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Gerald Deshais

Senior Associate
Investigator Dr Gerald Deshais

Gerald completed his PhD in Materials Science at the University of Cambridge in 1999, where he investigated the resistance of 7XXX alloys to stress corrosion cracking on behalf of Péchiney (now part of Rio Tinto Alcan). Using transmission electronic microscopy and spectroscopy, he characterised the effects of grain boundary chemistry on crack propagation and compared it with fracture mechanics models.

In 1999, Gerald’s interest in the aerospace industry led him to join Rolls-Royce Materials’ Department, working on the advancement of testing and analytical methods to predict low-cycle and high-cycle fatigue failure in titanium compressor blades. He then went on to co-ordinate a research project on the subject with 12 European partners, funded by the European Commission.

From 2002, he became involved with the design of increasingly complex aero-engine systems for Airbus and Boeing airframes. Firstly, by project managing the certification of control systems, then by leading the development of innovative transmissions and gas turbine structures.

In 2011, upon joining GE Aviation Systems, Gerald expanded his expertise into the design of novel composite wing structures for the Airbus A350-XWB aircraft. Reflecting on the importance of processes and systems engineering in the development of safety critical products, he took on a 6-sigma Black Belt role followed by senior management roles in Systems Engineering at GE Aviation’s Electrical Power Distribution division.

His work in aerospace has allowed him to gain an in- depth understanding of failure mechanisms in both mechanical and electrical systems.

Gerald joined Hawkins in October 2022 and is a Senior Associate based in our Bristol office.


Gerald is proficient in English and French.


MEng Materials & Mechanical Engineering – Institut des Sciences de l’Ingénieur de Toulon et du Var, France
PhD Stress Corrosion Cracking in Aluminium based Alloys – University of Cambridge
CEng MIMechE
A MSc in Project & Risk Management from The University of Manchester
A Black Belt Certification in Lean Six-Sigma from General Electric

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