Research Masters (MEngSc) in Engineering
Geophysics at UCD

Project title: Development of a fibre-optic approach for offshore site investigation
Supervision team: Shane Donohue (UCD), Alastair Godfrey and Chris Minto (Optasense)
Project advisors: Mark Coughlan (iCRAG), Mike Long (UCD), David Gunn (BGS)

Project description: Typically, there is a lack of geotechnical information available to designers of offshore foundations for marine renewable structures, which often results in conservative designs. Over recent years, fibre-optic technologies have been used for an increasing array of applications. Distributed sensing of fibre optic cables, has been shown to enable continuous, real-time measurements along the entire length of a fibre optic cable. Unlike traditional sensors, distributed sensing does not rely upon individual sensors but utilises the full length of an optical fibre as a sensing element. This project proposes to develop a methodology using distributed acoustic sensing for rapidly acquiring offshore seismic data over considerable distances, at high resolution. More specifically, the project aims to (1) assess the sensitivity of fibre optic cables for surface wave seismic data acquisition, (2) develop an appropriate data acquisition methodology, and (3) test the fibre optic methodology at well characterised onshore and offshore sites. The project also will involve a period of training with our project partner, Optasense.

Position Description: This two-year full-time Master's by research (MEngSc) position is funded through the Geohazard and Geotechnical Engineering spoke of the Irish Centre for Research in Applied Geosciences (iCRAG). The successful candidate will be registered at University College Dublin. The master's stipend is 18,500 per annum, with a contribution to EU fees of 5,500 per annum.

Candidate Experience: The candidate should have a minimum 2.1 in an honours Bachelor's degree in Geophysics, Engineering Geology or Geotechnical Engineering, or an equivalent standard from an overseas university. Some experience in ground investigation and geophysical methods would be an advantage.

Application: Please e-mail a CV (max. 2 pages) and a cover letter outlining your experience and motivation to Assoc. Prof. Shane Donohue ( The deadline for applications is the 31st January 2019 at 17.00. Intended start date is 1st April 2018.

posted: 11 January 2019     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.