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How you can collaborate with AAPS

There are many ways you and your organisation can work with our Centre for Doctoral Training in Advanced Automotive Propulsion Systems.

Sponsor a PhD project

By collaborating with us, you'll work with doctoral students developing deep subject expertise combined with a good understanding of business.


We aim to produce graduates with the depth of knowledge and breadth of skills to lead in addressing complex challenges in the UK automotive industry. Industry involvement during their PhDs enhances our students' training with relevant industrial problems, expertise and tools. Partnering with us gives you access to our high-quality research students and supervisors with diverse expertise.

How you can get involved

If you provide 100% funding for a project, your company owns the resultant IP with licensing to the University for research purposes.

If you provide 50% funding for a project, the University owns the resultant IP with licencing to your company for exploitation.

Available funded projects

We are looking for industrial support for these AAPS PhD projects

Joint supervision

Building a supervision team that spans academia and industry is a great way to expose our PhD researchers to a wide range of expertise and experience. Working closely together helps us reach our common research goals, maximising the benefits.

Intellectual Property

We don't expect IP issues to be a barrier to any collaboration between AAPS and your company. The University has significant experience in working with industry and can be flexible in Intellectual Property arrangements and ownership.

As part of their research experience, we expect students to present to audiences both in and outside the University. If aspects of a project need to remain confidential, we can agree this before the project starts.

Other ways to get involved

Find out other ways that you can help us train the next generation of propulsion leaders.


Integrative Think Tanks (ITT)

Our Integrative Think Tanks are a focal point in our CDT's calendar and central to our goals. These 'big events' are week-long workshops that take place twice a year in January and June. CDT students in years 2 - 4, academic, industrial and partners present problems that need research solutions, with relevant lectures given by experts.

Informal interactions

We are always looking for ways for our students to interact with our network of collaborators. This can range from informal mentoring to in-depth technical discussions that may lead to on-going links around shared interests.

Guest lectures

We are enhancing our training with a programme of guest lectures to complement the taught elements of our CDT course. Delivering a guest lecture or activity is a great way to meet our students, promote your organisation and engage with our research community.

Industrial placements

During years 2 - 4, students have the opportunity to go on industrial placements and secondments to collaborators in the UK and worldwide. Employing one of our students allows you to work closely with them on problems relevant to your company. It also builds upon your organisation's links with the University.

Academic secondments

We encourage our students to go on secondment to other academic and research institutions in the UK and worldwide. This is a good opportunity to for our students to grow and share their research knowledge and build international networks.

Master classes

You could deliver short courses to our students to give insight into areas including:

  • future commercial landscapes in the mobility sector
  • digital product development processes
  • disruptive technologies and business models (such as mobility as a service and shared ownership)
  • approaches to innovation
  • identification and management of intellectual property

Our themes

Work with our theme leaders to develop research projects for your business.


Diagram showing the areas and disciplines of expertise in the AAPS CDT
Theme name Theme leader
The future of the internal combusion engine Professor James Turner
Driver and user behaviour Dr Ian Walker
Next generation electric propulsion Professor Peter Wilson
Responsible research an innovation along the Road-to-Zero Professor Marcelle McManus
Real-world emissions and driving behaviour Dr Richard Burke
Digital systems integration and optimisation Professor Sam Akehurst
Applications of mathematics in automotive propulsion Professor Chris Budd
Gas purification: emissions control in propulsion systems Professor Semali Perera
Alternative liquid fuel synthesis and testing Professor Chris Chuck

Our industry partners

We work with a range of established and well-known industry partners. Work with us and join our regarded network.


Interested in collaborating with us, or finding out more

Get in touch