Corrosion Resistance of Super Duplex Stainless Steels - The Influence of copper and tungsten addition on the passivity and pitting corrosion resistance

Key Information

Supervisors: Prof G Williams and Mr R Rice.

Super Duplex Stainless Steels offer an appealing combination of properties, providing higher levels of strength and corrosion resistance than more heavily-alloyed (and expensive) alternatives.  

Langley Alloys developed the first super duplex alloy, Ferralium 255 (S32550) in 1967, which has been joined subsequently by S32760 (developed by Mather & Platt) and S32750 (developed by Sandvik). Although all are based on a 25% chromium composition there are subtle variations – predominantly differences in Cu and W, claimed to influence pitting corrosion resistance.

The influence of both Cu and W additions has been previously studied, with sometimes conflicting results by different groups, although the choice of electrolyte/environmental conditions can affect results.

The Research Engineer:

  • Provide insight into the passivation phenomenon from Copper and Tungsten additions in Super Duplex Stainless Steels.
  • Identify conditions under which chosen alloy(s) provide enhanced performance.
  • Seek to identify optimum alloy additions based upon insight gained of passivation phenomenon.

Swansea university is a top 30 UK institution for research excellence (Research Excellence Framework 2014) and has been named Welsh University of the Year 2017 by The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide.

The Materials and Manufacturing Academy (M2A) in the College of Engineering is a Swansea University initiative which provides postgraduate research training in partnership with industry; providing access to world-class laboratories and a wealth of academic and industry expertise. The M2A is committed to delivering high quality collaborative research opportunities within an inclusive environment, funded by the Welsh European Funding Office (WEFO), the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), Swansea University and Industry partners. 

Research Engineers may participate in our career mentoring system, offering opportunities to engage with M2A alumni and other senior staff from across the University.  

The Athena SWAN charter recognises work undertaken by institutions to advance gender equality. The College of Engineering is an Athena SWAN bronze award holder and is committee to addressing unequal gender representation.

Applications from women are particularly welcomed. As a positive action to address gender imbalance, female undergraduates considering a career in research are invited to join our two-day laboratory taster session and learn about a typical day in the life of a research engineer.

Sponsoring Company Langley Alloys Ltd.
Company Website Eligibility

We welcome applications from candidates with an Engineering or Physical Science degree (minimum level 2:1), or a combination of degree and equivalent relevant experience to the same level to join the M2A community of research engineers.


To be eligible for WEFO funding, applicants should:

  • Be a UK or EU citizen (eligible for home tuition fees at Swansea University) and have the right to work in Wales at the end of their studies.
  • Be resident within West Wales and the Valleys at the time of enrolment and for the duration of the candidature.
  • Must not be financially able to participate in study for a postgraduate research degree without the award of this funding.

Full fees at Home/EU rate for a period of one academic year.

Maintenance stipend of £12500 per annum for a period of one year.

Closing Date 15 March 2019

Start Date October 2019

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Informal enquiries about this studentship are welcome and may be directed by email to: M2A@swansea.ac.uk