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Liquid Coordination Complexes for the Synthesis of Semiconductor Nanoparticles

   Chemistry & Chemical Engineering

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  Prof M Swadzba-Kwasny, Prof John Holbrey  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

About the Project

Liquid coordination complexes (LCCs), also known as ionic liquid analogues, are a new class of liquid materials with very high metal contents, typically prepared from metal salts and simple organic donors (ligands). LCCs combine all the advantages of ionic liquids (liquidus range of >200 °C, good conductivity and impressive solvating properties) with much lower price, high metal content and versatility in terms of metal coordination. In this project, new LCCs will be developed and investigated as precursors for the ionothermal synthesis of III/V semiconductor nanoparticles, applicable for solar energy conversion.L

The student will acquire a very broad set of skills in inorganic and materials chemistry: working with air-sensitive materials (Schlenk line and glovebox), ionothermal synthesis (microwave reactor and microfluidic reactor), as well as characterisation of liquid coordination complexes (Raman and multinuclear NMR spectroscopy). In collaboration with the school of Maths and Physics, the student will have access to a unique in operando TEM liquid cell, where the nanoparticle formation can be studied in situ. These in-house techniques will be complemented by EXAFS studies at Diamond Light Source.


  • Due to funding restrictions, the position is only available for UK-resident candidates.
  • Candidates must have, or expect to obtain, a 2:1 or first-class degree in an Engineering or Physical Sciences related discipline. 
  • Full eligibility information can be viewed via
  • Candidates must be available to start the post by October 2022.

The project’s funding will cover the tuition fees and a tax-free stipend of approximately £15,285 per annum for up to 3 years.

Closing date

Friday 25th February 2022.

How to Apply

Applications must be submitted online via the University's Postgraduate Application Portal.

More Information

For more information please contact: Prof Gosia Swadzba-Kwasny ([Email Address Removed]) or Prof John Holbrey ([Email Address Removed]).

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