Solid and Structural Mechanics

​The graduate school is organised within the Department of Mechanics and Maritime Sciences and Industrial and Materials Science (IMS)

Director of Graduate Studies: Elena Kabo (M2), Magnus Ekh (IMS)​

Syllabus

Established by the First Vice President on 2005-05-17, registration number C 2005/604.
Latest revised on 2021-06-28, registration number M2 2021-1043.
This syllabus applies to doctoral students admitted as of 2021-09-01.
Regarding older syllabus, please contact the deputy/vice head of department.

Transitional regulations:
A doctoral student admitted to an older syllabus may earn a degree in accordance with this, provided that the current Appointment regulation for doctoral programmes and current Local Qualifications Framework – third cycle qualifications are followed.

Doctoral students admitted to an older syllabus of graduate school Solid and Structural Mechanics as of 2012-12-18 can, however, change to the current syllabus by an application to the Deputy/Vice Head of Department. The change must be documented in the individual study plan.

The graduate school is regulated by the Appointment regulation for doctoral programmes and the Local Qualifications Framework for Chalmers University of Technology - third cycle qualifications and is described in the syllabus for the graduate school. In the event of any conflict between the documents, the Appointment regulation for doctoral programmes and the Local Qualifications Framework for Chalmers University of Technology - third cycle qualifications are governing. For the most recent version of all regulatory documents referenced in this syllabus, see Chalmers’s internal website.

1. Subject description

Mechanical constructions must have a verified structural integrity fulfilling the ever-increasing demands on design properties, economy and environmental footprint. Effective and optimal mechanical solutions for a sustainable future must also be integrated into highly complex technical systems. They must also be adapted to constantly changing industrial and societal demands.

The topic of Solid and Structural Mechanics contains mechanics, strength of materials and structural mechanics. Both basic and applied research is conducted within the different areas. Among the application areas railway mechanics, dynamic systems, wind power technology, mechanics of composite materials, biomechanics, manufacturing technology and structural batteries could be mentioned. The emphasis is on both theoretical and numerical modelling. This includes computational methods, but also experimental work. Basic research covers areas such as vibrations and noise, wave propagation, continuum mechanics, material modelling, fracture mechanics, fatigue, and multiscale modelling of materials. The research also involves the connection to control and monitoring systems, and often relates to operationally critical as well as safety related components and systems. Advanced numerical models for describing and predicting structural response, material behaviour and different damage phenomena are being developed. Results from laboratory and field experiments are analysed with e g statistical methods and artificial intelligence.

2. Objectives of the doctoral programme

The national objectives for third cycle degrees (licentiate and doctoral degree) and local requirements are stated in the Local Qualifications Framework for Chalmers University of Technology – third cycle qualifications.

In the doctoral education a lot of focus is put on the wide scope of the subject and its theoretical and methodological bases. The aim of the doctoral education within Solid and Structural Mechanics is to give qualifications for advanced engineering work in the field, as well as skills and competence for performing independent research in future.

3. Entry requirements

General entry requirements

To be qualified for admission in Solid and Structural Mechanics the student must have earned a degree at the second-cycle level. The orientation of the student’s degree shall also have a sufficiently close connection to the subject of the doctoral programme. Equivalent requirements apply to individuals who have taken their first degree in a country other than Sweden. The examiner, in consultation with the principal supervisor, shall assess whether the applicant has the requisite capacity to successfully complete the doctoral programme. Other requirements for general entry are regulated in Appointment regulation for doctoral programmes.

The doctoral programme in Solid and Structural mechanics is mainly theoretical in nature and requires good knowledge in mechanics, strength of materials, as well as in mathematics including numerical methods.

Relevant educational background for admission to the doctoral programme is a MSc in Applied Mechanics, Structural Mechanics, Mechanical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Engineering Physics, or similar.

Admission

Regulations regarding admission are stated in Appointment regulation for doctoral programmes.

4. Curriculum

The study programme towards a doctoral degree encompasses 240 higher education credits. The study programme towards a licentiate degree encompasses at least 120 higher education credits. One year of full-time studies equals 60 credits.

For the licentiate degree programme the credits are distributed between courses and thesis work as follows: courses at least [60] credits and thesis at least [60] credits.

For the doctoral degree programme the credits are distributed between course work and thesis work as follows: courses at least [75] credits and thesis at least [165] credits.

Courses

Courses within the graduate school include general courses that cover all doctoral programmes at Chalmers as well as courses specific for the graduate school.

General courses in Chalmers’s doctoral programmes
The general course requirements for doctoral programmes at Chalmers are regulated in Local Qualifications Framework for Chalmers University of Technology – third cycle qualifications.

Courses specific for the graduate school of Solid and Structural Mechanics
Mandatory courses
To ensure high-quality doctoral studies within Solid and Structural Mechanics, as well as to give teaching opportunities at bachelor and master levels, courses on continuum mechanics (7.5 credits), finite element analysis (7.5 credits), dynamics (7.5 credits), and mathematics (7.5 credits) should be accomplished prior to the licentiate degree.

Elective courses
The elective courses are usually intradisciplinary. Here courses from the Master Programme in Applied Mechanics and courses in applied mathematics may be included. Examples of elective doctoral courses offered by the departments where the graduate school is based are:
  • Computational nonlinear mechanics (7.5 credits)
  • Advanced fatigue and fracture analysis (7.5 credits)
  • Contact mechanics (7.5 credits)
  • Analytical mechanics and nonlinear vibrations (7.5 credits)
  • Dynamics of rigid and flexible bodies (7.5 credits)
  • Advanced material mechanics (7.5 credits)
  • Damage and fracture mechanics (7.5 credits)
  • Computational homogenization (7.5 credits)
Also, doctoral courses offered by other departments and universities may be included.

Relevant courses on the master level that a doctoral student has taken before being admitted to the graduate school can at most be credited with 30 credits. The examiner decides on which courses and which graduate education credits (or similar) that will be transferred. The minimum level of course grade is “four” (or similar) for all courses that are credited from master level education or similar.

Departmental introductory course (1.5 credits) is recommended for new doctoral students in the graduate school. The credits may be counted as Generic and Transferable Skills (GTS) credits.

For development of pedagogical competence doctoral students who are involved in teaching may get departmental support in form of a course on "Pedagogic support for new PhD students" (1.5 GTS credits).

To promote international research collaboration, a PhD-student can get 1.5 credits for an international research visit with more than four weeks duration and additional 1.5 credits if the visit results in a joint peer reviewed publication (conference or journal). For the international research visit, the doctoral student is required to apply for funding from relevant sources. The credits may be counted as GTS credits.

Licentiate thesis

A licentiate thesis shall be written in English. In exceptional cases it can be written in Swedish; in such cases it shall contain a summary in English.

The purpose of the licentiate thesis is to account for the relevant scientific results that have been attained during the thesis work and describe these in a way that is accessible outside of the scientific inner circle of researchers. A licentiate thesis can either be written as a compilation thesis or as a monograph. If the licentiate thesis is a compilation thesis it should begin with an introduction, a summarizing text, followed by the included scientific articles. The purpose of the summarizing text is to put the studies in context, and to present relevant results that for various reasons are not described within the articles.

The licentiate thesis should be of such quality that its parts (possibly after editing) can be accepted for publication in an international journal with a peer review system. The thesis must be presented at a publicly advertised seminar. An external discussion leader with expertise in research topic shall be invited to initiate discussion after the presentation.

Other regulations concerning the licentiate thesis are stated in Appointment regulation for doctoral programmes.

Doctoral thesis

A doctoral thesis shall be written in English. In exceptional cases it can be written in Swedish; in such cases it shall contain a summary in English.

The purpose of the doctoral thesis is to account for the relevant scientific results that have been attained during the thesis work and describe these in a way that is accessible outside of the scientific inner circle of researchers. A doctoral thesis can either be written as a compilation thesis or as a monograph. If the doctoral thesis is a compilation thesis it should begin with an introduction, a summarizing text, followed by the included scientific articles. The purpose of the summarizing text is to put the studies in context, and to present relevant results that for various reasons are not described within the articles.

The doctoral thesis shall comprise 3–5 papers of such quality that they can be published in an international journal with a peer review system.

Other regulations concerning the doctoral thesis are stated in Appointment regulation for doctoral programmes.

Supervision

The Appointment regulation for doctoral programmes states that for each doctoral student at least two supervisors shall be appointed. One of them shall be appointed principal supervisor. The doctoral student has the right to supervision during the studies unless the Head of Department decides otherwise.

Other regulations concerning supervision are stated in Appointment regulation for doctoral programmes.

5. Examination

After completion of a doctoral programme a doctoral degree is awarded. A licentiate degree can be an intermediate stage in a doctoral degree. If a licentiate degree is not a part of the individual study plan, a midway seminar shall be held to denote that licentiate level has been reached.

Examination, licentiate degree

For a licentiate degree to be awarded, the doctoral student must have received a grade of pass for the licentiate thesis and its presentation and must also have received a grade of pass for the other elements that are included in the programme.

Examination, doctoral degree

For a doctoral degree to be awarded, the doctoral student must have had a doctoral thesis and its defence approved and must also have passed the other elements that are included in the programme.

Other regulations regarding examination are stated in:
  • Appointment regulation for doctoral programmes
  • Local Qualifications Framework for Chalmers University of Technology – third cycle qualifications

6. Title of degree

The title of qualification is Teknologie doktorsexamen i Solid- och strukturmekanik or Filosofie doktorsexamen i Solid- och strukturmekanik. The English translation of the title of the qualification is Degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Solid and Structural Mechanics.

For a licentiate degree the title of the qualification is Teknologie licentiatexamen i Solid- och strukturmekanik or Filosofie licentiatexamen i Solid- och strukturmekanik. The English translation of the title of qualification is Degree of Licentiate of Engineering in Solid and Structural Mechanics or Degree of Licentiate of Philosophy in Solid and Structural Mechanics.

The degree is given a title corresponding to the name of the faculty within which the undergraduate degree was earned. The title is determined by the Head of Department in connection with admission.

Any decision regarding exemption from use of the defined title is made by the Head of Department. In some individual cases, it is possible to use a title that does not correspond to the name of the faculty within which the undergraduate degree was earned.

7. Additional instructions

Doctoral students in the graduate school of Solid and Structural Mechanics can belong to another graduate school (e g to interinstitutional or national graduate school).

Page manager Published: Wed 01 Sep 2021.