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Research / Students / Nancy Ashburn

Nancy Ashburn - Post Graduate Project

Nancy Ashburn

I am Nancy Ashburn, a part-time research student based in Cornwall . I work as a Senior Project Engineer for a Peristaltic pump manufacturer. Before I started my PhD I completed a BSc Hons and MEng, both with the Open University. My Masters project was based around the feasibility of predictive algorithms for a peristaltic pump system, my PhD is a natural extension of this project and is entitled 'Tube failure prediction for the peristaltic pump system'.


The objective of my work is to build an understanding of the failure mechanisms of the elastomer tubes used within peristaltic pumps. To then build on this understanding to identify a failure marker to integrate into a predictive algorithm, allowing a tube failure to be predicted before it happens.


My PhD involves an understanding of materials science, process analysis, process variation, fracture analysis, stress and strain measurement and analysis, algorithm development and mechanical interaction, among others. I hope this work will contribute to improvement of peristaltic pump behaviour, which whilst offering a number of important benefits to industry due to their design, also contribute to waste due to the catastrophic nature of tube failure within their design.


I began my PhD in October 2006. Working with the Open University has offered me the opportunity to build on my previous work whilst still working directly in the manufacturing industry, where I can remain close to industrial developments.




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