Department of Mechanical Engineering

Sam Akehurst

Contact details

Room: 8E 3.6
Tel: +44 (0) 1225 383312

Professor Sam Akehurst

BEng(Hons) CEng PhD MIMechE


Professor Akehurst is a Porfessor in Automotive Engineering. His research focuses on the performance of future powertrain system with respect to CO2 reduction. His current research portfolio includes a range of industrial collaborative projects in advanced Diesel and Gasoline engine technology and Continuously Variable Transmissions (CVTs).


Professor Akehurst’s research interests are centred on automotive engine and powertrain performance and development, particularly with respect to reducing vehicle fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. His research primarily focuses on two fields, advanced transmissions and future automotive Diesel/Petrol engines.

Professor Akehurst’s research is a mixture of fundamental and applied research combining both modern state of the art computer simulation tools and the latest approaches to experimentation using the world leading automotive research facilities that have been developed at the University of Bath in the Powertrain and Vehicle Research Centre.

Porfessor Akehurst's current research projects include:

  • Ultraboost, a £5.2M programme funded by the Technology Strategy Board (TSB) and led by Jaguar LandRover to develop a next generation 60% downsized 2.0L petrol engine that achieves the same performance characteristics of Jaguar’s current 5.0L V8 engine, while delivering a 35% reduction in vehicle CO2 emissions. Project partners include Lotus Engineering, Shell, GE-Precision, Imperial College and Leeds University. The first prototype Ultraboost engine is now running in the PVRC facilities.
  • TurboCentre, a knowledge transfer project funded through the Bath KTA and supported by Ford Motor Company, Jaguar LandRover and Cummins Turbo Technologies to transfer expertise in turbocharger evaluation and simulation to the industrial partners. Total funding (£800k)
  • Ford Motor Company, a knowledge transfer project funded through the Bath KTA and supported by Ford Motor Company, to imbed knowledge in high accuracy CO2 measurement techniques at Ford’s European R&D centre in Dunton, Essex.
  • Ashwoods Automotive, a knowledge transfer project funded through the Bath KTA and supported by Ashwoods, to improve the powertrain development techniques employed by the company and deliver an improved CO2 reduction in their next generation hybrid powertrain.
  • The application of CVT technology to variable speed supercharger drives and hybrid vehicle technology. Various programmes either funded internally (EPSRC studentships) or with Orbital Traction USA.

Teaching units

  • Solid Mechanics
  • Vehicle Engineering


Read publications by Sam Akehurst