot rolling, high temperature oxidation etc.. Since the amount of aluminium is high, the steel will have a tendency to form oxides and nitrides etc which would affect the casting and solidification conditions. The evolution of the oxide precipitates in steels, interms of size and shape is an important issue, since oxide size is known to be an important factor in mechanical properties of the final steel. The size and shape of the oxides as well as agglomeration of these oxides depends on the wetting conditions with melt which in turn depends on the physical properties of the melt. It was also observed that different morphologies of oxides and nitrides were formed at different oxygen and nitrogen levels. The formation of oxides and inclusions alter the melt physical properties such as density, viscosity and surface tension of molten steel. Understanding these physical properties is essential for improving the physical, mechanical and performance properties of these steel.

The project aims to:
- Measure the physical properties of Fe-Al alloys at different aluminium concentrations and temperatures above the liquidus temperatures in terrestrial conditions.
- Same set of alloys will be used to determine the density and viscosity in micro gravity conditions under controlled oxygen environments.
- Characterisation of alloy microstructure using SEM, TEM and synchrotron based (SAXS, Tomography) techniques.
- Modelling of casting and solidification processing using thermo-physical properties data obtained from microgravity experiments.
Benefits
Due to the government regulations, funding is limited to only UK citizens/EU applicants.
Application Requirements
The applicant should have a Bachelors or Masters level degree in Metallurgical Engineering / Materials Science / Physics / Chemistry. Knowledge of physical metallurgy, casting and solidification is desirable.
How to apply?
- Initial enquires to Dr Prakash Srirangam (p.srirangam@warwick.ac.uk).
- To apply please complete our online enquiry form
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