PhD Studentship: Jet Engine Sound Field Measurement Using Optical Fibre

United Kingdom
Nov 30, 2016
May 01, 2017
Organization Type
University and College
Full Time
PhD Studentship: Jet Engine Sound Field Measurement Using Optical Fibre

Optoelectronics Research Centre

Location: Highfield Campus

Closing Date:  Monday 01 May 2017

Reference: 813116EH

Jet Engine Sound Field Measurement Using Optical Fibre

Supervisor: Dr Trevor P. Newson         

Co-supervisors: Dr Ali Masoudi and Professor Jeremy Astley

Jet engine technology continues to grow increasingly sophisticated. However, issues regarding acoustic noise radiation from even the most advanced engines persist and adversely impact both ground maintenance personnel and surrounding communities. To gain a better understanding of the origin of the noise, there has been extensive research to develop the required innovative measurement and analysis methods to characterize the jet noise and identify the regions from which the sound field is being generated. However, existing techniques are expensive, bulky, and time consuming to install.

The aim of this project is to develop a novel alternative sound field measurement technique using optical fibre. Such a sensor relies on a single strand of optical fibre to measure the sound pressure level (SPL) every 5cm along the sensing fibre, effectively acting as a microphone array with one microphone every 5cm. As a result, a hundred channel microphone array, its data acquisition system, and extensive network of cables and mounts can be simply replaced by a single strand of optical fibre and an interrogation unit.

A fully funded PhD place on this project is available for UK applicants. Students from overseas who have secured external funding are also welcome to apply. Students with a background in electronics and an interest in optics and optical fibre technology would be a good fit to this exciting project area. Key aspects in this project will involve experimental work, computational modelling, signal processing, and data-analysis. A visit to meet us is recommended.  Phone / Skype interviews are also possible if preferred.

Please contact Dr Trevor Newson ( or Dr Ali Masoudi ( for further details and visit our group page: ( . 

 The PhD programme

The ORC PhD comprises a solid education for a research career. The structured first year involves attending our training programme running in parallel with working on your research project. This provides a smooth transition from your degree course towards the more open-ended research that takes place in the following years under the guidance of your project supervisors. We expect our students to present their work at international conferences and to contribute to papers for leading academic journals as their research progresses. Students will emerge from the PhD with a broad knowledge of optoelectronics with specialist skills at the forefront of future distributed optical fibre sensing research. They will benefit from the many opportunities to interact with the wider community of PhD students across the Southampton campus through academic, sporting and cultural events.

The ORC is one of the leading research institutes in Europe and is world leading in the development of distributed optical fibre sensors and lasers for sensing application systems. Its researchers invented and demonstrated the first distributed optical fibre sensor capable of measuring strain and temperature simultaneously using Brillouin scattering. This invention led to successful research collaborations with Schlumberger (the world's leading provider of technology to the oil and gas industry), the National Grid and BP.

The distributed optical fibre sensing group is currently collaborating with the Institute of Sound and Vibration Research (ISVR) Southampton University and Network Rail plc to develop a distributed vibration sensor for track and train monitoring. The proposed PhD research project will involve collaboration with the Aerospace research group within ISVR.

Obtaining a PhD at the ORC has enabled our past graduates to make very successful careers in academia, in national scientific laboratories, and as scientists or business leaders in industry. Our research papers, patents, spin-off companies and these successful alumni, taken together, place the ORC amongst the top institutes worldwide.

Key facts

Entry requirements: first or upper second-class degree or equivalent

Closing date:applications should be received no later than 31 March for standard admissions, but later applications may be considered depending on the funds remaining in place.  Early application is recommended.

Duration: up to four years (full time) and seven years (part time)

Funding: Full scholarships are available for UK students with an enhanced stipend of £18,000 per annum for 3.5 years. International and EU students are encouraged to seek full or partial funding from other sources (e.g. national government scholarships, commonwealth scholarships, self-funding etc.).

Assessment: annual reports and viva voce determine progression in PhD; viva voce and thesis examination for the final PhD award

Start date: typically at the end of September, but self-funded students could start any time after the 1stJanuary 2017


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