PhD Studentship in Development of Nanomaterial Coating and Stabilising Strategies
University of Southampton School of Engineering
United Kingdom

PhD Studentship in Development of Nanomaterial Coating and Stabilising Strategies

School of Engineering

Location:  Highfield Campus

Closing Date:  Monday 31 August 2020

Reference:  1275920DA

Supervisory Team:    Dr Xunli Zhang

Project description

Fully funded DSTL industrial PhD studentship. 

There are unmet needs to develop effective materials to absorb infra-red (IR) light, e.g., for IR signature management. With unique optoelectronic properties, nanoparticles especially in non-spherical shape have demonstrated to be spectral selective absorbers, where the electromagnetic absorption bands strongly depend on nanoparticles’ geometries. However, it is challenging to synthesise such nanoparticles with desired geometries and properties in a controllable and reproducible format, and formulate them into stable materials for large-scale production.

This project aims to develop nanocomposite coatings (paints) incorporating silver nanorods (AgNRs) to selectively absorb IR electromagnetic bands. Chemistries will first be optimised for nanoparticle formation with controllable geometries. Encapsulation of the AgNRs to form stable nanoparticles with functional groups for suitable inclusion into polymers will then be established. Together with a parallel going PhD project, the formation of nanocomposite coatings in large-scale using continuous flow reactors will be developed and evaluated as IR blockers. This project will be conducted jointly by Engineering and Chemistry through an interdisciplinary approach drawing on diverse expertise and unique infrastructure available across disciplines.

If you wish to discuss any details of the project informally, please contact Prof Xunli Zhang, Engineering, Email: XL.Zhang@soton.ac.uk, Tel: +44 (0) 2380 59 5099, or Dr Eugen Stulz, Chemistry, Email: est@soton.ac.uk, Tel: +44 (0) 2380 59 9369. Further information about the research groups can be found on ;  

Entry Requirements

A very good undergraduate degree (at least a UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent).

Closing date: applications should be received no later than 31 August 2020 for standard admissions, but later applications may be considered depending on the funds remaining in place.

Funding: full tuition fees for EU/UK students plus for UK students, an enhanced stipend of £15,285 tax-free per annum for up to 3.5 years. 

How To Apply

Applications should be made online, please select the academic session 2020-21 “PhD Eng & Env (Full time)” as the programme. Please enter Xunli Zhang under the proposed supervisor.

Applications should include

Curriculum Vitae

Two reference letters

Degree Transcripts to date

Apply online:

For further information please contact: feps-pgr-apply@soton.ac.uk 


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