Mechanical Testing of Aerospace Alloys for Hydrogen Powered Gas Turbines at Swansea University

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Funding providers: EPSRC and Rolls Royce

Subject areas: Materials Science & Engineering; Additive Manufacturing

Project start date: 1 July 2024 (Enrolment open from mid-June)

Project description: 

Although sustainable aviation fuels are recognised as the more mature technology, Rolls-Royce are investigating the feasibility of hydrogen-burning gas turbine engines, due to the large potential gains in carbon reduction that may be possible in the medium term.

The aim of the Swansea University contribution to the project is to generate mechanical property data under hydrogen environments to support development of gas turbines capable of running on gaseous and liquid hydrogen. This will require contribution to two specific areas from Swansea University, namely: 

  1. Understanding of material behaviour at cryogenic temperatures to support a pathway towards LH2 gas turbines.
  2. Analysis of the effect of gaseous hydrogen environments on materials behaviour.

Work to understand cryogenic behaviour will begin initially through the use of liquid nitrogen, to provide an indication of materials properties. Testing under gaseous hydrogen will explore in situ testing against the possible effectiveness of pre-charging. Using both methods it is anticipated that the effect of temperature will be considered while testing under atmospheric pressure. The experience gained through these approaches will then further inform potential future developments and materials characterisation methods. 

Eligibility

Candidates must hold an Upper Second Class (2.1) honours degree  in Engineering or similar relevant science discipline. If you are eligible to apply for the scholarship (i.e. a student who is eligible to pay the UK rate of tuition fees) but do not hold a UK degree, you can check our comparison entry requirements. Please note that you may need to provide evidence of your English Language proficiency.

Due to funding restrictions, this scholarship is open to applicants eligible to pay tuition fees at the UK rate only, as defined by UKCISA regulations.

Additional Funding Information

This scholarship covers the full cost of UK tuition fees and an annual stipend at UKRI rate (currently £18,622 for 2023/24) with an annual £5000 top-up for four years.

Additional research expenses will also be available.

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