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Christopher Hulme

Profile picture of Christopher Hulme

Associate Professor


Works for



About me

I am the Associate Professor of Powder Metallurgy and Rapid Solidification. I work at the Unit of Processes in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering.  I am especially interested in the physical mechanisms that take place when metal powder is atomised, from the break-up of the fluid to droplets and the solidification of the melt to form metal particles.  I am also very interested in the link between atomising conditions and the properties of the powder and the relationships between microscopic properties, such as particle size and shape to the bulk properties of the powder, such as flowability and density.

To investigate phenomena during atomisation, I consider various modelling techniques, including computational fluid dynamics, stochastic numerical modelling and thermodynamic modelling. This modelling is supported and validated using shadowgraphy to visualise gas flows, metallography to investigate the cooling and solidification behaviour of droplets and water modelling to test the breakup of liquid into droplets. I also plan to use full atomising trials to test the models and equipment should soon be available for this purpose.

Metal powder behaviour is difficult to test, as the test method can affect the observed properties. Two very important powder behaviours to understand are the flow and spreading behaviour.  I perform work to understand the factors that affect these behaviours and what test methods are most effective. I have led work to develop a new technique to measure spreading behaviour and to benchmark different flow testing techniques against each other.  These experimental investigations are supported by theoretical research and discrete element modelling.

I am also very enthusiastic about teaching, lifelong learning, public engagement and of the use of new teaching techniques to increase student interaction and learning.  I have also worked to incorporate sustainability and equality issues into my courses as core responsibilities of all metallurgists, scientists and engineers.


Degree Project in Materials and Process Design, Second Cycle (MH201X), examiner | Course web

Degree Project in Materials and Process Design, Second Cycle (MH202X), examiner | Course web

Design, Profiling Course (MH1025), teacher | Course web

Experimental Methods (MH2000), teacher | Course web

International Seminar in Material Processes (MH2450), examiner, course responsible, teacher | Course web

Materials Processes I (MH2054), examiner, teacher | Course web

Metal Powder: Production, Handling and Characterisation (MH2101), examiner, course responsible, teacher | Course web

Process Engineering (MH2039), examiner, course responsible, teacher | Course web