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TWI celebrates its first 15 NSIRC students

TWI celebrates its first 15 NSIRC students

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NSIRC students Francisco Arteche and Antonio Camacho
NSIRC students Francisco Arteche and Antonio Camacho
The National Structural Integrity Research Centre (NSIRC), managed by TWI, has welcomed two new PhD students, taking the total number of students to 15. This number considerably exceeds the initial student intake target of 11, agreed with the Regional Growth Fund, one of the funding bodies behind NSIRC. The two engineering graduates, whose degrees will be accredited through Brunel University London, will focus their research on the use of data mining techniques and data analysis for the life extension of engineering structures and components.

Antonio Camacho will research into the development of vibration-based condition monitoring for the assessment of rotating parts and static structures. The cost-saving benefit of monitoring machinery and static structures has been increasingly attractive to the industry in previous decades. It allows operators to carry out maintenance and evaluate the lifetime of their assets. Antonio’s research will consider data-mining techniques to extract structural integrity information from long-term trending data to increase confidence in damage detection.

Francisco Arteche will research data analysis and its interpretation for use in remaining life assessments. Industries often struggle to use data in a meaningful way in order to determine the remaining life of their plant and equipment. At times, the data has substantial uncertainty that needs to be quantified for its use in remaining life assessments. Sometimes the data provide measurement of underlying factors that influence remaining life assessments and therefore give only an indirect estimate of condition of the asset. Francisco’s research will develop an innovative approach for data analyses and its interpretation to improve and support decision-making in asset integrity management.

Last year, TWI welcomed government support from the UK Regional Growth Fund to kick-start the NSIRC expansion initiative. This, together with funding put forward by TWI and a grant awarded to Brunel University London from the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), will supply new laboratories and facilities for research and development as part of the National Structural Integrity Research Centre.