HDR Scholarship - Smart Grid meets the Internet of Things

Applications now open

A PhD scholarship is available to initiate and conduct research on the topic 'Smart Grid meets the Internet of Things'

Project Supervisors

Dr James Brusey (Coventry University) and Prof Aman Maung Than Oo (Deakin University)

Associate Supervisors

Prof Elena Gaura (Coventry University) and Dr Ameen Gargoom (Deakin University)


Geelong Waurn Ponds Campus, Australia and Coventry University, UK

Research topic

This PhD scholarship is part of the Cotutelle arrangement between Coventry University, UK and Deakin University, Melbourne, Australia. The candidate will spend time at Deakin and Coventry, with a supervision team drawn from the two Universities. This project is offered as part of the Deakin-Coventry cotutelle program where the student is enrolled at both Deakin University and Coventry University (UK). This rewarding program offers international research experience undertaken at both institutions with a tailored program.

The recent developments and low-cost nature of wireless sensor networks (WSNs) and the Internet of Things can bring significant advantages over traditional communication technologies used in today’s electric power systems. Recently, WSNs have been widely recognized as a promising technology that can enhance various aspects of today’s electric power systems, including generation, delivery, and utilization, making them a vital component of the next generation of the electric power distribution systems (which are known as smart grids).

Unlike the traditional distribution grids, where only the transmission of energy is needed, in smart grids, both the transmission of the energy and the transmission of the information on the consumed/transmitted energy are necessary to ensure the energy efficient operation of the grids. However, the integrated and complex electric-power-system structures pose several challenges mainly associated with the reliability of WSN communications and real-time decisions based on sensors data in the distribution control in smart grid applications. Smart grid optimization strategies will be investigated and optimal sensor based data delivery systems will be designed to support distributed control and knowledge extraction.

The project’s innovations and contributions to knowledge will be evaluated through a number of demonstrator test beds in the UK and Australia. This project is part of the Research Centre for Fluid and Complex Systems (FCS). The Centre brings together over 100 leading applied mathematicians, experimentalists, theoreticians, and specialists in scientific computing to tackle the latest challenges in complex systems, with a focus on fluid flows and their measurement.

Our research benefits from an impressive and growing network of commercial, academic and government partnerships across the globe. Our unique combination of expertise and facilities from Coventry University and TÜV-NEL (NEL being the former National Engineering Laboratory), allows us to work across multiple industrial sectors to be the UK’s leading flow measurement and fluid mechanics research centre for the measurement and characterisation of complex flows.

Project aim

The aim of this project is explore the most effective solutions for using WSNs in microgrid for monitoring control, measurement and fault diagnosis. A real time implementation and prototype architecture of WSNs will be integer part of this project. The project will offer comprehensive analysis of utilizing a diverse set of communication standards and investigates the constraints and requirements such as area of coverage, type of application, bandwidth requirement, etc., within the context of the smart grid. Cyber security of using WSNs will also be considered in the investigations. The research questions are:

  • What are the current routing protocols and real time challenges of using WSNs?
  • How can WSNs implemented in smart grids to manage the produced energy in most cost effective way?
  • What are the security and reliability impacts of using WSNs in smart grids with intermittent energy sources?
  • How can WSN nodes are used for monitoring the behavior of renewable energy resources?

Important dates

Applications close 5pm, Monday 10 June 2019.


For the candidate with Deakin University as the home Institution, the scholarship is available over 3.5 years with a:

  • £15,000 Bursary plus tuition fees

Eligibility criteria

To be eligible you must:

  • be either a domestic or international candidate
  • meet Deakin's PhD entry requirements
  • be enrolling full time
  • hold a minimum of a 2:1 first degree (second class honours upper division) in a relevant discipline/subject area with a minimum 70% mark in the project element or equivalent with a minimum 70% overall module average, and/or
  • hold a Masters Degree in a relevant subject area will be considered as an equivalent. The Masters must have been attained with overall marks at 70%. In addition, the dissertation or equivalent element in the Masters must also have been attained with a mark at 70%
  • Language proficiency (IELTS overall minimum score of 7.0 with a minimum of 6.5 in each component)
  • be able to physically locate to both Coventry University (England) and Deakin University (Australia).

Please refer to the research degree entry pathways page for further information or contact Coventry University via email.

How to apply

Applicants must apply to both institutions.

Learn more about submitting a successful application on Deakin's How to apply page.


Applicants should apply via the Coventry online portal.

Contact us

For more information about this scholarship, please contact Dr James Brusey or Prof Aman Maung Than Oo

Dr James Brusey
Professor of Computer Science
Email James Brusey

Prof Aman Maung Than Oo
Head of School
Email Aman Maung Than Oo
+61 3 524 79216