In order for engineered nanoparticles to be successfully applied in the real world, detailed and representative characterisation is first required. Electron microscopy is ideally suited to the nanoscale imaging and analysis of materials; the spatial resolution and availability of advanced spectroscopic techniques afford the opportunity for detailed structural and compositional investigations. However challenges are presented when the nanoparticles of interest are presented suspended in a liquid, or as part of a soft material. This project will investigate advanced electron microscopy incorporating techniques for native state (e.g. cryogenic electron microscopy) and volume (e.g. electron tomography and serial sectioning) with an aim of measuring the distribution or dispersion of nanoparticles. These techniques will be developed and applied to several systems, including Pickering emulsions and functionalised nanoparticles, both of which require detailed three dimensional native state analysis. This project will utilise advanced characterisation techniques – including a FEI Titan transmission electron microscope and FEI Helios G4 DualBeam focused ion beam scanning electron microscope. This project fits within the School of Chemical and Process Engineering’s expertise in Advanced Engineering Materials, and specifically within the Materials Characterisation research group.
The School of Chemical & Process Engineering will provide funding that covers the cost of fees and provides a maintenance matching the Research Council UK rate (£15,009 for 2019/20). Funding duration is 3.5 years.