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fully funded PhD positions at the School of Engineering and the Environment, University of Southampton, UK
1. Title: Developing high-performance numerical models for large-scale flood inundation problems
 
Flooding from extreme events is a matter of increasing concern. In particular, over the last decades floods have killed more people than any other natural hazard worldwide. In the UK it is estimated that 5M people are at risk from flooding. 
Our current ability to predict and mitigate flood risk is strongly reliant on the capacity to accurately model flood inundation and propagation over the land surface. However, the complexity of many flooding problems very often requires flow simulations that span far beyond the areas where the hazards occur, entailing model simulations covering extremely large areas. In addition, a variety of processes occurring during the flood propagation can only be accurately captured with (at least) 2D models operating at high resolution. These particular requirements result in extremely high computational costs, which impose a clear barrier for a range of applications aimed at understanding, predicting and mitigating large-scale flood problems.
This project will focus on the development of innovative numerical methods to model large-scale flooding problems at high-performance with physics-based hydraulic models (i.e. based on the shallow-water equations). Particular focus will be given to efficient use of fine resolution topography at all stages of model development, from the first steps of model conceptualization and formalization to the final implementation. Attention will also be given to techniques of parallel computing using HPC resources available at the University of Southampton (http://cmg.soton.ac.uk/iridis). 
We are looking for highly motivated applicants with an MSc or MEng degree in Civil or Environmental Engineering or related fields (Mechanical Engineering, Physics, Applied Mathematics). Previous experience in flood risk assessment, modelling and programming (C/C++, Matlab, Fortran, Python), are highly desirable.
If you wish to discuss any details of the project informally, please contact Dr. Gustavo A. M. de Almeida, Water and Environmental Engineering research group, Email: g.dealmeida@soton.ac.uk.
This EngD project will be funded through the Industry Doctoral Training Centre (IDTC) http://www.southampton.ac.uk/idtc.  The studentship comprises support from both EPRSC http://www.epsrc.ac.uk and an industrial sponsor. 
To be eligible students need to have UK status or be a European Union (EU) national who has been 'ordinarily resident' in the UK for three years prior to the commencement of studies. 
Outstanding international applicants, currently based in the UK AND able to attend an interview at the University of Southampton, who have the equivalent of a very good first class UK degree (typically with 75% or above overall) may be eligible to compete for an international doctoral scholarship (IDS) on the EngD scheme.  If you wish to apply for the IDS, please indicate this on your application form and ensure a personal statement, full degree transcripts and two references are included.

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2. Title: Understanding the interactions between large wood debris, river bridges and the risk of flood in urban areas
 
The project will focus on the effect of partial blockage of river bridges by large wood debris (logs, branches and rootstock). Logs and drifts that accumulate around bridge piers are known to reduce the available flow area and cause significant rise of upstream water levels. This considerably increases the risk of flooding, either by aggravating the damage of large flood events or by causing flooding from less intense rainfall episodes. This is particularly problematic in urban areas, where the number of river bridges is typically high and the value of assets and human exposure to floods is highest. The alteration of the flow field imposed by the blockage can also enhance scour around pier foundations, potentially leading to structural failures.
The objective of the project is to develop a deep understanding of river obstruction at bridges, its effects on the risk of floods, as well as its influence on the scour around pier foundations. The post will involve designing and undertaking and exciting and innovative experimental programme using the hydraulics flumes and state-of-the-art flow measurement instrumentation available at our hydraulics labs. This experimental work will be complemented by and combined with the application of computational hydraulic tools currently developed within the group.
We are looking for highly motivated applicants with a MSc or MEng degree in Civil or Environmental Engineering or related fields (Mechanical Engineering, Physics, Applied Mathematics). Previous experience in flood risk assessment, modeling and programming (matlab, Fortran, C/C++), are highly desirable. Training in different aspects of experimental and computational river hydraulics and river engineering will be provided. The successful candidate will join the Water and Environmental Engineering Group within the Civil, Maritime and Environmental Engineering and Science unit.
If you wish to discuss any details of the project informally, please contact Dr. Gustavo A. M. de Almeida, Water and Environmental Engineering research group, Email: g.dealmeida@soton.ac.uk, Tel: +44 (023) 80598796.

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