Electric field assisted machining PhD

Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering
Entry requirements:
3 years
6 years
Reference number:
Start date:
01 October 2018
UK/EU fees:
International fees:
Application deadline:
09 March 2018



in the UK for research quality

REF 2014


in the UK for Mechanical Engineering

The Complete University Guide 2018


of 2 Queen's Anniversary Prizes


Loughborough University is a top-ten rated university in England for research intensity (REF2014) and an outstanding 66% of the work of Loughborough’s academic staff who were eligible to be submitted to the REF was judged as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’, compared to a national average figure of 43%.

In choosing Loughborough for your research, you’ll work alongside academics who are leaders in their field. You will benefit from comprehensive support and guidance from our Doctoral College, including tailored careers advice, to help you succeed in your research and future career. 

Project detail

The application of electric-field in materials processing will revolutionise future manufacturing. In comparison with conventional thermo-mechanical processing, it is rapid, consumes less energy, has a lower environmental impact and requires less capital investment. However, statements like these need justification beyond laboratory scale experiments. Through this project, we aim to gain a comprehensive understanding of mechanical (super)plasticity in metals and alloys induced by high-intensity electric fields for improvement of material processing in modern manufacture. The research will focus on the influence of the imposed electric field on the alloy material taking into consideration the initial underlying micro-structure of the material.

An electric field-assisted machining system will be designed, developed and installed on an existing CNC machine, with the aim of cutting metals without coolants, using less force and machining-induced damage. Machining studies will be conducted at industrially relevant machining conditions. Comparisons will be drawn with current practice for best machining outcomes. It is expected that electroplasticity enhanced machining will lead to less machining forces with reduced tool wear and post machining (tensile) residual stresses.

A new theoretical model of crystalline plasticity has been developed which will be implemented for efficient and accurate computations. The results from the experimental studies will aid calibration and validation of the numerical models accounting for specifics of the underlying microstructure under the influence of electric fields.

Finally, several case studies will be conducted on aerospace grade materials in collaboration with our research and industrial partners in Japan and in the UK.


Primary supervisor: Anish Roy

Secondary supervisor: TBC

Find out more

For further project details email Anish Roy or register your interest and ask us a question.

To find out more about the School of Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering, please visit our website.

Entry requirements

Applicants should have, or expect to achieve, at least a 2:1 Honours degree (or equivalent) in mechanical, electrical, aerospace, civil engineering or a related subject. 

A relevant Master’s degree and/or experience in one or more of the following will be an advantage: machine development, controls, design.

All students must also meet the minimum English Language requirements.

Fees and funding


Tuition fees cover the cost of your teaching, assessment and operating University facilities such as the library, IT equipment and other support services. University fees and charges can be paid in advance and there are several methods of payment, including online payments and payment by instalment. Special arrangements are made for payments by part-time students.

This is an open call for candidates who are sponsored or who have their own funding. If you do not have funding, you may still apply, however Institutional funding is not guaranteed. Outstanding candidates (UK/EU/International) without funding will be considered for funding opportunities which may become available in the School.

How to apply

All applications should be made online. Under programme name select Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering. Please quote reference number: AR1UF2018