Sub-micron X-ray Computed Tomography Facility at Durham University - non-equipment part

Lead Research Organisation: Durham University
Department Name: Engineering and Computing Sciences

Abstract

Researchers from many areas of science and engineering need to investigate the internal structure of solid materials and artefacts; they might want to determine the proportions of different materials, the locations of voids, the presence of water, see structural fabrics or many other possibilities. Accurate non-destructive investigation of this nature has proved almost impossible until recently. However, with the advent of new X-ray scanning machines, both available at a reasonable cost and relatively easy to use, a new world of investigation is opening up. These machines are very similar to computed tomography (CT) scanners one finds in hospitals. However these machines are constructed to be particularly suitable for scanning of materials such as soils, concrete, rock and some metals.

This proposal seeks funding to set up a new XRCT scanning facility for researchers in civil engineering, bioengineering, manufacturing, geology, archaeology and biological sciences. based at Durham University. The new facility will primarily serve groups working at Durham, Newcastle and Sheffield Universities. However it will be possible for other academics and industry to use the facility as well.

Planned Impact

This proposal is for a piece of equipment that will be used by scientists and engineers from a wide range of disciplines. It will therefore have a part to play in the impact of research activities in a similarly wide range of areas. Some examples of impact are as follows:
-Being able to see and measure the 3D microstructures of manufactured materials will help to avoid unexpected material failures which could have economic and societal impact;
-Understanding the way that voids are distributed in a soil sample allows us to determine how strength may change with climate when that soil is part of a natural or man-made slope this could help us to predict landslides induced by rainfall;
-Scanning of rocks can aid understanding of how volcanic activity can develop.
The presence of the equipment will have impact in at least these areas: civil engineering, geology, biomechanics, archaeology and manufacturing.
 
Description This grant supports an equipment grant from EPSRC for xrct.
Exploitation Route The grant supports the xrct facility at Durham and there are many users from across science and engineering
Sectors Construction,Energy,Environment,Manufacturing, including Industrial Biotechology,Pharmaceuticals and Medical Biotechnology

 
Description The equipment is used for a wide variety of investigations of solids in science and engineering
First Year Of Impact 2014
Sector Construction,Pharmaceuticals and Medical Biotechnology
 
Description Fines migration in sandstones
Amount £60,000 (GBP)
Funding ID NERC Oil & Gas CDT PhD studentship for Catriona Sellick PI is Prof. H.C. Greenwell 
Organisation Natural Environment Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2016 
End 09/2019
 
Description Nanogeochemistry of Enhanced Oil Recovery - Phase II
Amount £60,000 (GBP)
Funding ID PI is Prof. H.C. Greenwell 
Organisation BP (British Petroleum) 
Sector Private
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2016 
End 12/2019