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NANO Materials in Space - Determining the factors that influence metallic silver, or gold and other nanocluster nanoparticle synthesis, their shape and polydispersity


Project Description

At UWS, we are passionate about our research that focuses on resolving societally critical problems and to address some of those we have established a partnership with the International Space School Educational Trust (ISSET).

Join UWS on a true Mission Discovery to find out how advances in science and technology could benefit from, and have value added through, experimentation in space. We are offering an out of this world fully-funded PhD opportunity, co-supervised with ISSET, to collaborate with NASA and other American academic institutions to tackle challenges that we face both on Earth and in space. There’s one International Space Station working on behalf of the entire planet Earth and this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to have your research project launched out there.

Humans have only started the exploration of Space and this vast task would require crossing many frontiers in multi-disciplinary research. This is your opportunity to go where no PhD research student has gone before.

Nanoparticles have novel and diverse applications in the area of medicine, the environment, process catalysts, renewable energy medicine, space exploration, and development of new smart materials. The synthesis of nanomaterials on earth is an ongoing and highly scrutinised activity. However, the influence of “Space” is virtually unknown. This interdisciplinary research challenge would aim to determine the factors that influence metallic silver, or gold and other nanocluster nanoparticle synthesis, their shape and polydispersity. The application of new bio reducing agents, surfactants and proteins that may result in formation of stable nanoparticles at room temperature would be investigated. Analysis would involve state of the art techniques such as TEM, spectroscopic ellipsometry, neutron reflectivity, SANS, AFM among others. A number of different “nano” materials can be utilised, thus there is scope for the researcher to explore novel opportunities. However our overall direction would be, after appropriate characterisation, to develop applications in the area of antimicrobial and biomedical science.
The candidate would develop feasible nanoparticle synthesis protocols and relevant experiments on Earth and reformat them to be performed in Space, International Space Station (ISS), with launch planned for summer of 2020. This would result in a unique opportunity to determine and compare the influence of nanoparticle synthesis in the Space environment.

The research is part of a unique, high profile collaboration between UWS and scientists at , King’s College London, NASA and ISSET. The project will be based at UWS Paisley Campus, but travel would be expected for research to be undertaken with collaborators in the UK and potentially overseas. The supervision team has broad and extensive experience in materials, biomedical analysis, formulation science, as well as in the delivery and completion of successful biochemical experiments in the ISS. Candidates are expected to have a physical science degree, potentially masters, in an appropriate to area, an excellent attitude to collaborative research, attention to detail, ability to withstand a fast learning curve, good communication skills and most importantly creative enthusiasm.

Funding Notes

We are looking for enthusiastic and outstanding candidates with a degree relevant to this project, an excellent attitude to collaborative research, attention to detail, ability to withstand a fast learning curve, good communication skills and most importantly, creative enthusiasm. Creating a bridge from science on Earth to the ISS is achieved by so few people and with this fully-funded UWS PhD scholarship you could be one of them. The scholarship is available to students from the UK and EU. The studentship offers an annual stipend of £14,553 per annum for three years and payment of the tuition fees.

How good is research at University of the West of Scotland in Allied Health Professions, Dentistry, Nursing and Pharmacy?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 13.00

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

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