Forensic analysis of weathered organic coatings to understand mechanisms of degradation.

Key Information

Tata Steel Europe (TSE) is the second largest producer of pre-painted steel in Europe. To maintain this position, the organisation is constantly trying to improve the current product range, either through the development of best in class coatings for the construction industry, improved offerings in service or through added functionality. As Tata’s premium coated products can offer maintenance free warranties of up to 40 years it is essential that the performance under different climatic conditions if fully understood. 

Project Aims

The project aims of the research will be to :

Analyse materials that have been degraded through external or accelerated testing.

Use analytical techniques such as UV,  ATR FTIR and Raman spectroscopy to determine the mechanism and rates of organic coating degradation and erosion.

Understand how different climatic conditions affect the coating characteristics using through depth profile and surface analysis.

Further develop non-destructive techniques to assess performance of weathered samples,  such as colour, gloss, blister formation and creep measurement

Suitable Candidate

Suitable for a materials or chemistry student, with an interest sustainability or paint chemistry.


Sponsoring Company Tata Steel Colors

Candidates should hold an Engineering or Physical Sciences degree with a minimum classification level of 2:1 or equivalent relevant experience.

Our funders require applicants to also meet the following eligibility criteria:

  • You must be a UK or EU citizen (i.e. eligible for ‘home’ tuition fees at the University) and have the right to work in Wales at the end of your studies.
  • You must be resident in West Wales and the Valleys at the point of enrolment and throughout the duration of your studies.
  • You must not be financially able to participate without the award of grant funding.

Further information regarding eligibility criteria can be found at: http://www.materials-academy.co.uk/eligibility

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 committed to addressing unequal gender representation.


The studentship covers the full cost of UK/EU tuition fees, plus a tax free stipend of £20,000 p.a.

Closing Date 28 February 2018

Start Date October 2018

Apply Now

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