A PhD position is available in the fields of solid state physics/chemistry. This project is in competition with other projects offered by the School of Physical Sciences for one of a number of Vice Chancellor’s PhD Studentships.
Glass-ceramic materials play pivotal roles in science and technology, where their attributes of being strong, transparent, shapeable, and having varied composition, lead to applications that range from treatment of cancer to safe storage of nuclear waste. In this project you will study the atomic structure of glass-ceramic materials which are under development for varied applications in medical treatments, optical communications, and the energy sector.
The method of x-ray absorption spectroscopy is ideally suited to probe the local atomic environment of transition metals in the solid state, especially in oxide glass-ceramics which have substantial structural disorder. You will become expert in the X-ray absorption spectroscopy which is a mature and powerful technique that is continuing to be advanced for use at forefront of solid state physics/chemistry. X-ray absorption spectroscopy will be used to uncover the arrangements of atoms in new glass-ceramics, which will enable the properties of these materials to be optimised.
You will receive full training in the theory and methods of X-ray absorption spectroscopy techniques: EXAFS and XANES. In addition a deep understanding will be gained of the structure and properties of oxide solids with important technological applications. Additional techniques utilised in the project will include diffraction and molecular dynamics modelling. The project will involve collaboration with national and overseas research groups with expertise in synthesis and property evaluation. Hence you will experience working within a network of world-leading scientists.