Department of
Civil Engineering

Image of Angus Pettey

Angus Pettey

Assistant Professor Geotechnical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering



I attended Nottingham for my Undergraduate MEng in Civil Engineering from 2015-2019, taking on a final year project with Dr Charles Heron investigating the interface between the ground and structures.

Following this, I was offered the chance to study for my PhD within the Nottingham Center of Geomechanics/Department of Civil Engineering. The title of my thesis was "A micromechanical investigation into soil-structure interface behavior". In short, my research examined the interaction between sand and structural metals, by conducting experiments on single grains of sand, sheared against stainless steel plates. The outcome was a new understanding of how this soil-structure interface degrades over time, with continued cyclical shearing, due to abrasive wear.

My core research at present is in the use of Geotechnics in sustainable energy applications, such as Underground Pumped Hydraulic Storage, where a sealed vessel has water pumped into it when excess energy is available from the grid, and consequently pressurized by a weight of soil acting upon it. When the energy is required in return, a valve is opened, reliving the pressure as the water is passed though a turbine, ultimately smoothing the energy demand and supply curves, which is a key challenge facing the renewable energy roll out.

Teaching Summary

My core teaching is of Geotechnical Engineering, from experimental modeling to foundation design in the context of standardised Eurocodes.

In addition, I am interested in helping our students with the best practices in computing in Engineering, from processing data in python, to Finite Element Modelling soil bodies. These skills are becoming ever more crucial in the modern day toolkit of an Engineer.

Department of Civil Engineering

The University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

telephone: +44 (0) 115 95 14081