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PhD Introduction


Doctor of Philosophy


The Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) is the highest level of study and requires a serious commitment. Graduates of the doctoral program are well positioned for careers in academia, industry, government and consulting. Students who have excellent academic backgrounds and demonstrated capability for independent study/research are encouraged to apply to the doctoral program. Students entering the doctoral program in civil and environmental engineering are expected to meet the general admission requirements of the graduate school; gain acceptance into the Department of Civil, Environmental, Aerospace, Materials Engineering; and hold a master's degree in engineering or a related field.

The Ph.D. is a research oriented degree that requires in-depth knowledge of a specific topic of study. Programs of study are highly individualized, but consist of two main components: course work and independent research. Doctoral-level research leads to fascinating discoveries and novel technologies. While exhilarating at times, a doctoral research project demands steady commitment generated by self motivation and careful planning.


Programs Offered




Hydraulic and Environmental Engineering


The subjects cover a very large area within three specific scientific disciplinary sectors (ICAR/01 - Hydraulics; ICAR/02 - Hydraulic Structures, Coastal Engineering and Hydrology; ICAR/03 - Sanitary and Environmental Engineering).


Several topics belong to these sectors, for instance the weakly compressible fluid mechanics and the corresponding engineering applications, hydrology, hydraulic structures, coastal engineering, as well as the water treatment processes (water purification and sewage treatment) and waste management. The importance of these issues is therefore extremely wide, as specified in the "Reports on the state of education in doctoral programs" edited by the CNVSU. The title of the PhD in "Hydraulic and Environmental Engineering" is equally broad, as evidenced by, among other things, the fact that similar designations, usually even more restrictive, are usual in many International PhDs (eg the PhD course named "Environmental Engineering and Water Resources" held by the Princeton University).


Materials engineering


The “materials” curriculum aims to educate specialists in the field of materials science and of their applications, with particular reference to those areas in which materials bearing specific functions or properties are requested. The learning program and the research of the students will range from theoretical-modeling aspects to the technological-applicative ones, with topics regarding the study of the chemical-physical behavior, synthesis, preparation and processing. The aimed applications include: packaging; high performing materials and composites; materials and devices for biomedical applications; active, stimuli-responsive and smart materials; materials for photovoltaic and electronic applications; materials for preserving the cultural heritage.Particular attention will be paid to determining the relationships between the final properties, the structure and the processing, with the final aim to tune the behavior of the materials, in accordance with the applicative needs, and to determine descriptive and predictive model to describe their characteristics.


Structural and geothecnical engineering

The proposed curriculum is also based on the relevant experience acquired along several cycles of the Structural Engineering doctoral course. Some of the research arguments will be developed are classic of this subject matter while others are specialistic.

Among the classic arguments we have the mechanic of solids, structures and soils, the structural dynamics, the mechanical response of reinforced concrete, steel, masonry and wood structures and the safeguard and restoration of existing structures. The specialistic arguments regard the mechanical response of composite and advanced materials, the seismic engineering, the soil-structure interaction and the health monitoring of structures.

The curriculum presents also some cross research arguments to the other curricula of the doctoral course such as the application of traditional and innovative materials to civil infrastructures, biomechanics and environmental conservation.


Transportation infrastructures engineering and geomatics

Fully coherent with the general title of the proposed PhD Course; the PhD curriculum is focused on topics mainly related to three SSDs. ICAR/04 – Roads, Railways and airport, ICAR/05 – Transportation and SSD ICAR/06 – Topography and Cartography. Within the above mentioned topics, the PhD curriculum will deal specifically with: infrastructure geometry and design, materials for the road and railways construction, methods for integrated design, safety and reliability of transportation infrastructures functioning, as well as themes related to strategic transportation planning, to circulation, and logistics of passengers and freight. Also, themes related to the field of Geomatics are of interest, such as the overall studies focused on acquisition, processing, analysis, visualization and management of earth data and that include both traditional and recent tools and techniques for land surveying (remote sensing, cartography, geographic information systems (GIS).