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David is Professor of Infrastructure Geotechnics at the University of Southampton, based at the UKCRIC National Infrastructure Laboratory. He completed MEng and PhD degrees at the University of Cambridge then remained in Cambridge as a Research Fellow and then University Lecturer. In 2007 he was appointed Professor at the University of Western Australia in Perth, holding an ARC Future Fellowship (2009-2012) and then the Shell Chair of Offshore Engineering (2013-2017).
His research is primarily concerned with offshore energy facilities, ranging across cable, pipeline, foundation and anchoring systems as well as soil characterisation. He collaborates across disciplines with experts in fluid mechanics, sediment transport and fixed and floating structures, exploring the challenges of coupled problems. The real work has been done by a cohort of 25 PhD students that he has supervised, and many talented post-doctoral researchers. He has been an investigator in research projects supported by the EPSRC, ARC and the EU, with parallel support provided by industry operators, contractors and consultants.
During his PhD he co-developed an image analysis system for deformation measurement in geotechnical testing. The latest freeware incarnation of this technology – GeoPIV-RG – continues to grow in popularity for applications across civil engineering.
He was the Founding Director of the ARC Research Hub for Offshore Floating Facilities (offshorehub.edu.au) and is now a Co-Director of the EPSRC Supergen Offshore Renewable Energy Hub (supergen-ore.net). He is active in engineering practice, consulting for the offshore industry to support the transfer of research into practice, and he has been elected a Fellow of the ICE, the Royal Academy of Engineering and the Royal Institution of Naval Architects.
His research has led to >300 publications, which have received 9 best paper awards, including the BGA Award three times. He has authored 45 contributions to Geotechnique over the past 17 years, with the most recent publications forming the basis of the 2019 Geotechnique Lecture.
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