UCD Graduate Studies Scholarships

Student excellence and achievement are recognised in UCD, through a variety of scholarships and awards. Students are advised to contact the UCD School in which they are interested in studying to ask about current funding possibilities.  

PhD Opportunity: 4-year funded PhD position in childhood cancer research

Systems Biology Ireland (SBI) is seeking a highly enthusiastic PhD student to conduct research in neuroblastoma, a childhood cancer as part of the Precision Oncology Ireland initiative.

Project Description & Background:

Systems Biology Ireland, established in 2009, has successfully developed an integrated mathematical modelling and experimental research programme focusing on the design of new diagnostic and therapeutic approaches to diseases, primarily cancer, based on a systems level, mechanistic understanding of cellular signal transduction networks. To accomplish these goals, SBI uses mathematical and computational modelling approaches in combination with cutting edge experimental technologies in proteomics, genomics, advanced microscopy and flow cytometry as well as cell biology and molecular biology methods.

Precision Oncology Ireland is a consortium of 5 Irish Universities, 6 Irish Cancer Research Charities (including the National Children's Research Centre), and 9 international companies aiming to develop new diagnostics and therapeutics for personalised cancer treatment. The Consortium is part-funded by Science Foundation Ireland under their Strategic Partnership Programme.

Neuroblastoma is one of the deadliest childhood cancers. One of the key drivers of the aggressive forms of this disease is MYCN. The prospective candidate will focus on investigating the role of MYCN amplification in the pathogenesis of neuroblastoma and validate new drug targets through global omics approaches for the therapy of high-risk MYCN-amplified neuroblastoma. The student will gain valuable knowledge in the analysis of signal transduction networks in neuroblastoma, network biology, omics techniques, and standard methods used in cell and molecular biology. The student will be enrolled in a structured PhD programme in the UCD School of Medicine which includes some taught elements and transferable skills training providing an excellent foundation for a research career in academia or industry.

Supervisors: Dr Melinda Halasz, Professor Walter Kolch

Location: Systems Biology Ireland, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland

Applicant Requirements: We are seeking a highly enthusiastic PhD candidate with the ability to independently plan and conduct the research project while integrating into an interdisciplinary research environment. Applicants should have a first or upper second-class honours Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in a relevant field. Excellent written, oral communication skills and a high level of competence in the English language are essential. (See UCD’s policy on minimum English language requirements here.)

Stipend & fees: The successful candidate will receive a stipend of €18,500 per annum. €5,500 will be made available towards registration fees per annum. The position is funded for four years, and subject to satisfactory progress.

Application procedure: Applicants should submit their CV, a cover letter and names and contact details of two academic referees, as a single .pdf document to

Application deadline: 31 July 2020


PhD Opportunity: UCD School of Chemistry

Phosphorus Cations as Main Group Catalysts

We are looking for a PhD student to join the Hooper group in the School of Chemistry at University College Dublin (UCD). The project will focus on the synthesis of phosphoruscations and their application in main group catalysis. This 4-year PhD studentship is to start on the 1st of September 2020 (although some flexibility is possible) and is supported by the UCD Ad Astra Scheme and the School of Chemistry.

Catalysis produces over $500 billion worth of products worldwide each year and homogeneous catalysts are used to produce a huge range of compounds, from large quantities of feedstock chemicals to complex drug molecules. Many of these catalysts are based on rare and expensive second and third row transition metals, the supplies of which are limited. Developing catalysts based on main-group elements will make catalytic processes less expensive and more sustainable. Phosphorus is an excellent candidate as a catalytic centre because it can adopt different coordination numbers and oxidation states and its NMR active nucleus provides an excellent handle to directly interrogate reactions. Phosphenium cations have 2 substituents at phosphorus and have a lone pair and empty p-orbital at the Pcentre. This allows chemical interactions with catalytic substrates in a similar manner to transition metal complexes.

The aim of this project is to synthesise and characterise a range of phosphenium cations, some based on literature precedent and others novel compounds, with varying steric and electronic properties. This is done by manipulation of the ligand backbone through organic
synthetic methods with the phosphenium centre introduced using standard air sensitive methods (Schlenk line and glove box techniques). These potential catalysts will be tested for reactivity towards small molecules and organic substrates. Onward reactivity towards the functionalisation of these substrates will be targeted with the aim of regeneration of the catalytic centre. In situ analysis of these reactions will be performed by multinuclear NMR spectroscopy, mass spectrometry and reaction kinetics studies. At the end of this project we will have a greater understanding of the reactivity of phosphenium cations and how they may be employed as catalysts.

Applications are welcome from students with, or expecting to gain, a degree in Chemistry at 1st class hons or 2:1 grade (or equivalent). In particular, candidates with experience in inorganic synthesis are strongly encouraged to apply. The successful candidate is expected
to have excellent communication skills (oral and writing). This position will be filled once the suitable candidate has been identified so early applications are advised. Interviews will be held by Zoom or Skype.

A scholarship of stipend €18,000 per annum is available for up to 4 years for the successful applicant via funding from the UCD Ad Astra Fellows Programme. Fees (EU Level) will be also covered. There will be a requirement to teach in undergraduate laboratories and
tutorials as part of the scholarship.

How to Apply
Applications should include a short cover letter, CV and the contact details for at least two academic referees and should be sent by email to Dr Tom Hooper ( no later than 15th of July 2020. Informal enquiries are also welcome.

UCD supports equal opportunities and does not discriminate against individuals on the basis of gender, age, race, colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin, religion, marital status, family status, sexual orientation, disability or membership of the traveller community.


PhD opportunity: UCD School of Biology & Environmental Science

Image-based phenotyping to understand the genetic basis of waterlogging in barley

Barley is a resilient crop with much potential for food security and a large collection of germplasm resources, which are yet underutilised. Modern barley cultivars tend to have a narrow genetic basis compared to landraces and their wild ancestors. Hence, improving the understanding of the genetics and genomics of heritage barley germplasm will provide the opportunity to improve barley’s yield and stress resistance. In recent years, European countries have experienced a stagnation of barley yields, which could be attributed to the emerging effects of climate change. Plant stress responses can be observed using non-invasive methods such as image-based phenotyping, enabling the detection of altered plant performance in response to environmental stress. Plant images will be collected using imaging platforms in a controlled environment and unmanned aerial vehicles in field conditions (UAVs). 

This exciting project will improve our understanding of the genetic basis of waterlogging tolerance by exploring a germplasm collection of heritage barley. The student will use state-of-the-art phenotyping imaging equipment and utilize concepts from statistical genetics and association mapping.  The PhD student will have the opportunity to participate in training courses, workshops and conferences. The research will be supervised by Assist. Prof. Dr. Sónia Negrão and Dr. Nadia Al-Tamimi from UCD- School of Biology and Environmental Science. This work is in collaboration with UCD- School of Agriculture and Food Science and UCD- School of Computer Science and will combine field trials, high-throughput phenotyping platforms, machine learning and association mapping. This Ph.D. project is part of the SFI President of Ireland Future Research Leaders Award lead by Principal Investigator for this research programme Dr. Sónia Negrão at the School of Biology and Environmental Science, University College Dublin.

This is a 4-year full-time position, with a stipend of €18,500 per annum.

Candidates should hold bachelor’s or master’s degree in biology, crop sciences or related field, with excellent data analysis skills, and have an interest in plant genetics and crop physiology. Previous experience with crop stress physiology and plant-imaging with either high-throughput platforms and/or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) would be desirable but not mandatory. Candidates must demonstrate an awareness of equality, diversity and inclusion agenda. 

Application process
Informal enquiries are welcome and should be directed to Assist. Prof. Dr. Sónia Negrão ( 
Applications including a detailed CV, letter of motivation (max 2 pages, single spaced) and transcripts should be sent to no later than 24th July 2020

PhD Opportunity: UCD Institute of Food and Health

Valorisation of polar and non-polar compounds from algae for functional food and nutraceuticals development

Algae (micro and macroalgae) are largely exploited due to their rich composition in high-value compounds, mainly protein, but also fatty acids, carbohydrates and pigments. These compounds offer enormous potential industrial applications in the area of functional foods, nutraceuticals & cosmetics due to their wide range of biological activities. This thesis will investigate the extraction of polar and other non-polar compounds from algae (microalgae and seaweed) and the in vitro biological activities of these compounds for their use as nutraceuticals. The elucidation and optimization of the most promising extraction processes (i.e. ultrasounds, microwave and

supercritical fluids) will be a key focus of this work together with the purification and characterization of the extracted compounds.

Scholarship (European and non-European students):
4 years funding starting in January 2021.
The studentship award includes full tuition fee waiver and a PhD stipend of €18,000 per annum.

Essential Criteria
 BA/BSc minimum 2.1 honours level degree in chemistry, biochemistry or related field.
 MA/MSc in chemistry, biochemistry, food chemistry or related disciplines.
 Experience in research design and/or data analysis (Excel and SPSS).
 Ability to work independently and as part of a multi-disciplinary team.
 Excellent English writing skills.
 Applicants whose first language is not English must demonstrate English language
proficiency of IELTS 7.0 (no band less than 6.5 in each element), or equivalent. Other valid
qualifications here:


Desirable Criteria
 Practical experience with any of the following techniques – HPLC and/or GC.
 Previous or forthcoming research dissemination (e.g., research publications, conference

How to Apply
For further information and to apply, please send your CV (2 pages indicating clearly the English language requirements met by the candidate), cover letter (1 page including the name and contact details of 2 academic referees) to

Closing date: 7th September 2020, 5PM (Irish time)


PhD Opportunity: PhD Position in UCD School of Public Health, Physiotherapy and Sports Science

Dietary sugars/sweeteners during pregnancy and their impact on long term maternal metabolic and reproductive health

There is significant evidence that an unhealthy diet greatly increases therisk of complications during pregnancy and predisposes offspring to metabolic dysfunction and obesity. While fat intake is typically associated with the onset of obesity and its comorbidities, there is increasing evidence linking sugar, particularly high fructose corn syrup, to the global rise in obesity rates. This has resulted in an increase in the consumption of artificial sweeters. However, the impact of these compounds on  fertility (male and female), pregnancy outcome and long-term health outcomes in mother and child have not been comprehensively assessed.

This project will investigate the effects of sugars/artificial sweeteners in combination with a high fat diet in an early life setting on metabolic and reproductive outcomes. This project will provide training in key laboratory skills ranging from rodent physiology, biochemical, cellular and molecular techniques. Training in experimental design, data analysis and scientific writing will also be provided.

This project would be ideal for a student with a background in a biological science (nutrition, physiology, reproduction, biochemistry) with a keen interested in nutrition and metabolic health.

Funding information:
This is a 4-year full-time position with a stipend of E18,000 per annum.
Candidates must meet the following eligibility criteria:
- An academic background in a biological science (nutrition, reproductive,
- High honours (at least 2:1 honours degree) in a related disciple
- High level of competence in English language with excellent written and
communication level

How to apply
The application must be submitted via email to not later than 10th July 2020 and must include:
 Diploma and Transcripts of academic records (undergraduate and postgraduates)
 A detailed CV
 A supporting statement of no more than two pages (font size 12) outlining their academic and professional experience relevant to this project
 Names and contact details of 2 academic referees

To find out more
Enquiries can be directed via email to the lead investigator, Dr. Clare Reynolds (

PhD opportunity: Maternal diet, pregnancy/birth outcomes and offspring childhood obesity

Increasing evidence suggests that early life exposure to a range of environmental factors plays a critical role in defining offspring health, both in childhood and in later life. According to the Developmental Origins of Health and Disease (DOHaD) hypothesis, transient environmental exposures during critical periods of development (such as the pre-conceptional, fetal and early infant phases of life) can alter the health trajectory of the offspring. Maternal diet is a modifiable behaviour that could play an important role in maternal, neonatal and child health outcomes. Novel findings from our individual birth cohort studies and the ALPHABET consortium highlight the potential influence of maternal dietary quality and inflammatory potential during pregnancy on birth outcomes and a range of offspring childhood health outcomes. However limited data regarding the interrelationships between maternal diet and lifestyle, placental development and birth and childhood outcomes in humans exist.

This exciting project will address this gap in the knowledge base by harnessing information on maternal diet & lifestyle and pregnancy/birth/offspring outcomes using existing databases and analysis of biological samples from several birth cohort studies. The PhD student will have the opportunity to participate in training courses, workshops and conferences. The research will be supervised by Dr Catherine Phillips, Assistant Professor and lead Principal Investigator for this research programme at the School of Public Health, Physiotherapy and Sports Science, University College Dublin. 

This is a 4-year full-time position, open to EU and non-EU candidates, with a stipend of €18,000 per annum.

Candidates should hold a bachelor’s degree in nutrition, biological sciences (physiology, developmental biology, reproduction), public health or related field and have an interest in early life/fetal programming, nutrition and metabolic health. Experience in pregnancy and childhood research, epigenetics or nutritional assessment techniques would be desirable.

Application process: 
Informal enquiries are welcome and should be directed to Dr. Catherine Phillips (

Applications including a detailed CV, letter of motivation (max 2 pages, single spaced), transcripts and two letters of recommendation (to be sent directly from referee) should be sent to no later than July 15th 2020


PhD Openings in Applied Electromagnetics and Wireless Communications 

Position description: Applications are invited for fully funded 4-year PhD positions. The start date will be in January, May, or September.

Research project: The PhD positions generally involve theoretical and applied research in electromagnetics and wireless communications. The research projects cover a broad range of topics, with a particular focus on the development of high-performance computational platforms for emerging wireless technologies in intelligent transportation (air, ground, underground), 5G and beyond wireless communications, underwater communications, indoor/outdoor localisation, as well as biomedical sensing and healthcare applications. The successful candidates are expected to conduct research, particularly, but not exclusively in the following projects: (1) Physics-based wireless channel models for large-scale environments (indoor, outdoor, underground/underwater) and their application for the intelligent planning of wireless communication systems. (2) Numerical modelling and analysis of multiphysics/multiscale problems in computational electromagnetics. (3) Machine learning and its application in electromagnetics and wireless communications. (4) RF/microwave/millimeter-wave design & measurement.

Specific research topic for the PhD position will depend on the candidate’s background. The PhD candidate will have a chance to work with industry partners and international collaborators.

Expected qualifications: The successful candidate should hold a Bachelor or Master degree in electrical/electronic engineering, computer science, applied mathematics/physics or a related discipline, and should have a solid background in mathematics, electromagnetic and communication theory, as well as programming. Previous related research experience will be a plus. 

How to apply: Interested candidates should send an email to Dr. Xingqi Zhang ( along with your CV, academic transcripts, English qualifications, as well as any other documents that you believe can well demonstrate your research capability and potential.


PhD opportunity: PhDifferent

The EPSRC & SFI Centre for Doctoral Training in Advanced Metallic Systems (AMSCDT), offers something different. This programme will give you the opportunity to gain a PhD, which reflects real-world challenges, with international travel, state-of-the-art training in the manufacture of metallic materials, as well as the professional skills that will help you fast-track your career.

Join a cohort of 19 students from a variety of science and engineering disciplines to undertake a world-leading combination of training activities and doctoral research, working across the four world-leading partner universities in the AMSCDT. The training activities will take place in both the UK and Ireland, while the PhD research projects will be carried out at either DCU or UCD.

We're looking for the Science, Engineering or Maths graduates who are seeking careers in the medical device, aerospace and automotive sectors to join us for this four-year programme. The doctoral research project will focus on metallic materials and will be carried out in close collaboration with our industry partners.

For further information or contact or call +353 1 7007856


PhD Position: Understanding hepatitis E virus infection in pigs and humans

Project Description: Hepatitis E virus (HEV) is an emerging viral infection, and an increasing cause of acute viral hepatitis in the developed world. In Europe, infection with HEV is most commonly associated with the consumption of contaminated meat, mainly from pigs. In humans, most HEV infections cause an acute, self-limiting hepatitis. However, severe disease can occur, particularly in pregnant women or those with pre-existing liver disease. HEV infection is also associated with other disease manifestations including neurological disease, however the reason why severe disease occurs is poorly understood. Currently, there are no specific treatments for HEV, and there is no licenced vaccine in Europe.

HEV is extremely challenging to propagate in cell culture, and there is no robust method to screen food products for the presence of infectious virus. This project will aim to develop in vitro and ex vivo models for the study of HEV, and to use these systems to investigate the biology of this virus in pigs and humans. The student will work with an interdisciplinary team at UCD, based at the Veterinary Sciences Centre, and will have the opportunity to develop their research skills in One Health and zoonotic disease. The student will collaborate with research groups at UCD, the University of Birmingham and Pirbright Institute in the UK, and the Cleveland Clinic, Ohio, USA, over the course of the PhD programme. This is a truly interdisciplinary project, working on an important and poorly understood viral infection.

We are searching for an enthusiastic individual, with a first or upper second-class degree in a relevant subject, to work on this exciting and novel project. Ideally, the candidate should have laboratory experience, and previous experience in molecular biology and cell culture techniques would be an advantage.

Funding Notes: Applications and enquiries should be directed to Dr. Nicola Fletcher at the Veterinary Sciences Centre, University College Dublin, Ireland ( Please submit a CV and letter of motivation with applications. The stipend for this position will be €18,500 + full EU or non-EU fees paid for 4 years.


Call for PhD & Post Doc applications – Cloud-based Building Information Modelling (CBIM)

CBIM is a new European research and training network in the area of Cloud-based Building Information Modelling. There are 14 fully funded PhD positions for highly talented people who are eligible for study at any one of its partner universities. Each PhD student will be employed full time for three years at one of the CBIM partner universities or at one of the three CBIM beneficiary companies, while pursuing a PhD degree at one of the universities. There is also one funded Post Doc position at the Technion.

CBIM Universities: 

  • University of Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • University College London, United Kingdom
  • Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, Israel
  • Technical University of Berlin, Germany
  • University College Dublin, Ireland

CBIM Companies

  • Trimble Oy, Espoo, Finland
  • LocLab Consulting, Darmstadt, Germany
  • Fundacion CARTIF, Valladolid, Spain

CBIM is funded by the EU Horizon 2020 program under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network call, and the stipends/salaries are particularly generous. For more information about:

- CBIM, please visit the relevant website:

- instructions for how to apply for one of the 14 PhD (ESR - early stage researcher) positions:

- the Post Doc position, please write to Prof. Rafael Sacks, at


PhD programme in Metallurgical Challenges for the Digital Manufacturing Environment

 Do you want to graduate with a globally competitive PhD in an area that is transforming Ireland's economy? Do you want to work on a challenging project in partnership with industry? I-Form is looking for the brightest maths, science and engineering graduates to join the Centre for Doctoral Training in Metallurgical Challenges for the Digital Manufacturing Environment from September 2019. The Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) brings together a group of PhD students from diverse backgrounds to tackle today's evolving issues and future challenges in an exciting environment, linked with industry and supporting broad skills development in areas such as responsible innovation, leadership, science in the media and industrial training.

Being part of this innovative training network means:

  • Cohort based training across four academic sites with PhDs working side-by-side on industry relevant projects
  • Time embedded with industry partners
  • Graduating with a broad set of professional leadership skills alongside your doctoral research

The four universities involved are: University College Dublin, Dublin City University, University of Sheffield and University of Manchester.

If you are interested in a PhD in the following areas in the metallic manufacturing sector, then send your CV or email queries to

  • Additive Manufacturing
  • Advanced Manufacturing (e.g. laser processing, joining technologies etc)
  • Innovative product and process design
  • Data capture, process monitoring & control
  • Design for manufacturing

(Please note, the funding awarded for this programme covers EU student fees only.) Relevant website


PhD Studentship Neuromuscular Systems: Multi-Domain Lifestyle Targets for Improving ProgNOsis in Huntington’s Disease

Applications are invited for a PhD studentship funded through the EU Joint Programme – Neurodegenerative Disease Research (JPND) and Health Research Board (HRB) with the Neuromuscular Systems Research Lab at University College Dublin. This project is in collaboration with a network of European Partners, including the Centre for Trials Research (CTR), Cardiff University.

The PhD candidate will develop and validate signal processing algorithms for capturing physical activity in Huntington’s disease (HD) patients using wearable sensors. HD is a progressive, life-limiting neurodegenerative disease. It has serious consequences for the individual and their families. No current treatment to modify the course of the disease exists. Improved evidence-based symptom assessment is crucial to optimising disease management. This project aims to identify key environmental factors (physical activity, sleep activity and nutrition) that may be responsive in targeted interventions with a view towards optimising disease management for individuals with HD.  The PhD applicant will have the opportunity to travel to other European project partner’s research facilities. The project will commence in May/Sept 2019. 

Applicants should have, or expect to obtain, a first or upper second class honours Bachelors or Masters degree in Electrical, Electronic or Biomedical Engineering (or a related discipline).  Suitable candidates will have a strong interest in biomedical/neural engineering and neuroscience. Excellent analytical, computational and communications skills are essential. Experience in wearable sensing, data analysis and predictive modelling are also an advantage.

The PhD studentship covers tuition fees for EU applicants and a tax free stipend of €18,000 per year. An annual allowance is provided for research consumables and for conference attendance.

To apply, please send a cover letter describing your experience and interest in this project (1 page max), CV, and academic transcripts to

Professor Madeleine Lowery

UCD School of Electrical & Electronic Engineering

University College Dublin


Dublin 4


Email: or



MEngSc (Research) - Attitude Determination and Control Systems (ADCS) Design for EIRSAT-1 Ireland's first Satellite

This research masters will focus on the development of Attitude Determination and Control Systems(ADCS)for EIRSAT-1, Ireland's first Satellite. The mission will test and compare two separate ADCS algorithms while in orbit. One off the shelf ADCS and a second novel control scheme developed in UCD. The CubeSat will utilise a 3-axis magnetorquer set up for actuation and a gyro/magnetometer/sun sensor arrangement for attitude determination.  These need to be tested and verified before launch, through simulation and hardware in the loop testing.

The role will have the following responsibilities:

  • Continued development of a space environment simulation for 2U CubeSat in low earth orbit
  • Controller implementation for satellite detumbling and pointing
  • Testing and verification of the ADCS through hardware in the loop testing
  • Create and maintain test plan and test specification documentation
  • Develop new ADCS hardware for future missions


  • Undergraduate degree in Engineering or Science
  • High standard of spoken and written English
  • Ability to work to deadlines and work as part of an interdisciplinary team

The successful applicant will join the Dynamics and Control Systems Group based in UCD School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering. The group has 8 years of experience working of projects with the European Space Agency controlling the flexibility in space structures ranging from launchers, to X-ray telescopes and robotics arms. EIRSAT-1 is a 2U CubeSat being built, tested and operated by University College Dublin as part of the European Space Agency’s Fly Your Satellite! programme.

For informal enquiries contact: Professor David J. Browne at

Interested applicants should send a CV, together with a cover letter to Professor David J. Browne at


MEngSc (Research) - Design, Testing and Verification of a CubeSat antenna deployment module

This research masters will focus on the testing and verification of the Antenna Deployment Module (ADM) for EIRSAT-1, Ireland's first Satellite. The ADM stores two dipole antennae during launch and deploys the antennae upon reaching a safe from the international space station. Successful deployment allows communication to be established between the ground station and the satellite and is therefore a mission critical element of the design.

The ADM has been full designed and manufactured in UCD and requires through testing and verification, and possible redesign of the deployment mechanism, before flight.

The role will have the following responsibilities:

  • Oversee manufacturing the of Antenna Deployment Module
  • Assembly and integration of the ADM in a cleanroom environment
  • Design and build a test procedure and specification plan for the ADM
  • Low temperature testing of the ADM
  • Oversee the vibration test campaign
  • Create and maintain test plan and test specification documentation


  • Undergraduate degree in Engineering or Science
  • High standard of spoken and written English
  • Ability to work to deadlines and work as part of an interdisciplinary team

The successful applicant will join the Dynamics and Control Systems Group based in UCD School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering. The group has 8 years of experience working of projects with the European Space Agency controlling the flexibility in space structures ranging from launchers, to X-ray telescopes and robotics arms. EIRSAT-1 is a 2U CubeSat being built, tested and operated by University College Dublin as part of the European Space Agency’s Fly Your Satellite! Programme.

For informal enquiries contact: Professor David J. Browne at

Interested applicants should send a CV, together with a cover letter to Professor David J. Browne at


2 x PhD Opportunities - Solidification of Metallic Alloys

4-year scholarships to cover PhD fees, stipend, and travel expenses.

Two new PhD opportunities are immediately available for suitably qualified candidates. One is sponsored by the European Space Agency (ESA), the other by Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) as part of the I-Form Research Centre based at UCD.

1.     ESA project on alloy solidification in space

UCD has been involved over a number of years in ESA-funded research on the effects of gravity on alloy solidification – which is important in manufacturing processes such as casting, welding and additive manufacturing. In particular, funding is now available for a PhD student to work on a project (called XRMON) on X-Ray MONitoring of solidification processes in space. This will include design, execution and analysis of experiments on short-duration microgravity facilities like parabolic fights and sounding rockets, with plans currently being made for long-duration experiments on the International Space Station. It is envisaged that the student will have the opportunity to experience zero gravity directly and personally by participating in an ESA parabolic flight campaign.  

2.     I-Form project on Additive Manufacturing with Metals

The new I-Form Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre, funded by Science Foundation Ireland and based at UCD, will draw together research expertise from academia and industry to deliver innovation in Additive Manufacturing (AM) techniques and processes. I-Form research combines novel metrology, materials science, computational modelling, data analytics and control theory to achieve significantly enhanced AM processing efficiency for metals and polymers.

For AM of metallic alloys, we will develop and validate new models for the simulation of powder flow, metal melting, melt flow, metal solidification, and microstructure evolution, as well as constitutive models of resulting mechanical properties. The overall goal is to deliver a process-structure-property through-process model for the first time. As part of this new research programme, Prof. David Browne is recruiting a PhD student to work on the computational modelling of the melting and solidification phenomena which occur layer-by-layer in 3D printing involving scanning a bed of metal alloy powder particles with laser or electron beams .

Expertise and Education required

Upper Honours Bachelors or Masters degree in Mechanical Engineering, Materials Engineering, or Metallurgy. The candidate should have excellent communication skills – written and oral – in English, good mathematical, experimental and computer skills, and be capable of team-work.

Interested graduates, or current final year students, should send their CV, indicating preferred PhD project, along with a cover letter, to:

Professor David J. Browne

School of Mechanical & Materials Engineering

University College Dublin

Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland,

Tel. +353 1 716 1901                                    

preferably via email:


School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering

A. Sharing Economy Systems

We are seeking excellent candidates to work in the following areas as part of a sharing economy project. Currently we have 5 Ph.D. positions and one Postdoc position available in the following areas.

1. Dimensioning and control of Sharing Economy System

2. Congestion management and behavioural analytics for Sharing Economy Systems

3. Human-in-the-loop data-science

4. Blockchain and DAGS for high frequency sharing economy micropayments

5. Design of Cyber-Physical Systems

The positions will involve the development of theory at the interface of control theory, statistics, economics, and computer science, as well as the realisation of a number of practical (mobility based) demonstrators. Some of the research will be conducted in collaboration with IBM Research, with potential for significant interaction with other industrial companies.

B. Advanced Manufacturing

We have one Ph.D.  position in the area of cyber-physical systems for 3D manufacturing applications. The focus of the positions will be in the area of cooperative control involving humans and machines, as well as cognitive computing with a focus of operator-machine optimisation. This is part of the new I-FORM centre. 

C. Automotive 

We are also seeking candidates for our mobility work in the context of the Enable-S3 project and for our work with Lero. The project seeks to develop tools to test and evaluate autonomous vehicles, and to develop distributed control/optimization algorithms for connected car projects. As part of both of these projects we will also explore closed loop design of recommender systems.

To apply

Applications should be submitted to Applicants should submit a CV and the names of 3 referees. All Ph.D. candidates will be expected to fulfil the English language requirements for admission to the Ph.D. programme at University College Dublin.

For further information, please contact or refer to All positions are funded by Science Foundation Ireland.


Intel Masters Student Scholarships

This sponsorship programme sees up to 16 UCD students selected each year each to receive a monetary grant as well as ongoing support and mentor provision by Intel. The eligible students are those beginning full time Masters programmes in Science and Engineering related disciplines. The programme provides each participant with €3000 to support their academic studies and also ensures that students have the opportunity to experience practical learning which is aligned to the needs of industry. The provision of employee mentors by Intel provides students with a direct relationship to the world of work.

More Information can be found here.