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Postdoc on hydrogen-assisted fracture at Imperial College London

Emilio Martínez Pañeda's picture

The Mechanics of Infrastructure Materials research group is looking to hire a Postdoctoral Research Associate (PDRA) to work on hydrogen embrittlement modelling. The postdoc will be based at Imperial College London and supervised by Dr Emilio Martínez-Pañeda. Salary: £43,093 – £50,834. The PDRA will have access to state-of-the-art HPC facilities and will also have the opportunity to (co-)supervise PhD and MSc Theses. Deadline: February 9, 2023. For more details and submission of applications check:



Applications are encouraged for a Research Associate position to work on the prediction of hydrogen-assisted failures using computational methods, on the project titled “Simulation-based assessment of the interplay between hydrogen, defects and plastic straining,” funded by Shell. This role will work under the supervision of Dr Emilio Martínez-Pañeda and be based in the Mechanics of Infrastructure Materials research group.

Hydrogen embrittlement is arguably the biggest threat to the deployment of a hydrogen energy infrastructure and the cause of numerous structural integrity problems in the transport, defence, marine and construction sectors. When exposed to hydrogen, metallic materials exhibit a significant drop in ductility and fracture toughness (of up to 90%). Building upon recent developments in multi-physics modelling and computational fracture mechanics (e.g., phase field), there is an opportunity now to deliver predictions over technologically-relevant scales and map safe regimes of operation.

You will have access to HPC facilities and codes and will also have the opportunity to (co)-supervise PhD and MSc Theses. The initial term will be one year., with the possibility of extension based on funding availability and performance. The starting date is relatively flexible, with a preference for the period April-June 2023.

Duties and responsibilities

This role will be responsible for conducting finite element analyses to predict the failure of materials and components due to hydrogen assisted cracking. You will be required to have (or develop) a sound understanding of fracture mechanics and combine sophisticated calculations with first-order insight from sound analytical methods. The work will involve use of COMSOL or ABAQUS but it will also be possible to utilise in-house or open-source codes. You will be expected to address both fundamental and applied problems, and to take part in collaborative work including the activities of the research group, as well as to submit publications to reputed journals and liaise with academic collaborators and sponsors.


Essential requirements

  • PhD in engineering, mathematics, physics, materials science, or other closely-related fields
  • Experience in numerical analysis
  • Ability to carry out finite element analysis
  • Ability to conduct a detailed review of recent literature
  • Willingness to work as part of a team and to be open-minded and cooperative


Further information

For informal enquiries about the post please contact Dr Emilio Martínez-Pañeda e.martinez-paneda AT

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