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Dr Khong Wui Gan BEng (Hons), MSc, PhD

Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering Lecturer

Dr Khong Wui Gan's photo

Dr. Khong Wui Gan is Associate Professor in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Southampton Malaysia (UoSM). He is currently also the Postgraduate Research (PGR) Coordinator at UoSM.

His research interests include high performance advanced composites, smart/multifunctional and recycled composite materials, with the aims to make them more reliable and sustainable for high-value applications. He has led and co-investigated several research projects on composite materials funded by Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia.  
Dr. Gan graduated with a BEng (First Class Hons) in Mechanical (Aeronautics) Engineering from Universiti Teknologi Malaysia in 2007. He was then awarded an Erasmus Mundus scholarship to further his postgraduate studies in the European Masters Course in Aeronautics and Space Technology (EuMAS), a two-year double MSc degree course offered jointly by Università di Pisa, Italy and Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Spain. Soon after he was awarded a Dorothy Hodgkin Postgraduate Award to complete his PhD at the University of Bristol where he studied complex multi-axial loading in carbon-fibre reinforced polymeric (CFRP) composites at the Rolls-Royce Composites University Technology Centre (UTC) in Bristol. 
Before joining the University of Southampton Malaysia in 2014, Dr. Gan worked on a 1-year Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) project with Rolls-Royce plc at Derby and the Rolls-Royce Composites UTC at Bristol, funded by the UK EPSRC’s Impact Acceleration Award (IAA). He helped develop an analysis tool for the multi-scale damage tolerant design of tapered composite laminates for Rolls-Royce.  

Research interests

  • Advanced composite materials 
  • Smart/multifunctional composites 
  • Recycled composite materials 
  • Multiaxial testing and failure mechanisms 
  • Finite element analysis  
  • Digital image correlation (DIC) 

PhD studentships are available for candidates with a good first degree or a Master’s degree. Suitable backgrounds for these PhD positions include but are not limited to mechanical/aerospace engineering and material science. Please contact for information.


Research project(s)

Integrated experimental and computational characterisation of advanced composite materials subjected to multiaxial loading

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Low, KO., Johar, M., Israr, HA., Gan, KW., Koloor, SSR., Petru, M., & Wong KJ. (2021). Displacement rate effects on the Mode II shear delamination behavior of carbon fiber/epoxy composites. Polymers, 13(11), 1881. 
DOI: 10.3390/polym13111881 
Mohd Jailani, MH., Johar, M. Gan, KW., & Wong, KJ. (2020). Displacement rate dependence of acrylic adhesive bonded carbon/epoxy composite joints under mode I loading. Plastics, Rubber and Composites, 49(7), p. 321-328. 
DOI: 10.1080/14658011.2020.1768337

  • SESA1015 Introduction to Aeronautics and Astronautics 
  • FEEG2005 Materials and Structures 
  • MATH2048 Mathematics for Engineering and the Environment Part II 
  • MATH2047 Mathematics for Electronics & Electrical Engineering Part II 

PhD projects:

Title: Generating pseudo-ductility in hybrid short/continuous fibre-reinforced composites using recycled carbon fibres (open for PhD application) 


Despite their high strength, fibre-reinforced composites are known to be brittle, i.e. they fail catastrophically without warning. Pseudo-ductility can be generated in a composite by devising a gradual subcritical progressive damage process, such that it exhibits ‘strain-hardening’ similar to ductile metals, which can serve as a warning sign with detectable damage before final failure. 


The project aims to reuse recycled carbon fibres to generate pseudo-ductility in a hybrid glass/carbon fibre composite with improved damage tolerance. Highly-aligned short carbon fibres will be embedded within continuous glass fibre composites as a mechanism to trigger a subcritical stable delamination damage process. The project will establish the effects of material parameters (e.g. thickness and length) of the recycled carbon fibres on the subcritical delamination growth rate and pseudo-ductility, via an extensive test programme of un-notched and open-holed hybrid composite specimens. Their subcritical damage development is investigated using digital image correlation.


Title: Laser-induced graphene for health monitoring of composite materials (open for PhD application) 


Graphene is known to have high specific surface area and excellent thermal/electrical conductivity, which sees itself in applications such as wearable electronic and energy storage. Recently a graphenic nano-materials called laser-induced graphene (LIG) has been widely investigated due to its easy, cost-effective and scalable synthesis. LIG is produced through a one-step laser treatment of commercial polyimide (PI) film substrate under an ambient atmosphere. However, the potential of LIG for use in technological applications is limited by its weak adherence on the PI substrates. In order to realise the full potential of LIG, it is necessary to preserve the LIG flakes’ connectivity and robustness. One way is to infuse it with other materials such as plastic and rubber. 


In this project we propose to embed LIG in fibre-reinforced composites as smart sensors for health monitoring. The excellent thermal and electrical conductivity of LIG offers an extremely versatile and wide-range sensing platform which can be exploited to detect various physical quantities in a composite structure such as moisture uptake, strain/stress, damage area, fatigue crack propagation, etc.

The scope of the project includes: (1) optimisation of the sensitivity of LIG’s properties to external environment, (2) integration of LIG in fibre-reinforced composites, and (3) testing and validation of the sensing system at the component level.    

Dr Khong Wui Gan
University of Southampton Malaysia
C0302, Blok C Eko Galleria
Jalan Eko Botani 3
Taman Eko Botani
79100 Iskandar Puteri
Johor, Malaysia

Tel: +607-560 2460

Room: Academic suite 3L027

Room Number : 193 USMC/4001

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