Postgraduate research project

Analysis and mitigation of railway noise, vibration, wheel or rail roughness

Fully funded (UK and international)
Type of degree
Doctor of Philosophy
Entry requirements
2:1 honours degree View full entry requirements
Faculty graduate school
Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences
Closing date

About the project

The aim of the project is to investigate and develop a comprehensive understanding of the mechanisms behind railway noise, vibration and wheel or rail roughness. This includes studying the causes and effects of wheel or rail roughness, understanding the development of surface roughness over time and establishing models for predicting and mitigating the noise.

An exciting PhD opportunity is available at the Institute of Sound and Vibration Research, University of Southampton focusing on the noise and vibration of railways.

Railways are extensively utilized worldwide as an efficient, environmentally friendly and sustainable mode of transport. However, significant challenges remain in terms of their noise and vibration, which can affect both passenger comfort and the quality of life for communities near railway lines. The wheel or rail interface, characterized by the surface roughness, plays a crucial role in these phenomena.

Research into railway noise, vibration, and wheel/rail roughness is essential for the sustainable development of railway systems. 

The primary focus of track design is often on isolating ground vibration rather than addressing rolling noise, interior noise within railway vehicles or wheel or rail wear issues. In practice, there is often a trade-off required between these various phenomena. By understanding the underlying mechanisms and developing effective mitigation strategies, it will be possible to enhance the comfort of passengers, protect the environment, and extend the lifespan of both railway vehicles and infrastructure.

You will develop appropriate numerical models and conduct measurements in our laboratories as well as in the field. The results of this project are expected to contribute to the development of innovative acoustic design methods for the railway system and to provide solutions to control the noise levels during railway operation.