School of Computing and Engineering

Impact of Smart Technologies on the Improvement of Sustainability Based Performance in Urban Water Systems

Primary supervisor: Dr Kourosh Behzadian

Start dates: January, May and September of each academic year

Duration: 3 years for full-time PhD or 5 years for part-time PhD

Research context

Research at the University of West London lives in an ecosystem of interdisciplinary research. This PhD position is based in the School of Computing and Engineering.

Given the increased potable water demand due mainly to population growth and high price of potable water, the application of smart technologies for novel water appliances (e.g. rainwater harvesting schemes and grey water recycling schemes) and water efficient micro-components/appliances sounds to be an effective technique in the context of water demand management to maximise the capacity of the existing and new infrastructure. This is increasingly viewed not only as a potential means of reducing potable water demand but also as a measure to reduce the adverse environmental impacts in urban water system (UWS) including water supply and urban drainage systems. Although the level of potable water reduction by applying efficient micro-components/water recycling schemes has been investigated by many researchers, this PhD study aims to explore the relevant impact on sustainability based performance of the UWS about which little is known.

Research goal

The main goal of this research is to explore the impact of different combinations of novel and smart technologies and identify the best/optimal composition which can effectively improve the long-term sustainability of urban water systems. The sustainability performance which will be analysed in this PhD research are a number of performance metrics in urban water systems. These metrics include reliability, resilience, energy, capital and operational cost, greenhouse gas emissions. The suggested methodology is demonstrated, tested and verified through a real-life case study of urban water systems.

Candidate profile

Applicants will be expected to hold a good first degree (first or upper second class) and/or a Masters degree (or equivalent) in Civil Engineering, Water Engineering, Environmental Engineering, Natural Resources or other similar disciplines. The candidate should be able to work in a collaborative environment, with a strong commitment to reaching research excellence and achieving assigned objectives. It is expected that the PhD candidates will carry out applied research work that will start from the establishment of a theoretical framework, continue with the implementation of a software prototype and the experimentation with real data, and conclude with the validation of a proposed solution through a real-life case study.

Besides basic knowledge in water systems, background knowledge and/or previous experience in the following areas, though not mandatory, will be considered very favourably: programming languages (e.g. MATLAB, VBA or MS Visual Studio C#), water supply and urban drainage systems.

All applicants for whom English is not their first language must also demonstrate their English language proficiency through evidence of IELTS at overall 7 (with 6.5 in all four skills) or by providing access to MA/MSc chapters or published work.

Further information

For general enquiries about the application process visit the Graduate School pages.

Questions regarding academic aspects of the project should be directed to