Exeter Cohort 5 student William Addison-Atkinson’s research visit destination was Galicia in north-west Spain. Will was based at the University of A Coruña from September-November 2022, where he was hosted by Professor José Anta Álvarez in the Centre for Technological Innovations in Construction and Civil Engineering.

Will’s PhD research focuses on “quantifying health risks from E. coli after sewer exceedance”. The primary aim of his research visit was to carry out numerical modelling of an urban drainage system – and all his visit objectives were met. Will built his numerical model, carried out simulations and validated his results against a dataset collected in the water laboratory. His model successfully replicated gully pot discharges for all non-uniform sediment classes.

Will appreciated access to the University of A Coruña’s “amazing” laboratories and facilities. He gained an understanding of how sediments affect urban drainage systems and is writing a paper. He will now use and refine the knowledge he gained in Spain to model a UK case study.





Physical models in the University of A A Coruña laboratories (all photos courtesy of William Addison-Atkinson)


Will assesses that both Exeter and A Coruña universities benefited from the visit, which strengthened and widened previous links between the two institutions. Further collaborations are envisaged. Will also gained personally from his time in Galicia, learning a lot about local culture, Spain and the Spanish language. One highlight from his free time was watching a football match at Deportivo de La Coruña’s Estadio Riazor against Galician rivals Pontevedra CF.