PhD Research Studentship at Abertay University

Digital Soil Mapping and smartphones technology for assessing soil physical and mechanical properties

Soil properties (such as organic carbon) can be estimated using modern data mining and modelling approaches. The proposed approach correlates soil colour and image structure metrics extracted from smartphone and tablet camera images, as well as environmental factors. This principle was used as a foundation to develop a mobile phone app which measures Scottish soil organic carbon content. This project aims to improve on this concept with a model that enhances the performance and functionality, and integrates it with the system hosting the app. Furthermore, the project proposes analysing the pH, bulk density, particle size distribution and permeability of the soil utilising images. Upon the development of the model, a new SolEst app will be developed which provides an environmentally-friendly and costless platform for land managers working in the construction and agriculture sectors to analyse these and other soil properties using their mobile phone. This interdisciplinary project merges geotechnical engineering, digital technology and artificial intelligence to introduce a cutting-edge method for soil analysis using smartphone which is widely available.

The project is the combination of modelling, laboratory and experimental work which enables the PhD candidate to acquire skills of programming, working in-situ and in laboratory during the course of the program.

Application closing date: 14/12/2020

More information in this attachement.

PhD position on the resilience of infrastructure earthworks subjected to extreme rainfall

A joint PhD position on the resilience of infrastructure earthworks subjected to extreme rainfall at Newcastle University and Durham University

Applications are welcome for a joint PhD position between Newcastle University and Durham University. The main objective of this doctoral project is to devise, via analytical and numerical modelling, practical solutions to enhance the resilience of infrastructure earthworks (such as dams, embankments) subjected to extreme rainfall events. The PhD candidate will work on the development of a constitutive model to predict the hydromechanical behaviour of unsaturated soils subjected to different types of stress paths (i.e. isotropic loading and unloading, wetting and drying, shearing). The model will then be implemented into a numerical Finite Element code to assess the stability of infrastructure earthworks and evaluate the effectiveness of several stabilisation measures (e.g. drainages, water runoff interceptors, etc.) with an unsaturated soil mechanics perspective. 

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Granular Matter webinar: To the Continuum and Beyond! (Tuesday, 24 November)

The 4th Granular Matter Series Webinar will take place next Tuesday, 24 November. The speaker is Ken Kamrin, the topic and abstract are: 

To the Continuum and Beyond!

The ability to predict granular flows efficiently has been a major challenge for years.  An accurate and robust continuum model would be ideal, as it could lead to fast simulation of industrial and geo-scale problems.  However, there are a number of granular flow behaviors that complicate the development of a continuum treatment including coupled history effects, nontrivial phase change, pressure-sensitive yielding, nonlocal effects, and shear banding phenomena.  Rather than attempt to combine all these effects together, this talk will begin by identifying a class of problems that tend to be well-predicted using a very simple continuum treatment.  These are problems based on intrusion, where the intrusive dynamics of solid objects (e.g. locomotion, impact) is the primary interest.  We then discuss two ways to extend this basic continuum framework with nonstandard “add-ons”, in order to handle various complications.  First, we will discuss the state of affairs in nonlocal modeling approaches, and focus on some new results pertinent to the physics of nonlocality.  Secondly, as an alternative to adding more complexity to the continuum model, we will discuss a hybridized DEM/continuum method that allows us to adaptively choose subdomains in a problem to be treated with continuum modeling vs discrete element modeling.  This allows us to keep a simple and fast-to-solve continuum model almost everywhere, while providing a more precise DEM treatment in zones that fall outside the scope of the continuum model. 

For more information, this is the landing page:

And this is the link to the meeting room:

JOIN US at LMS, EPFL (Lausanne, November 2020)

We are looking for a PhD candidate in geomechanics

Would you like to influence the success of our high profile project BIOGEOS and gain a sense of contribution in building the next generation of sustainable geotechnics? If so, this is what you will do by joining our highly motivated team at the the laboratory for Soil Mechanics (LMS) of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Lausanne (EPFL).

BIOGEOS (BIO-mediated GEO-material Strengthening) is supported by an Advanced Grant of the European Research Council, awarded to Prof. Lyesse Laloui in 2018. We target the establishment of innovative, sustainable processes within mainstream geo-technical practices. Among the techniques developed at LMS is that of biocemented geo-materials. The significant impact of bio-cementation ranges from the protection of infrastructure
against liquefaction & poor quality of foundation soils to mitigating risks related to landslides and soil erosion which are intensified by extreme weather. BIOGEOS aims to crystallize new knowledge into constant innovation and implement state-of-the-art advances in the fields of micro-structural inspection, numerical modelling and material characterization.

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Fully funded PhD studentship at the University of Dundee on Offshore Computational Geomechanics

Development of a novel rock anchoring system for floating renewable energy mooring

This project will develop understanding and design procedures for a novel rock anchor that has been developed for simple installation in offshore environments where high tidal current velocities and environmental controls exist. The anchor concept has the benefit of being self-drilling and does not require any additional grouting operations. The anchor will be designed and optimised to operate under the specific requirements for floating tidal stream generators and future floating wind. The research will use a mix of advanced numerical simulation and laboratory validation to develop simplified design and specification techniques.

  • Application deadline: Tuesday, December 15, 2020
  • Interviews: Early, 2021
  • Start date: Before 31st March 2021
  • Funding notes: European/UK Nationals. Only The 42 months studentship (3.5 years) will cover tuition fees and an annual stipend starting at £16,000 per year (approx. net income of £1330 per month).

Use this link for further details.

Supervisors: Dr Matteo Ciantia (University of Dundee), Prof Ana Ivanovic (University of Aberdeen) and Mr Adam Caton (Sustainable Marine Energy)

Contact Matteo ( for more details / further enquiries

Assistant professor position in Geotechnical Engineering at the University of Texas

The University of Texas at Austin Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering (CAEE) invites applications for a tenure-track assistant professor position in Geotechnical Engineering. The Department seeks applicants in all areas of engineering relevant to the field of Geotechnical Engineering with representative examples including: In-situ soil and rock characterization, geotechnics of natural hazards, urban geotechnics, spatial geotechnical variability, deformation-based geotechnical analyses, underground development, energy geotechnics, and rock engineering for urban infrastructure. All candidates with advanced experience in experimental, field, computational, or a combination of these geotechnical capabilities will be considered.

See attached file for details.

Online Lecture on “Improvement of Soft Soils with special reference to Transport Infrastructure”

The organising committee of AGERP is pleased to invite you to the 10th installment of the Lecture series, which will be on ‘Improvement of Soft Soils with special reference to Transport Infrastructure‘. This is scheduled to be hosted on 13th November 2020 (AEST). Registration (free and mandatory) for this lecture closes at 00:00, 12th November 2020 (AEST). This Lecture will be delivered by Professor Buddhima Indraratna (University of Technology Sydney, Australia) and  Dr. AHM Kamruzzaman (Transport for NSW, Australia).
Further info. and registration (free but mandatory):

For further information, please refer to the attached flyer.

Dr. Partha Mishra and Professor Sarat Das,Convenor, AGERP

PostDoc position in Computational Geomechanics and Multiscale Modelling at UFZ (Germany)

The Department of Environmental Informatics at the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ) is seeking at the earliest possible date a:

PostDoc (f/m/x)- in Computational Geomechanics and Multiscale Modelling

Energy and environmental aspects of geoscience remain the greatest challenges that our society will face in the coming decades. To provide a numerical tool for environmental protection (e.g. sub-surface integrity) and energy transition (e.g. underground energy storage), Department of Environmental Informatics develops an open-source Finite Element platform, OpenGeoSys in C++. The tool enables us to simulate multi-physical processes in sub-surface such as fluid and heat transport, or rock deformation and failure. For simulation of discontinuous deformation or crack propagation in rock, a variational phase-field (VPF) model has been adapted and implemented in OpenGeoSys (OGS-6). Within the GeomInt2 project ( the VPF method shall be further developed and applied to various applications such as field experiments in the Underground Research Laboratories and Mines in Mont Terri (Opalinus clay) and Springen (salt rock), respectively. 

Closing date for applications:

Place of work: Leipzig

More information here.

ICONHIC 2021 : Session on Physical and Numerical Modelling of Landslide-Structure-Interaction

Dear All,

I am glad to invite you to participate in the Special Session: Physical and Numerical Modelling of Landslide-Structure-Interaction (LSI) in ICONHIC 2021 (22 – 24 June 2021 in Athens :

Attached flyer.

Sabatino Cuomo
University of Salerno, Italy