Congratulations to Clare Burnett from the School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (SMAE) who has been awarded a prestigious Dunville Studentship! This postgraduate award was established in 1873 using funds from the Sorella Trust founded by William Dunville in memory of his sister, Miss Sara Dunville. Two awards of up to £2,500 per annum are allocated each year, one in Engineering and Physical Sciences (EPS) and one in Biological Sciences. Student candidates must be of three or more years' standing in Queen’s and intend to pursue research in one or other of the specified subject areas. Applicants must also hold a first class honours degree (or equivalent) in science or engineering and the studentships are tenable for up to three years, part of which may be spent working away from the University.
This year the field was very competitive. The applicants all engaged very positively with the process and were all of a very high standard. After interviewing all of the candidates, the Award panel decided that this year the EPS Studentship would be awarded to Clare who is currently working towards her PhD at SMAE where her supervisor is Dr Zafer Kazanci. Her project is entitled: “Using auxetic materials as a core for sandwich structures under severe loading conditions”. Auxetics are a class of meta-material which exhibit the unique characteristic of a negative Poisson’s ratio which expands in the direction of the applied load. Her work seeks to explore how auxetic material, constructed as a core lattice in a composite sandwich structure, will react under blast loading. This optimised sandwich structure design will be 3-D printed and experimentally tested under blast and impact loads – examining its suitability as a blast-proof structure.