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TEACHING

The primary objective of the PhD program is to acquire visions and skills to carry out highly qualified research activities in the field of structural and environmental monitoring and management. This requires i) knowledge on civil, chemical, material and environmental engineering to understand models as well as their evolutionary key indicators and also ii) knowledge of the key enabling technologies offered by the information engineering, with in particular the new paradigms for the implementation of systems based on sensors miniaturization, wireless connectivity and Web of Things. Students from civil and environmental engineering will receive specific training on information engineering as detailed in ii) and vice versa those students coming from the fields of information engineering will receive main training on point i), with the objective of promoting a multidisciplinary competence to the PhD students as well as to improve the development of their soft skills.

The scientific activity of each PhD student is configured as theoretical and experimental investigation and development of a research topic relevant tot the context of the selected monitoring and management area. Joint research is facilitated with other SEHM2 students as well as at other international and qualified universities, research centers and industries. A thorough understanding of the bibliographic reference (i) is a necessary condition for the development of the PhD research, moreover (ii) the PhD thesis has to produce the results of a comprehensive and original numerical and experimental activity about the investigated processes.

To perform their experimental activity, SEHM2 PhD students benefit from the following  training and research labs:

  • SHM Lab, equipped with electronic systems and wireless sensor networks prototypes, anti-vibration table; static and dynamic testing facilities;
  • ARES, dedicated to sensor modeling and characterization, and equipped with cad stations, probe stations, climatic chamber, and a profilometer for precise surface topography analysis of ICs;
  • LYRAS dedicated to the design of analog circuits, sensor interfaces and nanopower devices;
  • MARS, dedicated to research on interoperability of embedded systems, Internet of Things, Web of Things and data analytics
  • LAMC (Computational Mechanics Laboratory of the DICAM Department): advanced computing systems and software packages.

Detail on the labs and their location is in the LABS section.
The access to HPC resources will be obtained through the participation to the competitive calls published by CINECA (e.g. PRACE calls). For research and development issues in collaboration with companies/industries partnerships are possible. The training usually occupies 40% of the time and is focused primarily (but not exclusively) in the first year whereas the remaining time is mainly devoted to research, which is mainly concentrated in three semesters, from the third to fifth. The last six months are mainly focused dissemination activities and the final paper preparation.

The planned training activities are dedicated to the acquisition of fundamental knowledge in the fields characterizing the PhD program. This is achieved participating to seminars and specialized courses, organized by the DICAM, DEI, DISI, MAT departments and by ARCES center, as well as within the other PhD programs of the University of Bologna. Of particular interest will be the seminars organized at national level by research organizations and associations working in the field of monitoring and prevention (eg. INAIL, AIPnD, etc.). The participation in national and international conferences is strongly suggested. The training courses are calibrated for each student in relation to the previous career of studies and, as anticipated, are aimed at providing interdisciplinary skills. Knowledge in the general areas for the PhD program such as mathematical tools for numerical modeling and signal processing, is considered basic and essential. Such knowledge will be identified by the student along with his advisor and following the indications given by the Advisory Board of the PhD program.

In particular, a training program designed to bring together the different skills of incoming graduate students, whether they are from the area of information engineering/Civil/environmental engineering, Mathematics or industrial engineering, is foreseen according to the following synthetic scheme:

yearactivities
1st
  • ECTS from Master courses and/or courses across more Doctorates   (credits will also be considered if earned abroad)*. Courses on soft skills, on humanities subjects, as well as on communication with advanced systems, will also be considered.
  • 5-8 seminars offered by researchers of excellence in European universities (by leveraging educational exchange programs like Erasmus, framework agreements, bilateral ministerial agreements).
2nd
  • ECTS from Master courses and/or courses across more Doctorates   (credits will also be considered if earned abroad)*.
  • Specific courses on the safety and monitoring of structures, infrastructures and environment, offered by the member of the Advisory Board of the PhD program as well as by renewed international experts coming from the industry or academia*.
  • 5-8 seminars.
3rd
  • 5-8 seminars.

*for a total of 18 ECTS considering the 1st and 2nd years.

Common complementary training to all doctoral students will cover European funding schemes, intellectual property and scientific writing. These courses will run within the first two years of training. 

The training of doctoral students is normally completed by a period abroad, not less than six months, at universities and/or research centers. Moreover, the students will be encouraged to join the international projects participated by their supervisors. Examples of currently running projects are: CONNECT, RIA, ECSEL Call 2016, Building and district level monitoring and actuaton for energy efficiency (2017-20); CONVERGENCE, FLAG-ERA call, Tema: High Efficiency Sensor Networks.

The thesis is prepared in English. In addition to the final thesis, the ability of the student to carry out research activity should be documented by some presentations at international congresses as well as by some papers published in first rank international scientific journals for the research fields of PhD programme. The development of national and international patents is greatly appreciated.

The PhD program offers also some on-line free courses via the UniBook platform as:
-        Italian as a second language with e-LOCAL (Electronically Learning Other Cultures and Languages);
-        Working in Multidisciplinary Teams;
-        Introduction to Industrial Property: patents, designs, trademarks;
-        Fundamentals of financial and management accounting;
-        Others.
These non-mandatory courses contribute to the training of market leading PhD by strengthening their soft skills and increasing their overall knowledge, contributing thus to their optimal future placement.