Newton International Fellow joins Acoustics & Audio Group

Dr Michele Ducceschi has been awarded a Newton International Fellowship from the Royal Society and British Academy to join Edinburgh Acoustics & Audio Group

The Newton Fellowship is designed to bring the world’s finest international scholars to the UK to undertake postdoctoral work. Approximately 40 such awards are made annually.

Dr Ducceschi's project is concerned with fine-grained physical modelling of the guitar for sound synthesis applications, and he will be affiliated with the NESS project, which is a joint grouping between the Acoustics & Audio Group and EPCC, the supercomputing centre based in the University of Edinburgh. 

He is currently at the École Nationale Supérieure de Techniques Avancées, in Palaiseau, France, and was formerly a PhD student at the École Polytechnique, after receiving his MSc in Acoustics and Music Technology at the University of Edinburgh in 2010.

Dr Ducceschi des​cribes his work below.

Numerical simulations and sound synthesis

My previous research at the École Nationale Supérieure de Techniques Avancées, funded by École Polytechnique in Palaiseau, France, was focused mainly on numerical simulations of nonlinear vibrating plates. Such systems are extremely appealing because they display complex dynamical phenomena despite a relatively simple geometry and a compact mathematical formulation. Numerical simulations allowed me to investigate statistical properties of the energy cascade (within the larger framework of wave turbulence, see figure below) and also to synthesise the sound of gong-like instruments.

This approach to sound synthesis (ie description of an instrument through mathematical equations and design of a numerical solver) is generically known as physical modelling, and it is the core of my two-year postdoctoral position at the University of Edinburgh: my project here is concerned with physical modelling of the guitar.

"I am delighted and grateful to be able to join these groups thanks to a Newton International Fellowship, funded by the Royal Society and the British Academy. Securing such Fellowship is a major achievement for me, as it will help me build a long and fruitful academic relationship with the University of Edinburgh and, in particular, the Acoustics & Audio group and EPCC. Because of the high academic standards of such institutions, I have a unique opportunity to be part of a diverse learning community, which will help in expanding my perspectives and grow in vision and stature."
Dr Michele Ducceschi

The Newton International Fellowship scheme

The Newton International Fellowship scheme selects the very best early stage post-doctoral researchers from all over the world, and offers support for two years at UK research institutions. The long-term aim of the scheme is to build a global pool of research leaders and encourage long-term international collaboration with the UK.

The Fellowships cover the broad range of physical, natural and social sciences and the humanities. They provide grants of £24,000 per annum to cover subsistence and up to £8,000 per annum to cover research expenses, plus a one-off relocation allowance of up to £2,000. In addition, Newton Fellows may be eligible for follow-up funding of up to £6,000 per annum for up to 10 years following the completion of the Fellowship.

The next round for applications to the Newton International Fellowship scheme opens on 7th January 2015, and closes on 25th February 2015. Final results will be announced in August 2015.