Professor Simon Gill

Chair in Theoretical Mechanics

School/Department: Engineering, School of

Telephone: +44 (0)116 252 5055



My educational background is in engineering and mathematics. As a theoretician and modeller I enjoy collaborating with experimentalists to interpret the physics of different processes. These are mainly based around the coupling between mechanical deformation and material rearrangement either by diffusion or fluid flow. My teaching generally relates to structural mechanics finite element simulation and computer programming. I am a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and I was responsible for designing our school curriculum in 2012 and taking it through accreditation. I am the Director of our Centre for Doctoral Training in Innovative Metals Processing (IMPaCT).


My early research focussed on the kinetic and thermodynamics modelling how materials mainly metals and ceramics change over time at high temperatures and/or stresses. Recently I have applied my understanding of mechanics to problems in biology and geology. The latter has resulted in the award of a 16 month APEX fellowship for cross-disciplinary research in geomechanics which concludes in February 2020. The focus of this research is magma moves through the Earth’s crust to form vertical and horizontal structures such as dykes and sills respectively.


1. Gill S.P.A. "A damage model for the frictional shear failure of brittle materials in compression", Comput. Methods Appl. Mech. Engrg. 385 (2021) 114048 
2. Walker, R.J. and Gill S.P.A. "Tectonic stress controls saucer-shaped sill geometry and emplacement mechanism.", Geology (2020) 
3. Liu, F, Cocks, A.C.F, Gill S.P.A. and Tarleton E. "An improved method to model dislocation self-climb", Modelling Simul. Mater. Sci. Eng. (2020). 
4. Gill S. P. A. , Walker R. J. "The Roles of Elastic Properties, Magmatic Pressure, and Tectonic Stress in Saucer-Shaped Sill Growth", Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth (2020)
5. Campbell, C. J.; Gill, S. P. A. "An analytical model for the flat punch indentation size effect", International Journal Of Solids And Structures, 171 81-91 (2019).
6. Gill, Simon P. A.; Campbell, Christopher J. "A model for the indentation size effect in polycrystalline alloys coupling intrinsic and extrinsic length scales", Journal Of Materials Research, 34 1645-1653 (2019).
7. S.P.A. Gill, "The stability of elastically strained nanorings and the formation of quantum dot molecules", J. Mech. Phys. Solids 78, 94-109 (2015).
8. S.P.A. Gill "An energetic model for the direct formation and evolution of nanorings", Journal of Applied Physics 113 154316 (2013).
9. S.P.A. Gill, "An analytical model for the growth of quantum dots on ultra-thin substrates", Appl. Phys. Lett, 98, No. 16, 161910 (2011).
10. A.C.F. Cocks, S.P.A. Gill & J. Pan, "Modelling of microstructural evolution", Advances in Applied Mechanics, 36, pp 81-162 (1999).


I am interested in supervising research students in the following areas of modelling and simulation :
  • Microstructural evolution of materials under high temperatures and stresses
  • Mechanics of geophysical processes, especially magmatic processes
  • Mechanics of biophysical processes, especially related to the mechanics of the human lung
  • The kinetic and thermodynamic evolution of material systems


I have taught on a wide range of subjects including mechanics of structures, computer programming, design, management, computational methods and failure mechanisms. I have recently taught the following modules:
EG2111 Materials and Structures
EG3111 Finite Element Method
EG4123 Advanced Composite Mechanics
EG7101 Thermodynamics and Phase Diagrams
EG7102 Kinetics and Microstructure Modelling

Press and media

Mechanics of Materials
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