World Rugby, Sports Labs & Cardiff University in Joint Research

Max MacPharlane

Max MacPharlane

On 1 July, Sports Labs is kicked off its joint collaboration with World Rugby and Cardiff University, beginning with a PhD study focused on investigating skin friction on artificial surfaces. After a competitive round of interviews, Max MacPharlane was selected based on his high level of sporting experience combined with a strong academic capability.

Max graduated with a Merit in Biomedical Engineering from Strathclyde University and recently attended a conference in Udine, Italy to learn more about skin tribology in preparation for his PhD start.

The first step of the project will include an investigation into causation factors for skin injuries within rugby. We expect this to develop quickly to a point where Sports Labs can begin its work creating an apparatus to mimic injurious activities on artificial turf. Our goal is to produce a functional apparatus within year one.

He is also a passionate rugby union internationalist, Scotland U18 and regularly plays No.12 for his local club, GHA and the University 1st XV. His love of the sport and a deep understanding of the need for this research alongside his academic achievements so far are a winning combination and we’re really excited to begin working with him.