Postgraduate students

Vinay Shekhar

PhD Student

: +27 21 650 5341





Vinay obtained his secondary school education from Legae Academy in Gaborone, Botswana. He got 4 A's in Cambridge A-levels from the same school. Vinay graduated with a first-class honours degree in Electro-Mechanical Engineering from the University of Cape Town in 2012. During his undergraduate studies Vinay won several class medals. The most notable of these were that he was the best mechanical engineering student in his second year of study and the best electro-mechanical engineering student in his third and final years of study. He also won a City of Cape Town Corporation Medal in 2012 for being the best electro-mechanical engineering student in 2012.


Vinay successfully completed a final year project at BISRU, which involved the development of a rock analogue. The purpose of the project was to develop a device that could replicate the characteristics of the rock when impacted by a percussive rock drill. The work involved using the Split Hopkinson Pressure Bar (SHPB) to simulate the impact of the rock drill. A chamber filled with water was then used to produce the required strain signals.


In 2013, Vinay decided to continue his studies at the University of Cape Town, with BISRU and registered for a Masters degree in Mechanical Engineering. During 2013 he successfully completed coursework in finite elements and continuum mechanics. For his MSc, Vinay will be developing a robust finite element model of V-plates. This model will then be used to investigate the effect of the bend radius at the "V"-tip on the impulse transferred and mid-point deflection. The model will also be used to investigate whether the different mounting layouts have an impact on these properties. The research will involve some material characterisation, experiments to use for convergence studies as well as experimental validation once the model is completed. For future research the model can be expanded to consider composite materials as well as damage failure criterion.