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Dr. Digby Symons

Dr. Digby Symons

Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering

Digby Symons is available for consultancy.

Office Phone: 01223 760502


Dr Digby Symons is a Lecturer in the Cambridge University Engineering Department and a Fellow of Peterhouse. He is affiliated to the Engineering Design Centre (EDC) and Micromechanics research groups in the Mechanics, Materials and Design Division.  Dr Symons is a Chartered Engineer and a Member of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers.

After graduation from the University of Cambridge Dr Symons was employed as a structural engineer by Buro Happold Consulting Engineers. He later moved to the Department of Engineering Science at the University of Oxford to carry out research supported by Rolls-Royce Plc.  Dr Symons was awarded a D.Phil. in 1998 for his work on composite materials.  He then returned to industry to work for Cambridge Consultants Ltd., and later Weston Medical Plc., on the design and development of medical devices before taking up a position as a University Lecturer at the end of 2002. 

Departments and Institutes

Department of Engineering:

Research Interests

The appropriate application of engineering science in the design of products. Technical areas of interest include solid, fluid and particulate mechanics. Domains of work have included centrifugal and cyclonic separators, renewable energy, timber construction, lattice materials and medical devices.


  • Oil and gas
  • Sustainability
  • Particle sizing
  • Efficiency
  • Materials

Key Publications

Bell GRA, Symons DD and Pearse JR. Mathematical model for solids transport power in a decanter centrifuge. Chemical Engineering Science, 2014, 107, 114-122

Bizard AFM, Symons DD, Fleck NA and Grimwood GC.  Design guidelines for granular particles in a conical centrifugal filter. Chemical Engineering Research and Design, 2012, 91(2), 348-360

Symons DD.  Integral methods for flow in a conical centrifuge.  Chemical Engineering Science, 2011, 66 (13), 3020-3029

Gaudern N, and Symons DD.  Comparison of theoretical and numerical buckling loads for wind turbine blade panels. Wind Engineering, 2010, 34 (2), 193-206

Symons DD, Persaud R and Stanislaus H. Slip modulus of inclined screws in timber–concrete floors.  Structures and Buildings, Timber Eng., Proc. of the I. of Civil Engs., 2010, 163 (SB4), 245-255

Symons KE and Symons DD.  Embodied energy and carbon: what structural engineers need to know.  The Structural Engineer, 5 May 2009, 87 (9), 19-23

Symons DD and Fleck NA.  The imperfection sensitivity of isotropic two-dimensional elastic lattices  Journal of Applied Mechanics, 2008, 75, 051011