Coventry University Featured PhD Programmes
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Catalytic upgrading of C1 compounds

Department of Chemical Engineering

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Dr C Hammond No more applications being accepted Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project


C1 compounds such as CO2 and CH4 are increasingly important building blocks for the chemical industry. Yet, methods of converting these abundant compounds into useful chemicals and fuels are hampered by several practical, technical, and economic challenges. Catalytic science is at the forefront of the chemical industry, responsible for the production of over 90 % of industrial compounds. Heterogeneous catalysts offer several practical advantages, and the development of new heterogeneous catalysts and catalytic processes represents a key area of contemporary research.

Outline of PhD

A focal point of our team’s research is functional group modification, including selective oxidation, hydrogenation and halogenation, with heterogeneous catalysts. In this respect, our team is seeking a talented PhD student to contribute to our efforts, particularly with respect to the catalytic conversion of C1 compounds. Several research challenges and projects will be explored during the PhD, including

• (Photo)Catalytic valorisation of CO2
• Selective CH4 oxidation, and
• Catalytic halogenation of alkanes.

A variety of catalytic systems and heterogeneous materials will be investigated, and detailed project descriptions and planning will be undertaken directly with the successful candidate.

The project will entail a wide range of methods, including catalyst production, catalytic testing (batch, continuous flow), analytical studies, and in situ spectroscopy. The primary aims will be to develop new ways to upgrade C1 compounds to valuable chemicals and fuels. Opportunities for industrial and international collaboration are available on this project.

Candidate description

We are seeking exceptionally talented and motivated students to join our young, ambitious research team. Students should hold – or expect to obtain – a first class, or upper second class, honours degree (or equivalent) in chemistry, chemical engineering, material science, or a related subject. Previous knowledge of catalysis, chemical reaction engineering and inorganic materials chemistry is useful but is not a requirement.

Application procedure

Candidates should send a CV and a personal statement directly to Ceri Hammond ([Email Address Removed]). The personal statement should include the rational for applying for the position, a summary of previous research experience, and an overview of their suitability for the position.

Funding Notes

Our team has two fully-funded, 42 month PhD studentships available. These studentships are available to UK/EU students and international students. We anticipate students commencing their PhD studies between July 2020 and January 2021.
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