PhD Research Studentship Development of on-line measurement technique for insulation assessment

Applications are invited for this full-time PhD research studentship within the School of Engineering and Built Environment at Glasgow Caledonian University.  The studentship is for a period of three and a half years (42 months), subject to satisfactory progress.

The studentship provides payment of tuition fees at the UK/EU rate plus an annual stipend of £14,600: please note that students from outside the EU are required to pay the difference between International and EU fees, currently this would amount to £6,672 per annum. 

The successful candidate is expected to undertake up to 6 hours of academic support activity per week.

Project Description:

This project aims to meet a challenge in an area of insulation diagnostics which is important to the electrical transmission and distribution community.

Partial Discharge (PD) activity is becoming important as an indicator of faults in insulation systems. However, this does not provide the ideal answer in condition monitoring as it indicates a serious fault requiring rapid intervention by the user. The project proposes to investigate methods for measuring deterioration of insulation systems prior to PD occurring.

Regions of low relative impedance in insulation and increasing dielectric loss are precursors to rapidly degrading defect formation. Developing knowledge and instrumentation to diagnose non-PD faults would have significant impact on electricity supply reliability.

The project will investigate practical and theoretical testing for defect identification, e.g. impedance spectroscopy, dielectric measurement, etc. Software simulation of changes in practical conformations of insulation would determine the suitability of methods of investigation.

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From the techniques investigated and simulations, an appropriate methodology for determining localised changes in insulation properties, in a practical on-line manner, will be selected. A prototype instrument would be developed to prove the viability of carrying out on-line insulation assessment.

Project Lead:  Dr Donald Hepburn (

Further information available here

Required background and/or experience of the candidate:

The candidate should possess a relevant 1st or 2.1 honours degree with a high level of software skills. Practical testing experience would be advantageous.

How to Apply:

Application forms are available via the ‘Apply’ button below, and once completed should be returned to

Please state the Project Title (as above) on the completed application form.

The closing date for applications is Friday 28th June; short-listed candidates will be contacted by end of July with interview details. 

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