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Professor Philippa A.S Reed MA, PhD, FIMMM, CEng, FHEA

Professor of Structural Materials, Head of Mechanical Engineering Department

Professor Philippa A.S Reed's photo

Professor Philippa A.S. Reed is Professor of Structural Materials within Engineering and Physical Sciences at the University of Southampton.

Philippa graduated with a BA (Hons) in Materials Science and Metallurgy from Cambridge University in 1985, where she also obtained her Ph.D. on brittle failure in nuclear pressure vessel steels sponsored by Rolls Royce and Associates. Subsequent post-doctoral research at Cambridge investigated fatigue failure of aerospace turbine disc materials and was supported by Rolls Royce and DRA Aerospace, Farnborough. She then spent six months at Oxford University as a SERC Postdoctoral Research Fellow before joining the Department of Engineering Materials in 1992 as a lecturer. She was elected to the Structural Materials Peer Review College of EPSRC in 1997, gaining CEng status in 1998, a Senior Lectureship in 1999, a Readership in 2002, Professorial status in 2006 and was elected a Fellow of the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining in 2009. She is currently Head of the Mechanical Engineering Department in the School of Engineering

BA, Metallurgy and Materials Science, University of Cambridge, 1985

PhD, University of Cambridge, 1990

Postdoctoral research associate, University of Cambridge, 1988-1991

SERC Research Fellow, University of Oxford, 1991-1992

Lecturer in Engineering Materials, University of Southampton, 1992 -1999

Senior Lecturer in Engineering Materials, University of Southampton, 1999-2002

Reader in Engineering Materials, University of Southampton, 2002-2006

Professor in Structural Materials, University of Southampton, 2006 onwards

Head of Mechanical Engineering, University of Southampton, 2015 onwards

Research interests

Philippa’s research interests centre on investigating micromechanisms of failure in a range of structural materials including engine materials, power generation turbine materials, hybrid pressure vessels, pipes and welds. This includes application of numerical modelling approaches to failure problems; assessment and modelling of crack initiation and growth behaviour in a range of materials systems/architectures. A particular focus is the effects of external service conditions such as temperature, environment (e.g. oxidation and hydrogen embrittlement) and complex loading on failure processes. These interests are reflected in her recent and ongoing research collaborations with EDF, Rolls Royce, TWI and many other industry partners.

PhD Supervision

Philippa has supervised over 45 PhD programmes to completion and have several current PhD projects running and future opportunities

Research group

Engineering Materials

Affiliate research group

national Centre for Advanced Tribology at Southampton (nCATS)

Research project(s)

Finite element modelling of fatigue crack growth in multi-layered systems under large scale yielding conditions

3D Imaging Of The Tensile Failure Mechanisms Of Carbon Fibre Composites

Early crack initiation processes in steel arc welds

Luminescene Wear Monitoring of Tribological Coatings

Micromechanistic analysis of damage evolution in aerospace and automotive materials - Dormant

Adaptive numeric modelling in the production of gas cylinders - Dormant

Teardrop cracking: mechanism and design criteria

In-situ characterization of microstructure and fatigue performance of Al-Si piston alloys

Life assessment methods for industrial steam and gas turbines

An evaluation of cohesive zone models for adhesive failure in bonded joints - Dormant

Assessment of advanced nickel based turbine materials

The purpose of this project is to establish a broad based understanding of the microstructural factors controlling the high temperature properties (including creep and fatigue life) of turbine blade and disc alloys of interest to QinetiQ.

Short crack growth and propagation in steels under creep-fatigue cycling

Failure by low-cycle fatigue is one important consideration in the design of structures used at elevated temperatures. The aim of this project is to investigate the failure mechanisms of 316 stainless steel during creep-fatigue cycling. A programme of tests was conducted to examine short crack growth behaviour in reversed-bending, high strain fatigue cycle that contained a tensile hold- period.

Analysis of a Composite Materials using Multi-Scale Computed Tomography Techniques

Evaluating homogeneity in AZ91 magnesium alloy processed by high-pressure torsion and equal-channel angular pressing

Head of Mechanical Engineering Department

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Book Chapters


Journal Special Issue



  • Scott, M., Boardman, R. P., Reed, P. A. S., Byatt, D., Stark, I., Cox, S. J., Coles, S. J., Collins, A., Earl, G. P., Jasion, G., Mbuya, T. O., & Soady, K. A. (2016). Introducing research data - fourth edition. University of Southampton.

Module lead for SESM1016, Mechanical Systems Analysis (Part 1)

Module lead for FEEG2005, Materials and Structures (Part 2)

Lecturer on SESG3024, Manufacturing and Materials (Part 3)

Part 2 Lead for Mechanical Engineering


Professor Philippa A.S Reed
Engineering, University of Southampton, Highfield, Southampton. SO17 1BJ United Kingdom

Room Number : 5/3005

Facsimile: (023) 8059 3016

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