Research at the JohnstonLab in Swansea University typically covers a number of diverse fields, but is primarily focussed on characterisation of structures using X-Ray Microtomography. The group has experience investigating many varied materials, from plant and biological specimens, to dense superalloys.
We have a focus on biomimetics and bioinspiration. Using X-Ray CT to investigate the hidden internal worlds of nature, and thinking about how and why these structures formed. We then look for challenging engineering applications that could benefit from the inspiration gained from these natural architectures. Utilising 3D-printing, we can create rapid replicas or prototypes of previously hidden structures found via X-ray CT, demonstrated on an everyday object in the Gallery.
The group also researches aerospace materials, focussing on the destructive and non-destructive characterisation of abradable coatings, ceramic-matrix-composites, and nickel-based superalloys among others. Corrosion studies of zinc and steel alloys are also ongoing.
Also, expertise in applying artificial intelligence to a number of areas including manufacturing, process optimisation, creep of metals, and sports performance.
Specific strengths in X-ray computed tomography have resulted in collaborations with glaciology, tephrochronology, regenerative medicine, Egyptology, corrosion scientists, and many others.
The underlying ethos behind work at JohnstonLab is that we are passionate about interdisciplinary and collaborative research; and the excitement and energy that working with researchers from very different fields can provide.