LightForm students attend the 13th International Student Conference in Metallic Materials

Patrick Curran and Laura González, from our 2020 Cohort, reflect on this years' International Student Conference in Metallic Materials, hosted by Dublin City University.

Dermot at International Student Conference 2022

The Advanced Metallic Systems Centre for Doctoral Training's [AMS CDT] 13th Annual International Student Conference was held at the Dublin City University on the 11th - 12th July 2022. The aim of this conference is to provide postgraduate students and young professional researchers with an opportunity to present their work in a supportive environment and encourage them to establish links with other students, academics, and professionals. More than 100 students from the Universities of Sheffield, Manchester, Dublin City University, University College Dublin, and many other institutions, such as Liverpool John Moores University, attended.

The student talks covered a wide range of topics, including additive manufacturing, soldering, grain growth, corrosion, and many more. Ten of our LightForm students presented their research on texture development and the effect of texture on mechanical properties. Furthermore, there were some invited speakers from The University of Warwick, The University of Nottingham, Maynooth University, and the company, Fort Wayne Metals. Their keynotes were particularly interesting, covering trending topics as machine learning, industry 4.0, sustainability in metallurgy, and additive manufacturing. 

This has been a useful and enjoyable experience, which allowed students to present their work in a low-pressure environment. This helps to build the student’s confidence with presenting and public speaking, which is an important skill in academia and in industry. Besides, the wide range of topic helped students to understand how metallic components behave in many situations, as after their PhD or EngD the focus of their work is likely to change. This conference has gone a long way to supporting students to enter into different applications of metallic systems.

After the talks, we attended a traditional Irish dinner and dance, which allowed everyone at the conference the chance to discuss their projects in more detail and at a more personal level, helping to build strong networks. These networks are very helpful, as they will be needed to support students in a technical and pastoral manor.

Photograph of all the Cohorts 2018 - 2021 together at Dublin City University

After the conference finished, there were 2.5 days of workshops, mainly focussed on digital twins and industry 4.0. They gave a board understanding of manufacturing chains and processes, which suits very well with the high level of detail associated with a PhD or EngD project. These talks were given by lecturers and professors from Dublin City University and The University of Sheffield, providing the chance for students to discuss interesting topics with experts in their field, and helping to form contacts for future collaborations.

The conference was highly refreshing and really appreciated by the students, given that the Covid pandemic forced the last two years online. The students enjoyed attending an international conference (some for the first time), going to the botanical gardens, sampling the local food and drinks, and chatting and catching up after a long time apart. We would like to extend our thanks and gratitude to Sharon, Joan, Russell, the AMS CDT staff, and Dublin City University for organising the conference.

We are all looking forward to the conference next year!

Written by Patrick Curran and Laura González. 

Original article can be viewed here.

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