High-power electricity grid powering the city

Electronic & electrical engineeringPower Networks & Smart Grids

EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Future Power Networks & Smart Grids

Two of the leading research institutions for power systems, the University of Strathclyde and Imperial College have combined their expertise and world-class facilities to establish this Centre.

The Centre delivers a unique training and research programme, designed to produce highly-skilled engineers who’ll help realise the future low carbon smart grid. It blends together leading-edge information and communications technology solutions with radical new power systems, along with market mechanisms to support the increasing roll-out of renewable energy and the electrification of transportation and heating.

Eleven prestigious four-year PhD studentships are on offer for 2016.

During your first year, you'll study here at the University of Strathclyde and attend visits to Imperial College. Academics from both institutions support the programme.

In Year 2 you'll complete advanced Masters-level classes and move on to study for your PhD at Strathclyde or Imperial while taking part in joint events, activities and training. You'll also complete an industrial or international work placement of up to three months.

What you'll study

Year 1 combines research-led Masters-level classes delivered in short intensive units in advanced power systems and smart grids topics, with training in professional engineering skills and research methodologies. 

Masters-level classes

  • Future Power Networks & Smart Grid Paradigm
  • Control & Protection of Future Networks
  • Communications for Power Networks
  • Power Electronics for Transmission & Distribution Networks
  • Asset Management & Condition Monitoring
  • Managing Risk & Uncertainty in Grid Operation
  • Offshore & Pan-European Supergrids

You'll explore potential PhD topics through two industry-inspired mini-projects, with the final topic agreed for the start of Year 2. 

Example topics include: smart transmission networks, smart distribution, end-use issues, European Supergrid, protection of future power transmission & distribution networks and information & communications technologies for smart grids.

Year 2

  • Role of Demand & Customers in Smart Grid Operation
  • Cyber Security & Data Privacy

Student facilities

Strathclyde and Imperial College have invested heavily in facilities to test and verify key smart grid technologies and so have our industrial partners. This provides you with a unique opportunity to gain a wide range of experience of testing and prototyping new smart grid technologies.  You'll have access to an extensive range of state-of-the-art laboratories and facilities including:

  • Strathclyde’s PNDC - the UK’s only industrially supported smart grid test facility, allowing practical implementation and testing of research
  • Imperial College’s Smart Energy Lab
  • Strathclyde’s Distribution Network & Protection Laboratory (D-NAP) 
  • Imperial College’s learning Centre for Low Carbon London

Eligibility & entry requirements

Studentships are available to UK citizens who have, or are about to obtain, a first-class or upper-second Honours or MSc degree in a physical sciences or engineering discipline.

Studentships begin on 1 October each year.

These cover University tuition fees and offer a highly competitive stipend to support with living costs for the full four years. Students will also receive a travel allowance to cover conference attendance and expenses.

How to apply

To apply, send your CV, copies of academic transcripts, and a covering letter explaining why you are interested in studying within the Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) to Shirley Kirk, or phone +44 (0)141 548 5769.

Applications open annually from 1 October, with interviews conducted between January and July.


If you have any academic enquiries about the CDT, please get in touch with Professor Stephen McArthur, tel: + 44 (0)141 548 4838