Fri, 01 July, 2022
Postgraduate studies are considered milestone achievements for professionals around the world. In support of this, including enhancing the engineering knowledge base and improving professionals’ chances of securing a place in the industrial world, the National Structural Integrity Research Centre (NSIRC), managed by founding partner TWI Ltd, has been at the forefront of developing industrially relevant Masters' and PhDs. Since 2012, NSIRC has collaborated with lead academic partner Brunel University London and more than 35 affiliated universities across the UK, Europe and Asia, with sponsorship from TWI’s fellow founding partners BP and Lloyd's Register Foundation.
Three team members of TWI Hellas, Antonis Porichis, Konstantinos Vasios and Antonis Dimopoulos, have joined NSIRC PhD programmes to gain further experience and more in-depth knowledge in their respective fields, through proprietary research and development activities. Additionally, Konstantinos and Antonis' work in the form of posters will also be part of this year's NSIRC Research & Innovation Conference 2022 on 21-22 July.
Antonis Porichis joined TWI Hellas as an Artificial Intelligence (AI) Specialist in April 2020. One year later, he started his PhD studies at the University of Essex, sponsored by the Lloyd's Register Foundation. Inspired by the Horizon 2020 project, SoftGrip, his research mission is to bring about end-to-end robotic skills acquisition for complex tasks. More precisely, by achieving skills transfer from humans to robots, automation will be able to fulfil tasks involving health and safety risks, thus allowing people to move onto higher, value-added activities.
Konstantinos Vasios joined TWI Hellas as a Principal Technology Developer in September 2020 and commenced his PhD journey in April 2021. His research is also part of the SoftGrip project that aims to dive into "Bridging the Simulation to Reality Gap in Robotics (Sim2Real)" at the University of Essex and is sponsored by Lloyd's Register Foundation. More specifically, Konstantinos' research focuses on the development of a meta-training framework in a Reinforcement Learning context that seamlessly blends the virtual and real, aiming for a faster, safer, more robust and cost-efficient deployment of smart agents to useful complex real-world scenarios.
Meanwhile, Antonis Dimopoulos, an Industrial Design Engineer, has been part of the TWI Hellas team since 2020. He joined NSIRC in October 2021 to start his PhD on "Multi-Objective Optimisation of Metal Support Structures for Laser Powder Bed Fusion Systems" with Brunel University London, funded by Lloyd’s Register Foundation. Antonis’ PhD research focuses on developing an innovative platform for effortless, reliable, and sustainable additive manufacturing (AM), capable of detecting the critical areas of an imported object where supports are needed, and proposing optimised support structures for each area. This will be achieved through Multi-Objective Optimisation of the various support parameters. His PhD work is expected to end in September 2024.
Overall, the National Structural Integrity Research Centre has been, and continues to be, an innovation accelerator that offers fertile ground for advanced training and research across the field of structural integrity. In doing so, it assists professionals to delve deeper into their craft while gaining work experience, and becoming valued members of the engineering and scientific communities for years to come.