Research Student Gains Industry Award

| Transport

PhD student works on noise reduction on propellors

BAE Systems has recognised a postgraduate researcher from the University of Strathclyde with its “PhD Student of the Year” award for his innovative engineering concept for marine vessels.

26-year old Callum Stark from the University’s Naval Architecture, Ocean & Marine Engineering (NAOME) department was selected as the overall winner for his research to create quieter marine propellers.

Human-related underwater radiated noise (URN) has a detrimental impact on marine organisms who use the acoustic environment to perform key biological functions. As the propellers are a significant contributor to noise pollution, it is important to mitigate their effect and minimise the impact.

The bio-inspired concept is based on leading-edge tubercles – the raised bumps on the pectoral fins of humpback whales, which are believed to improve manoeuvrability. When the concept is applied to marine propellers, it makes them quieter.

Callum, from the Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides, has also secured a job with BAE Systems in Barrow-in-Furness. Commenting on the award, he says: “I am very happy to receive this award and to be recognised for my contribution to a key research area of interest to BAE Systems, with potential wider impacts for the sustainability of the commercial shipping sector.”

According to Steve Harris, Head of External Partnerships at BAE Systems, like all the PhD finalists, Callum has done some outstanding research and BAE is proud to give him the award this year.

“University research is an essential part of developing new technology, so we are grateful to the EPSRC and all those we work with to make this possible,” he says.

Since 2010, BAE Systems has supported more than 120 PhD students at strategic universities through the annual award.

Jonathan Newell
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