This project is now closed. The details on this page are for information only.

Applications are invited for a fully-funded 4-year PhD to commence in October 2019. 

The project will be based in the Department of Sport and Exercise Science  and will be supervised by Dr Jo Corbett, Professor Mike Tipton and Dr Joe Costello

The four-year project is funded by the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl), an executive agency of the UK Ministry of Defence. Please note, funding for this PhD project is currently subject to confirmation of contract.

Successful applicants will receive a bursary to cover tuition fees at the UK/EU rate for four years, an annual stipend (£15,009 for 2019/2020), and funds to cover required travel and laboratory research expenses.

The work on this project will:

  • Develop and refine a novel heat acclimation intervention that builds from preliminary work undertaken at the University of Portsmouth
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of this model compared to traditional heat acclimation interventions
  • Assess the physiological and biochemical adaptations associated with this novel heat acclimation intervention
  • Be based in the department’s world leading Extreme Environments Laboratory

High environmental temperatures impair work capacity and increase heat illness risk. However, repeated exposure to heat elicits a range of adaptations which reduce heat illness risk and increase work capacity in the heat (acclimation). During this research project you will build upon preliminary work undertaken at the University of Portsmouth and conduct a series of studies refining and evaluating a novel approach for the heat acclimation of humans. This research will employ an array of whole body and biochemical research techniques to examine and evaluate the range of physiological adaptations and performance changes following the intervention.

The research work will primarily take place in the Extreme Environments Laboratory at the University of Portsmouth, using our specialised climatic chambers. These can control extremes of temperature, humidity and altitude. 

The Extreme Environment Laboratory enjoys a world leading reputation for their work examining the physiological, pathophysiological and psychological responses to adverse environments and the selection, preparation and protection of those who enter such environments. 

Some work and additional analyses is also likely to take place at other academic and non-academic institutions within the UK.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

You'll need a good first degree from an internationally recognised university (minimum second class or equivalent, depending on your chosen course) or a Master’s degree in an appropriate subject.

You'll have to be a UK national to be eligible to apply – and will also need to apply for and receive relevant security clearance.

An interest in environmental physiology and experience of laboratory work with human volunteers is desirable

How to Apply

We’d encourage you to contact Dr Jo Corbett ( to discuss your interest before you apply, quoting the project code.

When you are ready to apply, you can use our online application form and select ‘Sports Science’ as the subject area. Make sure you submit a personal statement, proof of your degrees and grades, details of two referees, and an up-to-date CV.  Our ‘How to Apply’ page offers further guidance on the PhD application process.

Please note, to be considered for this funded PhD opportunity you must quote project code SPES4970619 when applying.

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