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Sustainable Chemicals Innovations Enabling Net Carbon Emissions (SCIENCE)

4 Fully Funded PhD studentships are available for a 2021 start as part a major new collaborative EPSRC Prosperity Partnership project between Lubrizol and the Universities of Nottingham and Warwick (UK and EU students welcome).

The project will develop a culture of embedding sustainability in chemicals and polymer manufacturing from the earliest stages of design through to industrial production and use.

The world is becoming increasingly aware of the importance of environmentally sustainable practices, not just to the their own operations, but also to society and communities. Many, including Lubrizol, view sustainability as a vital component of future growth and key for remaining competitive in a rapidly evolving global economy. This Prosperity Partnership brings together world class researchers in a collaboration to seek opportunities to decarbonise the chemical industry. This Prosperity Partnership is focused on polymer backbones, functionalisation and energy efficient production.

Successful applicants will be registered to study at Nottingham or Warwick and will benefit from joint supervision across all three partners and will be expected to spend time in all three organisations. Students will be working alongside research fellows associated with the projects and side by side with industrially based scientists focussing on sustainability in a diverse research culture with the opportunity to contribute to project design and execution. In addition, it is expected that the students will be active in outreach activities encouraging diversity in chemistry.

Four studentships will be available from October 1st 2021 as 4 year PhD places with stipend at EPSRC standard rates starting at £15,609 per year with awards increasing every year, typically with inflation. All projects will focus on the use of sustainable and renewable chemicals working towards continuous flow-chemistry, with the aim to use data-driven decision making to enhance productivity and efficiency. Projects will be largely synthetic supported by a wide range of high level analytical techniques including advanced spectroscopy and microscopy. Suitable materials will be scaled up for industrial testing for a range of market sectors to meet the global issues associated with the use of fossil-based chemistry. The four available PhD projects are below; please contact the lead academic for further details and for clarification on eligibility:

Atom Efficient Transformations and Cleaner Functionalisation (HEADS)

  1. Atom efficient routes towards olefin functionalisation (Based at Nottingham working with Peter Licence and Debbie Kays; Warwick supervisor Martin Wills).
  2. N-Functionalisation of alkenes (Based at Warwick PI Paul Wilson with Martin Wills and Patrick Unwin; Nottingham supervisor Peter Licence and Debbie Kays). P dot Wilson dot 1 at warwick dot ac dot uk

Sustainably Derived Surfactants and Dispersants (TAILS)

  1. Polymer Synthesis and Functionalisation (Based at Warwick PI David Haddleton with Sebastien Perrier; Nottingham supervisor Steve Howdle). d dot m dot haddleton at warwick dot ac dot uk
  2. LCA directed synthesis of sustainable monomers for industrial application (Based at Nottingham PI Steve Howdle with; Warwick supervisors Dave Haddleton and Seb Perrier).