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NSIRC hosts conference of industry-led PhD and MSc research

Wed, 17 July, 2019

Over 180 delegates, including representatives from companies such as BAE Systems, Boeing and BP, attended the National Structural Integrity Research Centre's (NSIRC) largest conference to date on 2 and 3 July. Also in attendance were NSIRC’s academic partners, which included some of the UK’s top universities, along with researchers from TWI and fellow students.

The conference saw over 60 NSIRC PhD students and 15 MSc students present their engineering research, with topics including advanced materials/coatings, novel joining methods, innovative monitoring technologies, data analytics, robotics, advancing non-destructive testing (NDT) methods and many more.

TWI's Director of Innovation and Skills and NSIRC Director, Tat-Hean Gan, said he was “proud of how the conference has grown over the past seven years, with more cultures and ethnicities being represented”. In an industry dominated by men, NSIRC can proudly say that 30% of the students are female, which is higher than the national average for STEM-related industries. Tat-Hean also expressed how the work of the NSIRC students “helps shed light on the state of the industry and how the next generation can apply their skills in the workplace”.

The conference attracted a number of highly skilled and experienced industry professionals, including the three keynote speakers; Elizabeth Donnelly, CEO of the Women’s Engineering Society, David Holmes, Manufacturing Director in BAE Systems Air Sector, and Alasdair Coates, CEO of the Engineering Council.

Alasdair, who covered topics such as advanced materials and coatings, novel joining methods and innovative monitoring technologies, noted that the conference is “an excellent opportunity to hear about different innovations and new concepts”. He added that the conference “chimes well with the Engineering Council’s desire to promote and enhance the engineering competence within an environment of innovation and ethics”. As well as giving presentations, the delegates and speakers offered professional advice to the students.

A series of awards were given following the conference:

Best MSc poster presentation

  • Winner: Marcelo Guirro
  • Runner up: Rahma Said

Best PhD poster presentation

  • Winner: Mason Rowthbottom
  • Runner up: Amna Asad

Best 2nd year oral presentation

  • Winner: Madie Allen
  • Runner up: Pedro Santos

Best 3rd year oral presentation

  • Winner: Alexandre Sabard
  • Runner up: Cui Er Seow

Industrial impact award

  • Winner: Dibakor Boruah
  • Runner up: Angelo La Rosa
  • Runner up: Gowtham Soundarapandian
  • Runner up: Andrew Sandeman

NSIRC is a state-of-the-art postgraduate engineering facility established and managed by structural integrity specialist TWI. NSIRC unites academia and industry, working  closely with lead academic partner Brunel University London and more than 20 other respected universities, as well as founder sponsors BP and the Lloyd's Register Foundation. The collaborating partners provide academic excellence to address the need for fundamental research, as well as high-quality, industry-relevant training for the next generation of structural integrity engineers.

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