Advanced Manufacturing Technology Research Group

PhD Students 

Emmanuel Adefuye

Emmanuel Adefuye

PhD Tittle: PhD Manufacturing Engineering

Supervisors: Prof.Richard Leach and Dr. Adam Thompson

Research Summary
This research study is resolving the hard problem facing the cause of defects on the surface of the part produced and see how the defects found on the surface parts can be minimised through using post-processing approach methods. Based on this, the part to use will be produced with additive manufacturing metal-PBF processes and design a block which l will use for the mechanical tests on fatigue and porosity by using the hydraulic machine to carry out tests of stress, strain, and strain rate to know the defects found on the surface of the parts produced. Meanwhile, I will be producing six parts that I will use to perform the tests on fatigue to know the number of defects failures on each part tested with the machine. More so, each of these parts will also be correlated with each other. This will be ensured through the repeated measurements of the different parts geometries to know the tensile strength testing. Furthermore, I will carry out tests on porosity with different sets of parts six numbers using X-ray images to scan the part in order to find the defects present on the surface of the parts. During this process, any defects that I found will be minimised by using heat treatment processing during the experiments in the laboratory. 
 
 
 
Weiming Ba

Weiming Ba

PhD title: Modelling and Control of continuum robots for operations in confined environments

Supervisors: Dr. Xin Dong and  Prof. Dragos Axinte

Research Summary
This project is in relation to the technical needs of slender continuum robots (length/diameter >> 20) for operations in confined environments, e.g.in-situ repair and maintenance of gas turbine engines. This will include kinematics modelling, dynamics modelling of slender continuum robots in varying loading conditions as well as the prototyping and validation of the results, which have not been studied in-depth. The project can make a step change in the field of continuum robots, pushing the technology closer to be ready for the applications in industry.
 
 
 

Felix Biertümpfel

PhD title: Space Launcher Validation and Verification using IQCs

Supervisors:  Dr. Harald Pfifer and  Prof. Atanas Popov

Research Summary
The objective of this PhD is to provide new tools and methods for the uncertainty modeling, control system design verification based non-linear analysis of space launchers. Furthermore, novel control design approaches for their recovery shall be developed. Guaranteed analysis results shall be based on the use of Integral Quadratic Constraints (IQC). Moreover, the same IQC analysis theorems shall be utilized for controller synthesis via re-parameterization of the IQC analysis problem. Both elements will be directly applied and demonstrated on an experimental re-usable lander flight control system using extensive flight test campaigns.
 
 
 
Artem Bogatyrev

Artem Bogatyrev

PhD title: Implementation of thermal barrier coating modification techniques  

Supervisors: Dr Zhirong Liao and Prof Dragos A. Axinte

Research Summary 
In the modern airspace industry efficiency of turbine engines strongly depends on the inlet gas temperature. This imposes high requirements on the properties of the engine component materials, forcing them to work on the edge of their capabilities. One way to support the constant turbine technology development is to design new thermal barrier coating (TBC) materials, another way is to enhance the performance of existing TBCs. My research is focused on modifications of TBC, including mechanical and microstructural ones. This involves a deep understanding of the thermal and mechanical behaviour of the TBC system under working conditions as well as metallurgical transformations, associated with applied alterations. Establishing mechanisms of modification influence on TBC performance will enable achieving desired system properties in a controlled way.
 
 
 

Monica Castro Palacios

PhD title: Adaptation of electrical discharge machining for in-engine aerospace applications

Supervisors: Prof. Adam Clare, Dr. James Murray, Dr. Alistair Speidel

Research Summary 
This project investigates the machining of ceramic and non-conductive materials through Electrical Discharge Machining (EDM). The main drive behind this research is the currently high demand in micro-machining parts inside industries such as automotive and aerospace, hence, the need of investigating and expanding the EDM capabilities to non-conductive aerospace materials.On a parallel side, it is also being investigated the potential use of viscous dielectrics for EDM. With this, its being carried out experimental procedure on different types of viscous dielectrics and how they contribute with the improvement of the process.
 
 
 
Jung-Che Chang

Jung-Che Chang

PhD title: Design, fabrication, and control of a walking/ crawling robot with novel actuator and material for inspection in extreme environments

Supervisors: Dr. Xin DongProf. Dragos AxinteDr. Abdelkhalick Mohammad and    Dr. Michele Degan

Research Summary 
In-situ inspection and repairing are necessary tasks to the complicated machines/facilities due to their non-transferability or both high time and financial cost from the disassembling-assembling process. Based on advanced electromagnetic/electromechanics actuators, and novel mechanisms, this project aims to provide a robotic system with a potential for in-situ inspection in extreme environments. The academic valued solution is also expected to make its functionality and price more friendly to the industry with a disposable requirement.
 
 
 
Siwen Chen

Siwen Chen 

PhD title: High speed in-process defect detection in metal additive manufacturing

Supervisors:  Dr. Simon Lawes and Prof. Richard Leach 

Research Summary
This project aims to advance the precision of laser powder bed fusion additive manufacturing through improved in-process surface texture detection with the support of Marie-Curie Innovation Training Network. A number of methods exist for in-situ inspection of AM processes, e.g. thermal imaging, high speed imaging with cameras and co-axial melt pool imaging; however, no system to date has been able to balance the requirements of fast inspection with total inspection. For this reason, a novel vision system will be produced, which allows detection of different types of defects or significant features such as porosity, cracks, etc. via visual identification in a way that is portable and self-calibrating for easy installation in-line in the manufacturing process.
 
 
 
Alan Chi

Alan Chi

PhD title: Use of an image-capture system to measure the applied hide of waterborne coatings: a visual psychophysics approach

Supervisors: Prof. Richard Leach and Dr. Lewis Newton

Research Summary

Hiding corresponds to the visual property of paint which is associated with the ability to occlude the colour or colour differences of the substrate. In the paint and coating industry, the measurement of hiding is traditionally performed in a standardised procedure with controlled lighting, using a drawdown bar to specifically apply a constant thickness of paint, and measuring the contrast ratio of this applied paint. Such methods rely on the unrealistic assumption that paint will be applied in a smooth, uniform manner outside of the laboratory. Applying paint generally results in uneven film thickness and surface texture, which greatly impacts hiding power. This project seeks to develop a new method to measure hiding of applied coatings, without the requirements for controlled lighting and that can allow for paint films of non-uniform thickness – resulting in a more accurate and realistic measure of hiding power. 

The development of this new method for measuring applied hiding will rely on the use of image capture. Images of applied waterborne paints will be analysed to obtain a metric for hiding power. This project will approach this from a visual perception perspective, rather than measuring the physical properties of the paint. The hiding metric will take into account different visual properties of the paint (as captured in the image) such as: colour, gloss, wet/dry state, illumination and surface texture. Psychophysical experiments will be conducted to determine which aspects of the images are relevant and meaningful to the visual perception of paint hide. This project will lead to an image-capture system that can accurately determine and measure the hiding power of applied waterborne paints in a realistic setting, using visual psychophysical data and images, without the need for directly measuring the physical properties of the paint itself. 

 
 
 
Timothy Cooper

Timothy Cooper

PhD title: Advanced coating methodologies for additive manufacture

Supervisors: Prof. Adam Clare, Prof David Grant, Dr James Murray, Dr Jesum Alves Fernandes

Research Summary
I am working in conjunction with Oerlikon Balzers to investigate coating methodologies for additive manufacturing, using Physical and Chemical Vapour Deposition (PVD, CVD) and surface modification with Electron Beams. This will improve understanding of the surface modification of AM parts before and after existing process steps. The focus will be on improving performance (thermal, mechanical, corrosion) and manufacturing processes for the tooling sector.
 
 
 

Subba Darukumalli

Subba Darukumalli

PhD title: Development of a Small High-speed 3D measurement Sensor Prototype for Focus Variation System

Supervisors:  Prof. Richard Leach

Research Summary

The significant usage of the micro components in many industries, such as automotive, aerospace and electronic gadgets makes the metrology as a bottle-neck technology in manufacturing. Coordinate metrology is the most common way to measure the geometry or form of components. With the developments in visualization (capturing and data processing) and optical technology, the optical metrology is getting more popular for its dense databases and high precision measurements from last couple of decades. So far many optical meteorology sensors have been developed and available in the current market. However,they are hard to integrate in-line with production machinery.

The main aim of the project is to develop a hybrid-metrology sensor prototype for industrial inline production measurement systems, including a vision system for fast defect detection and a focus variation system for 3D topography measurement. In practice, the final product would be an industrial inline production metrology sensor prototype, which is tested with multiple parameters such as measurement speed, system performance, resolution and accuracy.

This project is a part of the Precision Additive Metal Manufacturing (PAM^2) Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network (ITN) funded by the European Union under the Horizon 2020 Programme. PAM^2 has close collaboration with industry and academia to address the quality assurance and the various process stages of AM, with the aim of implementing good precision engineering practice. 

 
 
 
Paul Dryburgh

Paul Dryburgh

PhD title: Adapting Selective Laser Melting Platforms for In-Situ Non-Destructive Evaluation

Supervisors:  Prof. Adam Clare, Dr. Steve Sharples and Mr Matthias Hirsch

Research Summary
Additive manufacturing (AM) is the process of creating a component by building layer upon layer, to create complex structures gives SLM potential for use in high value industries such as aerospace, and medical devices. However, lack of robust inspection methods has limited the uptake of AM components for safety critical applications. This project focus on developing the spatially Resolved Acoustic Spectroscopy (SRAS) technique for SLM, to provide a robust on-line inspection technique which produces quantifiable results in an industrial context. Providing a reliable NDE technique for SLM components will help to improve industry confidence in the technology. 
 
 
 
Xi Du

Xi Du  

PhD title: Effect of powder feedstock on processing of alloys by laser powder bed fusion (LPBF) 

Supervisors: Prof. Adam Clare, Prof. Chris Tuck, Dr. James Murray, Dr. Marco Simonelli 

Research Summary 
The main aims of this project are to study the effects of powder feedstock on the properties of final LPBF parts. There are some aspects that need to be considered for powder feedstock, with particle size distribution and chemical composition being the most important factors as they can influence almost all other powder properties and play a crucial role in final parts properties. Therefore, studies will be carried out to get an understanding of how particle size distribution and chemical composition affecting the powder feedstock performance and final parts performance with the full consideration of processing parameters. Finally, perfect powder feedstock for LPBF technique is expected.  
 
 
 
Sarah

Sarah Everton 

PhD title: Ensuring the quality of components produced by metal additive manufacturing using novel non-destructive testing techniques

Supervisors:  Prof. Phill Dickens and Prof. Chris Tuck

Research Summary
The project aims to develop a robust approach to AM of high integrity metal parts using novel Non-Destructive Testing techniques. To date, a full review of literature in the field has been carried out and initial experiments undertaken, in order to assess the suitability of laser ultrasonic testing (LUT) for in-situ inspection of AM. Planned work includes modelling of LUT and validation of results using x-ray computed tomography (XCT) and destructive methods.
 
 
 
Yihua Fang

Yihua Fang

PhD title: Multi-sensors integrated continuum robot controlSummary of research

Supervisors: Dr Xin DONGProf. Dragos Axinte and Dr Abd Mohammad

Research Summary
This research is related to sensor fusion in continuum robot control, aims to develop a more feasible and reliable control system including hardware and software for the current robot system.
 
 
 
Sébastien Faron

Sébastien Faron

PhD title: Selective Laser Melting of Magnesium

Supervisors: Prof. Adam Clare, Prof. Christopher Tuck and Prof. Ian Ashcroft

Research Summary
Nowadays, Additive Manufacturing and especially Selective Laser Melting of metals are taking lots of interest from both industry and academia. Although several metals can be easily process, some others are more challenging to process. Magnesium and its alloys are part of the second category. As the melting temperature of magnesium is really close to its boiling temperature regarding how much energy bring the laser, it is intricate to maintain the melt pool between these two temperatures.My project will be to optimize the Selective Laser Melting of Magnesium with the help of modeling via Computanional Fluid Dynamics.
 
 
 
Samuel Ferris

Samuel Ferris

PhD title: Additive Powder Metrology: The Effect of the Condition of the Powder Layer in Power Bed Fusion Additive Manufacturing on the Quality of the Finished Product.

Supervisors: Prof. Richard Leach and Dr Ian Maskery

Research Summary

Powder bed fusion is a relatively new and highly promising technology in additive manufacturing. Widespread uptake of PBF is limited by a lack of confidence in the produced parts. One way to increase confidence is to introduce new standards and methods of control for improving part quality.

This product focuses on the condition of the powder layer prior to processing. A large part of this is focused on powder spreading behaviour, as this influences the geometry and density of the powder layer. The powder characteristics are also relevant, as they also affect the relevant qualities of the powder bed. 

This project concerns the measurement of relevant powder bed characteristics, utilising both in-situ and post-process measurements. This data will also be analysed using machine learning methods. The objective is to develop these measurement and analysis procedures for control of the PBF process.

 
 
 
Cristina Ferro Barbosa

Cristina Ferro Barbosa

PhD title: Designing, Modelling and Biofabrication of Scaffolds for Osteochondral Defect Repair

Supervisors: Dr Joel SegalDr Laura Ruiz  and Prof Felicity Rose

Research Summary
Osteochondral (OC) defect refers to damage in the articular cartilage and in the underlying subchondral bone, the field of tissue engineering provides a prospective alternative strategy using biomaterials and cells in a scaffold to repair the defect. Current research explores a multiphasic graded OC scaffold that mimics the bone cartilage interface with the specific graded mechanical properties of these two tissues. The mechanical properties of the in-vivo OC tissue are used to design the geometry and Finite Element Analysis modelling is used to compare the design and materials properties used in the biofabrication.
 
 
 
Gonzalo Garcia Luna

Gonzalo Garcia Luna 

PhD title: Machining of advanced composite materials for aerospace applications

Supervisors:  Prof. Dragos Axinte and  Mr Paul Butler-Smith

Research Summary
A new generation of advanced composite materials have been identified as a key material system for improving aircraft performance. They offer low density, high strength and stiffness, and superior environmental resistance. However, due to its heterogeneous nature as a result of different reinforcement orientations, these material are considered to be difficult to machine. The final purpose of the project is to understand and predict the behaviour of these materials under machining conditions.
 
 
 
Thomas Girerd

Thomas Girerd 

PhD title: AM Capabilities for in-situ repair

Superviors:  Prof. Adam Clare and Dr.Andres Gameros Madrigal

Research Summary 

This PhD is the first one to look at implementing a miniaturised 3D printing technique for in-situ aero-engine repair. After a pre-selection of various metallic deposition techniques, six methods have been reviewed and analysed. By developing comparison tools, we proposed another approach to understand the weaknesses and strengths of different 3D printing techniques. Looking at a way to repair safely and efficiently aero-engines, we have decided to develop another method of depositing metallic materials.

 
 
 
Carlos A. Gómez

Carolos Gomez

PhD title: Coherence scanning interferometry for difficult-to-manufacture applications

Supervisors:  Dr. Simon Lawes and  Prof. Richard Leach

Research Summary

Coherence scanning interferometry (CSI) is a powerful, highly accurate non-contacting metrology method, which uses a broadband light source and combines vertical scanning with optical interferometry techniques, to achieve a three-dimensional surface measurement with sub-nanometre precision. Nevertheless, CSI has shown limited detectability when dealing with surfaces featuring high slopes, due to the limited numerical aperture of its objective optics.

Additive manufacturing (AM) is an example of a challenging application for CSI, wherein components produced by AM can have very rough surface texture with local slopes well beyond the NA limit. Diffuse, dissimilar, translucent, or porous surfaces also represent a challenge. These properties can significantly suppress the strength of any interferometric signals. However, most recent advances in CSI further expand the range of measurement parameters, offering significantly improved sensitivity to overcome these limitations.

This project consists of two main objectives:

  1. Development of guidelines to upgrade topographic measurement of CSI for difficult-to-manufacture applications.
  2. Improvement of the correlation between CSI and other surface metrology methods.

Publications:

Carlos Gomez, Rong Su, Adam Thompson, Jack DiSciacca, Simon Lawes, Richard Leach, “Optimization of surface measurement for metal additive manufacturing using coherence scanning interferometry,” Opt. Eng. 56(11), 111714 (2017), doi: 10.1117/1.OE.56.11.111714

 
 
 
Jan-Hendrik Groth

Jan-Hendrik Groth

PhD title: New design and evaluation strategies for rapid implementation of 3D printing technologies in gas turbines

Supervisors: Prof. Adam Clare, Mirco Magnini, Prof Christopher Tuck

Research Summary
My research will focus on new designs for heat transfer applications. The new designs will be manufactured by additive manufacturing and their performance evaluated by experiments. These new designs will be used for case studies in gas turbines. 
 
 
 
Alex Gullane

Alex Gullane

PhD title: Additive Manufacture for critical application

Supervisors: Prof. Adam Clare, Prof. Chris Hyde and Dr James Murray

Research Summary
This project seeks to exploit the design freedoms of the Laser Powder Bed Fusion process for industrial alloys.  A method by which to simultaneously increase throughput and achieve desired local material properties is explored, thus providing a more economic process while enabling control of component failure.
 
 
 
Hamid Hadian

Hamid Hadian

PhD title: Complex form measurement using optical technology

Supervisors: Dr. Samanta Piano and Prof. Richard Leach

Research Summary
Optical instruments for measuring surface topography are increasingly being used as coordinate measuring machines (CMMs) to allow them to measure complex three-dimensional components. This project will investigate the use of one such instrument based on the principle of point-autofocusing, but with a 5-axis motion system. The fundamental limitations of the techniques acting as a CMM will be determined and quantified. Specification standards that are applied in the CMM and form measurement fields (e.g. ISO 10360, 12181) will be applied, where possible, to multi-axis point-autofocussing and, where not possible, new procedures will be developed. Methods for calculating uncertainties with the instrument will be investigated, including the principle of a virtual CMM applying a Monte Carlo technique. A number of case study components will be measured to showcase the methods developed, with a focus on gear metrology. This project aims to develop measurement and calibration methodologies for the form measurement of complex engineering components.
 
 
 
Andrea La Monaca

Andrea la Monaca

PhD title: Mechanisms of microstructural surface deformation and grain refinement in machining of advanced Ni-base superalloys

Supervisors: Prof Dragos A. Axinte and Dr Zhirong Liao

Research Summary
The development of advanced materials for high-temperature environments is essential to improve the efficiency and cut emissions in key engineering fields as nuclear or aerospace. For their outstanding mechanical properties, machining of these materials combines high process complexity with the necessity of generating surfaces with excellent microstructural integrity. In this context, my PhD research focuses on the mechanisms of microstructural deformation in machining of Ni-base superalloys. This involves investigating the physics of the cutting process, with the development of new testing methods to link macro-scale cutting phenomena with the small-scale microstructural condition generated in the machined subsurfaces.
 
 
 
Ian Marsh

Ian Marsh             

PhD title: High Integrity Additive Manufacturing Using Recycled Material Feedstock

Supervisors: Prof. Adam Clare, Dr. Chris Hyde, Prof. Ian Ashcroft 

Research Summary
A joint collaboration between Liberty Powder Metals and University of Nottingham motivated by a business case that suggest the powder will see a 10 fold increase in value once it has been recycled. The project is based on reducing the use of raw materials by using recycled powder. The basis of my research will focus on the mechanical properties of additively manufactured Nickel based super alloys using recycled powder. Ensuring parts have the required mechanical integrity for industrial applications after being additively manufactured such as aerospace and automotive. 
 
 
 
Wenxuan Peng

Wenxuan Peng 

PhD title: Investigation of mechanics and applications of Double-Sided Incremental Forming (DSIF)

Supervisors:  Dr Hengan Ou and Prof Adib Becker

Research Summary

Incremental sheet forming (ISF) is a reasonably new process for manufacturing of small batch and customised non-axisymmetric sheet parts that can be used in aerospace, automotive industries and for medical applications.The double side incremental sheet forming (DSIF) is an emerging variant of the ISF process with potential benefits in improved formability, accuracy and production efficiency as compared to the conventional ISF technique. This project aims at the investigation of deformation and failure mechanisms of DSIF in order to overcome the current obstacle in the development of ISF by conducting experimental testing and finite element simulations. Research will also be carried out in developing new DSIF tool path strategies and assessing the feasibility of using DSIF as a viable route for manufacturing cranial plates for medical applications. 

 
 
 
Athanasios Pappas

Athanasios Pappas

PhD title: Calibration of optical surface measuring instruments using metrological characteristics

Supervisors: Dr Lewis Newton, Prof Richard Leach and Adam Haynes

Research Summary
The continuous advances in the sectors of advanced manufacturing and precision engineering have resulted in a demand for structures with highly complex surface specifications. However, the nature of those surfaces (high slope angles, complex geometries, diffusely reflecting surfaces) makes the use of measuring instruments for the purpose of uncertainty estimation a difficult task. This fact is evident by looking at the common issues encountered by researchers, including outliers, missing points and other unexpected topographic features.    Introduced in ISO 25178-600 (2019) surface fidelity is a metrological characteristic which encapsulates all of the aforementioned aspects that relate to the interaction of an instrument and the surface (or profile) being measured.  A number of calibration methods can be found where a material artefact of similar geometry to that of the measurand is employed to quantify surface fidelity.  However, a number of issues become apparent as a single artefact cannot hold all possible surface structures or the fact that the data from a sample topography cannot be extrapolated onto a different one. Consequently, the aim of this project is the development of a calibration framework for determining topographic fidelity and how it can be applied in the estimation of uncertainty budgets allowing for the prediction of the performance of an instrument for a number of different applications.   
 
 
 
Javi-recortada2

Javier Picavea

PhD title: Design of freeform conformable fixtures with selective passive reacting capabilities.

Supervisors:  Prof Dragos Axinte and  Mr Andres Gameros 

Research Summary
The aim of my research is to investigate innovative design solutions of fixtures for conformability and passive dynamic capabilities. Fixtures must be able to locate the parts that are going to be processed in an exact and repeatable position and hold them against manufacturing loads that might be applied to them. The fixtures of this PhD are focused on holding freeform geometries, known like that due to the complexity of their shapes for improved performance, and the loss in stiffness for weight lightening, aspects that complicate the positioning and clamping, and make the part more susceptible to vibration.
 
 
 
Zhenyuan Qin

Zhenyuan Qin

PhD title: Investigation of thermal behaviour in incremental sheet forming 

Supervisors: Dr. Hengan Ou and Prof. Atanas Popov 

Research Summary
Incremental sheet forming (ISF), also known as Single Point Incremental Forming (SPIF), has drawn considerable attention due to its high flexibility and low set-up cost. Substantial advances have been made in fundamental framework and practical applicability over last three decades. As an emerging ISF technology, the heat-assisted ISF can dramatically improve the formability of hard-to-form materials with poor ductility and high strength at room temperature. However, the thermal mechanism behind heat-assisted ISF is still less understood, especially for friction stir assisted incremental forming.  The aim of this project is to develop the thermal model that can describe the thermal behaviour in ISF under different process conditions. 
 
 
 
Hamood Ur Rehman

Hamood Ur Rehman

PhD title: Development of Data Models and Adaptation Strategies for Self-Configured Production Systems

SupervisorsProfessor Dr. Svetan Ratchev, Dr. Jack Chaplin and Leszek Zarzycki

Research Summary
The project deals with intelligent product design and development for implementation in manufacturing environments. Here the intelligent product is part of a production system (equipment) used to make any product in a manufacturing setting. Much of the previous research presents models of overall facility but does not factor in the capability and design of individual components or products, which constitute the facility overall. An integral direction for the research is towards development of such production systems, their feasibility in ‘plug and produce’ systems focused on providing online and inline integrated testing and decision-making during production.The research is directed towards MALT (Micro Application Leak Testing) Use-Case development. MALT provides dry air pressure decay leak testing capability suitable for applications such as lab-on-chip, diagnostic cartridges, medical vials etc. An iterative approach will be used during the project to make the already existing product smarter, adaptable and effective. Plug and play concept will be realized for integrating the developed solution in existing manufacturing lines. In this regard, the selected approach is to develop a Multi-Agent System for Testing, Controlling and Self-configuration guided by Machine Learning Pipelines.This work is being carried out under DiManD Innovative Training Network (ITN) project funded by the European Union through the Marie Sktodowska-Curie Innovative Training Networks (H2020-MSCA-ITN-2018).
 
 
 
Afaf Remani

Afaf Remani

PhD title: In-situ monitoring of metal powder bed fusion fordefect identification using a multi-sensingmeasurement system

Supervisors:  Prof Richard Leach and Dr Adam Thompson

Research summary

Afaf Remani

PhD title: In-situ monitoring of metal powder bed fusion fordefect identification using a multi-sensingmeasurement system

Supervisors:  Prof Richard Leach and Dr Adam Thompson

 

Research summary
The occurrence of in-process defects in metal laser powder bed fusion, is a major barrier to itswide adoption in high-value industrial applications. However, while defects are generallyundesirable, not all of them are necessarily detrimental to the functionality of the part. We callthis the ‘Hard Problem’ and propose addressing it through a series of in-process and postprocesstechniques in the framework of a multi-sensing measurement approach. The aim ofthis work is to establish meaningful correlations between in-process phenomena and defectsand develop methods of discriminating harmful defects from neutral faults during themanufacturing process of the part.
 
 
 
 
 
William Reynolds

William Joe Reynolds 

PhD title: Metal powder through life performance in additive manufacturing 

Supervisors:  Prof. Adam Clare and Prof Ian Ashcroft

Research Summary
Recent improvements to SLM hardware have greatly improved capability and process control. Increasingly laser/electron beam processes are being used to manufacture and repair high value assets for the aerospace and biomedical industries. A critical limiting factor here is the performance of the feedstock material - the metal powder. The reuse of this through production cycles has been shown to have some effect on part performance in typical service conditions. This project aims to overcome some of these issues through the use of material characterisation to inform powder management and performance through life.
 
 
 
Irati Sanchez

Irati Sanchez

PhD title: Study of the removal of aerospace materials applying Water Jet technology 

Supervisors:  Prof Dragos Axinte and Dr Zhirong Liao

Research Summary

The aim of my research is to analyse the interaction of the water jet and the aerospace materials in order to study the mechanism of their removal process. The water jet technology takes advantage of the kinematic energy of the water at high pressure for the material removal process.

Machining of the aerospace materials with waterjet will bring the advantage of high material removal rate and low surface damage, which could contribute to the safety and long lasting of the aeroengines in a more efficient and economical way.

 
 
 

salome sanchez

Salomé Sanchez

PhD title: Modelling Creep behaviour of LPBF alloy 718

Supervisors:  Dr Chris HydeProf Adam Clare and Prof Ian Ashcroft

Reseach Summary
My PhD aims at modelling creep and creep crack growth for Additively Manufactured nickel alloy 718.  I will be performing creep and creep crack growth experiments, looking into the effect of orientation and scan strategies. Using the experimental data, a model will be derived, based on previously researched material models adapted for Additive Manufacturing materials.
 
 
 
Teguh Santoso

Teguh Santoso

PhD title: Integrated micro-manufacturing metrology

Supervisors:  Prof Richard Leach and Wahyudin P. Sya

Research Summary
Advances in production technologies demand fast and accurate in-line metrology so that part inspection does not become a bottle-neck in the manufacturing process chain. However, many manufacturing industries still do not implement in-line metrology due to lack of available methods that can be conveniently adapted to their production systems. In-line metrology measures appropriate parameters immediately after the associated process step is finished. Therefore, modern production technology efficiency can be improved both in traditional and smart factories. 

Many manufacturing companies are starting to adopt in-line metrology as a tool to address issues with the “fourth industrial revolution” (Industry 4.0); the platform for the factory of tomorrow. The project aims to develop a fast and accurate non-contact optical in-line metrology module for form and surface texture. Many aspects of precision design will be applied in the development of the module. In addition, calibration methods and a performance verification infrastructure will be developed to ensure the optical instrument’s traceability. Furthermore, the module will utilise smartphone-like electronics borrowed from the mobile phone industry that also incorporate wireless LAN features to ease integration and communication.
 
 
 
Amrozia

Amrozia Shaheen 

PhD title: Optical form measurement of complex rough surfaces to improve the precision of additive manufactured parts

Supervisors:  Prof Richard Leach and  Mr Petros Stavroulakis

Research Summary

The aim of this project is to revisit existing state-of-the-art optical 3D form measurement methodologies such as photogrammetry, laser scanning and fringe projection (shown in Figure 1). For the most appropriate methodology, research will be carried out to improve the measurement pipeline starting from the optics, all the way to the algorithms used, with the goal of enabling the fast, easy and efficient assessment of metal additive manufactured (AM) objects after they have been manufactured. More specifically, the project will focus on the development of an appropriate mathematical model for the effect of the optical design to the quality of the 3D points measured, along with the study of the optical interaction of existing equipment with metal AM surfaces. This will lead to the creation of a setup with an optimal optical transfer function for the measurement of complex AM objects. With regards to optimising and accelerating existing 3D measurement algorithms, the project will leverage the use of a priori knowledge and the CAD model of the object in an information-rich metrology framework, which is a core competency of the Manufacturing Metrology Team (MMT) at the University of Nottingham.

The practical demonstration and characterization of the proposed theoretical model is needed to address practical concerns, such as systematic errors and environmental noise issues, which would affect the optical and image processing techniques. The ultimate goal of MMT is to use the accurate optical measurement results to provide quality control feedback to the AM manufacturing process and, as a result, improve its accuracy, speed and precision.

Precision Additive Metal Manufacturing (PAM2) is a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network (ITN) funded by the European Union under the Horizon 2020 Programme. PAM2 has close collaboration with industry and academia to address the quality assurance and the various process stages of AM, with the aim of implementing good precision engineering practice. 

 
 
 
Hongshen Shi

Hongshen Shi

PhD title: Haptic control and navigation of continuum robot

Supervisors:  Prof Dragos. Axinte, Dr Abd Mohammad, Matteo Russo and Dr Xin Dong

Research Summary
Continuum robots have been developed aim to execute some tasks which is difficult for traditional robot, such as in-situ repairing of aero-engine. For these robot systems which expected teleoperated by human, haptic feedback is a vital impact to improve their efficiency and safety. My PhD project aim to develop the haptic interface for the continuum robot, providing haptic feedback to reflect robot or task information.  The work objectives also include teleoperating the movement of continuum robot with haptic device and employing sensors to obtain robot information in constrained environment.
 
 
 
Peter Smith

Peter Smith 

PhD title: Additive Manufacturing of Functional Materials in Microgravity

Supervisors:  Prof. Adam Clare and Dr Joel Segal

Research Summary 

In-space manufacturing is needed to enable future space exploration. It is critical for on demand production of spare components, reducing payload requirements, and introducing parts for unforeseen circumstances. These parts must withstand the hostile environments of space or the surfaces of celestial bodies.

My research focusses on developing additive manufacturing processes to produce metal parts in microgravity, which can function in these difficult environments. In doing so, a better understanding of the materials properties produced through these processes will be acquired.

 
 
 
Mateusz Sosin

Mateusz Sosin

PhD title: Development of an interferometric absolute multi-distance and multi-sensor measurement system for use in harsh accelerator environment

Supervisors:   Prof. Richard Leach and Dr. Rong Su

Research Summary

Frequency scanning interferometry, based on interference beat frequency analysis allow for absolute distance measurements to multiple targets. Detectability of the reflected light from variety of surfaces inside the interferometer beat frequency spectrum makes possible the development of new family of robust sensors as well as sensor networks. The measured distances can be dependent on different physical quantities, allowing for integration of a variety of sensors within a single interferometer channel.

In frame of the project the impact of multi-reflection phenomena for different material surfaces, surface properties and intra-surfaces arrangement on the FSI measured spectrum will be investigated. As an outcome of the research, a proposal for multi-reflection based sensors and sensors network configurations is expected. 

 
 
 
Matthew

Matthew Thomas

PhD title: High slope surface measurement based on an information-rich approach using coherence scanning interferometry  

Supervisors:  Prof. Richard Leach and  Dr. Rong Su

Research Summary

Coherence scanning interferometry (CSI) is one of the most accurate optical metrology techniques that determines a sample’s surface topography by localisation of low-coherence interference fringes during a scan along the optical axis of the system. Current commercial CSI systems are able to measure surface topography with sub-nanometre precision. However, CSI has some limitations; one being its limited detectability of high surface slopes due to the limited numerical aperture of its objective optics.

This project involves the development of a computational method for high-precision surface metrology from first principles, based on an information-rich approach using CSI. The aim is to extend CSI to be capable of handling high slope surfaces, by fully considering the 3D linear systems theory for CSI and the signal response of the system in the non-linear regime (e.g. multiple reflection and scattering signals). This project will include optical modelling, including analytical and numerical solutions of Maxwell’s equations. The novelty of the project lies with the combination of instrument modelling with a priori manufacturing data to significantly increase the bandwidth of the measurement, allowing for the measurement of high slope surfaces. 

 
 
 
Emil Tochev

Emil Tochev 

PhD title: Intelligent Factory Process Scheduling in Industry 4.0

Supervisors:  Prof. Svetan Ratchev and Dr. Harald Pfifer

Research Summary
The goal of this research is to design a novel scheduling protocol and means of application for a company moving into an Industry 4.0 environment. This involves gathering information about current state of the art technology and processes and using these to develop a representative test environment for new solutions. These solutions will then be assessed and refined further if they show promise. Once a suitable process scheduling method has been established, the project will focus on applying it to an existing factory environment.
 
 
 
Agajan Torayev

Agajan Torayev

PhD title: TSelf-learning for Optimum Manufacturing Equipment (Individual and Collective Response)

Supervisors: Prof. Svetan Ratchev, Dr Giovanna Martinez-Arellano, Dr Jack C Chaplin

Research Summary 
The PhD project is focused on developing machine learning methods allowing individual and collective self-learning within a regulated environment. The learning process will utilise the status data, past experiences, and key parameters to analyse possible scenarios and propose actions to achieve individual and collective goals. Newly learned skills, combined with the context in which they are relevant, will supplement the predefined set of user-supplied skills and will be used individually or collectively to respond promptly when similar situations arise in the future. I am investigating how autonomy can support learning and adaptability within a regulated environment. I also investigate the challenges of assuring availability, flexibility, and time efficiency of modern production systems and a holistic solution for self-learning manufacturing systems.
 
 
 
Dmitrii Ushmaev (002)

Dmitrii Ushmaev

PhD title: Towards the Improvement of the Thermal Compliance of Thermal Barrier Coatings

Supervisors: Prof  Dragos Axinte and  Dr Zhirong Liao

Research Summary 

Ceramic materials with low thermal conductivity and high melting temperature are used as a coating layer in order to increase the operating temperature of an engine and process efficiency and to protect substrate material from harsh working conditions.

Due to the high thermal expansion coefficient and severe operation temperatures, thermal stresses are induced in the coating material, leading to buckling and spallation of the protective layer.

The project aims to prolong the life of thermal barrier coatings, investigate the possible ways of thermal compliance improvement of TBCs via laser source, and understand the mechanisms of structure formation and modification.

 
 
 
Xi Wang

Xi Wang

PhD title:  Design and control of thin soft robot for confined space inspection

Supervisors: Dr. Xin Dong; Prof. Dragos Axinte and Dr. Luca Raimondi

Research Summary
Own the inherent safety provided by the compliant body, soft robot exerts unique functions in some industrial application such as micromanipulation and vulnerable confined space inspection compared with their rigid robot counterpart. The aim of the project is the design and control of soft robots (crawling and quadrupole walking) based on a linear DEA (dielectric elastomer actuator) unit that can conduct the inspection in open and narrow spaces. The research interests also include the development of smart material technology, intelligent control methodology, and advanced manufacturing method.
 
 
 
Kieran Winter

Kieran Winter

PhD title:  Advanced Machining Technology for Active Materials

Supervisors: Dr. Zhirong Liao and Prof. Dragos Axinte

Research Summary
In the search for increasing electrical machine efficiencies, a complete understanding of the influences that manufacturing operations have on their performance is vital. This research seeks to investigate the mechanisms by which non-conventional machining (Abrasive Waterjet, Wire EDM, Lasers) induced defects degrade the magnetic properties of both soft and hard magnetic materials. Metallurgical analyses will include SEM, EBSD, and TEM, whilst novel methods of magnetic domain imaging will be used to study changes in the micro-magnetic structure. An understanding of the machining-induced magnetic degradation will be important for improving the efficiencies of electrical machines.
 
 
 
Shusong Zan

Shusong Zan

PhD title: Research on material removal mechanism and surface integrity when machining metal matrix composites.

Supervisors: Prof. Dragos Axinte and Dr. Zhirong Liao

Research Summary 
Metal matrix composites (MMCs) are widely used in industrial applications due to their superior properties like light weight, high strength, high wear resistance, etc. However, their heterogeneous structure brings more challenges in obtaining good surface integrity after machining. The main purpose of this project is to study the effects of reinforcement on material removal mechanism and surface integrity when machining MMCs. So as to improve the machinability of these materials and promote their industrial application.
 
 
 
Zhongyi (Michael) Zhang

Zhongyi (Michael) Zhang

PhD title: Development of a data fusion pipeline for all-optical dimensional measurement

Supervisors: Prof: Richard Leach, Dr. Sofia Catalucci and Dr. Adam Thompson

Research Summary
Data fusion has been widely employed in surface metrology because it combines information and data from multiple sensors, providing improved accuracy and coverage compared to single-sensor measurement system. This project is aimed at developing data fusion solutions for form and surface texture metrology based on machine learning. To understand the existing algorithms and develop new solutions, test data will be collected from artefacts with various geometrical complexities via fringe projection and coherence scanning interferometry. The algorithms proposed by this research will be aimed at combining the advantages of the existing algorithms with machine learning techniques, such as clustering, grouping and regression.
 
 
 

Xuelei Zhao

PhD title: Incremental Sheet forming (ISF) of Biocompatible materials for medical applications

Supervisors:  Dr Hengan Ou and Mr Andrew Gleadall

Research Summary
The demand for manufacturing highly customized products at a reasonable cost has heightened the need for developing innovative and flexible forming processes. Incremental Sheet Forming (ISF) is one of the new forming processes that has drawn significant attention in recent years. This forming process has been mainly applied in the automotive and aerospace fields so far. This project aims to use the ISF technique to process biocompatible polymers, such as PEEK and PMMA for medical applications. Research work will concentrate on the deformation mechanism, formability and optimum processing windows affordable ISF based manufacturing of cranio-maxillofacial implants.
 
 
 
Hui Zhu

Hui Zhu

PhD title: Investigation of Deformation and Fracture behaviour in Incremental Sheet Forming

Supervisors:  Dr. Hengan Ou and  Prof. Atanas Popov

Research Summary
Incremental sheet forming (ISF) is a relatively new flexible sheet forming process with considerable advantages over conventional sheet forming processes in terms of improved formability and capability of manufacturing small batch or customised parts. Although advances have been made in the process design and implementation, the deformation and fracture behaviour in the ISF process is less understood. The aim of this project is to carry out ISF testing under different strain path conditions and to develop phenomenological and micromechanical based models to predict the deformation and fracture in ISF. The developed models will be implemented for ISF forming of Ti and PEEK materials for medical applications.
 
 
 

 

 

Advanced Manufacturing Technology Research Group

The University of Nottingham
Faculty of Engineering
The University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD



email:AdvManufacturing@nottingham.ac.uk