Start date: October 2019

Supervisor: Dr Pleydell-Pearce, Dr J Searle and Dr F Robinson

Sponsoring company: Cogent Power Ltd. (Orb Works, Newport)

Cogent Power Ltd is a producer of World Class electrical steels including grain-oriented products at Orb Works in Newport. 

Grain oriented electrical steel is an essential material in the manufacture of energy-efficient transformers and large high-performance generators. 

The unrivalled magnetic properties result from the unique grain structure, formed through a complex production process, starting with high-silicon hot-rolled coil feedstock. 

The coatings applied to grain-oriented steels play a critical role in their performance providing insulation between laminations, holding the steel strip in tension to reduce magnetic losses and reducing magnetostriction during magnetisation and demagnetisation of the transformer core in service. 

There are two coating layers present on grain oriented electrical steel, namely Forsterite and tension coating. The Forsterite layer can exhibit variation in coverage, colour and thickness that is accentuated by the current tension coating, which is undesirable and solutions are sought to minimise or eliminate. 

This research aims to improve consistency of appearance, colour and adhesion combined with increasing the tension applied and avoidance of sticky coatings. 

The Research Engineer will: 

  • Develop a practical and academic understanding of the grain orientated electrical steel tension coating process and product. 
  • Applied knowledge gained on the surfaces and coatings to explain current deviations in tension coating performance and to work collaborative with Orb personnel in problem solving activities to optimise the current system. 
  • Identify / consider potential for improving surface cleanliness, surface treatment / conditioning prior to coating and tension coating to deliver an innovative next generation tension coating system. 
  • Conduct laboratory scale research on the surface cleanliness, surface treatment / conditioning / surface reactivity and coating options identified by feasibility studies. 

Swansea University is a top 30 UK institution for research excellence (Research Excellence Framework 2014) and has been named Welsh University of the Year 2019 by The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide.

The Materials and Manufacturing Academy (M2A) in the College of Engineering is a Swansea University initiative which provides postgraduate research training in partnership with industry; providing access to world-class laboratories and a wealth of academic and industry expertise. The M2A is committed to delivering high quality collaborative research opportunities within an inclusive environment, funded by the Welsh European Funding Office (WEFO), the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), Swansea University and Industry partners. 

Interwoven through the research study are business, technical and entrepreneurial courses, designed to support and prepare participants for a senior role in industry or academia, on completion of their studies. Research Engineers may participate in our career mentoring system, offering opportunities to engage with M2A alumni and other senior staff from across the University.  

The Athena SWAN charter recognises work undertaken by institutions to advance gender equality. The College of Engineering is an Athena SWAN bronze award holder and is committee to addressing unequal gender representation.

Applications from women are particularly welcomed. As a positive action to address gender imbalance, female undergraduates considering a career in research are invited to join our two-day laboratory taster session and learn about a typical day in the life of a research engineer.

For more details please see here:

Administrative Contacts & How To Apply

To apply for this scholarship, please complete the online application form.

The deadline for applications is 27 May 2019. Expected interview date is in the week commencing 17 June 2019.

Informal enquiries about this scholarship are welcome and may be directed by email to:

Entry Requirements

To be eligible for WEFO funding, applicants should:

  • Be a UK or EU citizen (eligible for home tuition fees at Swansea University) and have the right to work in Wales at the end of their studies.
  • Be resident within West Wales and the Valleys at the time of enrolment and for the duration of the candidature.
  • Must not be financially able to participate in study for a postgraduate research degree without the award of this funding. 

 To be eligible for EPSRC funding, applicants should:

  • Be eligible for home tuition fees at Swansea University.
  • Have settled status in the UK, meaning no restrictions on the length of stay in the UK; and be ‘ordinarily resident’ in the UK for 3 years prior to the start of the grant, apart from temporary or occasional absences.
  • Not have been residing in the UK wholly or mainly for the purpose of full-time education. This does not apply to UK nationals and EU nationals who were ordinarily resident in the EU immediately before the period of full-time education.

If English is not your first language you will need an acceptable pass in an approved English Language qualification to make sure you get the full benefit from studying at Swansea. We consider a wide range of qualifications, including the Swansea University English Test, the British Council IELTS test (with a score of at least 6.5 and 5.5 in each component). A full list of acceptable English Language tests can be found at:

Funding Notes

The scholarship covers the full cost of UK/EU tuition fees, plus a tax free stipend of £20,000 p.a. for a period of four years


Funding Information

Application Deadline:

27 May 2019

Please see our website for how to apply:
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