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Microstructure in molecular framework alloys

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Friday, January 31, 2020
  • Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

We seek to recruit a highly motivated and talented PhD student in the School of Chemistry at the University of Birmingham within the research group of Dr Hamish H-M Yeung. The successful candidate will be part of a multidisciplinary effort aimed at revealing new understanding across the formation, organisation and response of matter.

Molecular framework materials have underpinned several recent advances in the fields of sensing and separations, ferroelectrics and solar energy conversion. These chemically-diverse materials can be synthesized under relatively mild conditions, which allow access to a wealth of phases and incorporation of different component mixtures in a single crystallographic “alloy”. Mixing different components can affect the physical properties of materials in radically different ways, depending on the homogeneity of the resulting phase.

This project will investigate the role of chemistry in the formation, structure and properties of molecular framework alloys.[1] It seeks to understand how different framework components can be manipulated by synthetic parameters to control structure on a variety of length scales, leading to fine-tuning of physical behaviour.[2]

The student will acquire skills in laboratory synthesis and crystallography, and a range of materials characterization techniques. The multidisciplinary nature of the project means that they will gain exposure to several scientific areas through collaborations within and beyond the School of Chemistry, including central scientific facilities, such as Diamond Light Source, the UK’s national synchrotron.

Funding Notes

Candidates should have or be about to complete a Masters degree in Chemistry, Materials Science or similar subject. They are expected to have interests in one or more areas out of materials, microstructure, thermodynamics and crystallography. For more details please contact the primary supervisor, Dr Hamish Yeung, School of Chemistry.

We are keen to achieve a gender and diversity balance across the School and therefore welcome applicants from all backgrounds. The School of Chemistry holds an Athena SWAN Bronze Award, which recognises its work in promoting women’s careers in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine in higher education.


[1] “Compositional inhomogeneity and tuneable thermal expansion in mixed-metal ZIF-8 analogues” Adam Sapnik, Harry Geddes, Emily Reynolds, Hamish Yeung and Andrew Goodwin. Chemical Communications 2018, 54, 9651-9654. DOI: 10.1039/C8CC04172E.

[2] “Ligand-Directed Control over Crystal Structure and Solid Solution Formation in Inorganic-Organic Frameworks” H. H.-M. Yeung, W. Li, P. J. Saines, T. K. J. Köster, C. P. Grey, A. K. Cheetham. Angewandte Chemie, International Edition 2013, 21, 5544-5547. DOI: 10.1002/anie.201300440.

How good is research at University of Birmingham in Chemistry?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 28.00

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

Click here to see the results for all UK universities

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