Applications are invited for an ICASE award sponsored by EPSRC and BAE Systems. The funded PhD studentship will be hosted within the Weapon and Vehicle Systems Group, part of the Centre for Defence Engineering, at Cranfield University’s School of Defence and Security, based at Shrivenham. Read more Read less

This post is open to all UK/EU* applicants only, with the student joining a group of 27 PhD researchers working in various aspects of Defence Engineering within the Centre to provide solutions to real life problems.

This exciting PhD opportunity focused on guided small calibre projectiles (typically ranging from 5.56mm, through 7.62mm up to 12.7mm) fired from conventional weapons could provide a revolution in the capability of the soldier in the battlefield. Providing increased probability of hit at long ranges could increase mission effectiveness, reduce the risk of collateral damage, and has potential to significantly reduce the soldier’s burden. It will also add a capability to engage and defeat emerging targets such as drones that are not easily engaged with conventional ammunition.

This PhD aims to investigate the fundamental enabling technologies that underpin the design of a guided small calibre projectile. Specifically, this PhD will investigate the following principles to establish design feasibility:

a. Miniaturisation of guidance and control technology
b. Actuator technologies
c. Power and fusing module
d. Projectile design

The student will form a core part of the Weapon and Vehicle Systems Group and the wider Centre for Defence Engineering and, consequently, will also be actively encouraged to contribute to the Group’s academic publication output.

At a glance

  • Application deadlineOngoing
  • Award type(s)PhD
  • Start dateAs soon as possible
  • Duration of award3 years
  • EligibilityEU, UK
  • Reference numberCDS0001

Entry requirements

Applicants should have a first or upper second class (2:1) UK honours degree or equivalent in a closely related discipline, such as mathematics, or engineering. The ideal candidate should have some understanding in the area of simulation, numerical modelling and industrial service delivery. The candidate should be self-motivated, have good communication skills for regular interaction with other stakeholders, with an interest for industrial research. If English is not your first language, you should have an IELTS score of 7.0 or equivalent.


Sponsored by EPSRC and BAE Systems through an ICASE award this studentship will provide a bursary of up to £15,000 p.a.* In addition the studentship will also cover the tuition.

* To be eligible for this funding, applicants must be a UK/EU national.We require that applicants are under no restrictions regarding how long they can stay in the UK i.e. have no visa restrictions or applicant has “settled status” and has been “ordinarily resident” in the UK for 3 years prior to start of studies and has not been residing in the UK wholly or mainly for the purpose of full-time education. (This does not apply to UK or EU nationals). Due to funding restrictions all EU nationals are eligible to receive a fees-only award if they do not have “settled status” in the UK.

About the sponsor

Cranfield Defence and Security (CDS) is a School of Cranfield University that offers unique educational opportunities to the Defence and Security sectors of both public and private sector organisations.

Based at the Defence Academy of the United Kingdom at Shrivenham in Oxfordshire, we are the Academic Provider to the UK Ministry of Defence for all postgraduate education at the Defence Academy and training in engineering, science, acquisition, management and leadership.

We deliver the highest standards of education, training and research across a range of important subject areas in defence, security, engineering, management and leadership to meet the demands of students – both Service and civilian, national and international – for the 21st century.

Cranfield Doctoral Network

Research students at Cranfield benefit from being part of a dynamic, focused and professional study environment and all become valued members of the Cranfield Doctoral Network. This Network brings together both research students and staff, providing a platform for our researchers to share ideas, identify opportunities for collaboration and create smaller communities of practice.  It aims to encourage an effective and vibrant research culture, founded upon the diversity of activities and knowledge. A tailored programme of seminars and events alongside our Doctoral Researchers Core Development programme (transferable skills training), provide those studying a research degree with a wealth of social and networking opportunities.

How to apply

Candidates interested in this research should conduct a literature review and provide a technical report consisting of 2000-3000 words along with their CV to Prof Amer Hameed (Head of the Centre for Defence Engineering) or Dr Bidur Khanal by email.

Prof Amer Hameed:
Dr Bidur Khanal:
Dr John Economou:

The position will remain open until a successful applicant has been found. The successful applicant will receive a living allowance as per the EPSRC rules. The final interview will be based on the technical report. The successful candidate will be offered the studentship to start in Oct 2017.

In addition, Cranfield’s Centre for Defence Engineering has currently several PhD research opportunities available in similar & closely related areas including vehicle propulsion, drivelines, ride and handling. Therefore, if you have funding in place or sponsorship to cover the PhD research, please email your CV including a motivation letter to Prof Amer Hameed ( for further details.

For further information contact us today: Centre for Defence Engineering T: 44 (0) 1793 785020 or 01793 785643