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Novel arene transformations through nucleophilic dearomatization


Project Description

Enthusiastic graduates are invited to apply for a 42-month PhD studentship available at the Department of Chemistry, University of Liverpool, UK, from July 1, 2019. The studentship covers tuition fees and stipend.

Project
This PhD program will focus on designing novel synthetically useful arene ring expansion reactions. The envisioned approach will rely on a selective dearomatization with stable nucleophilic reagents as a key step and would address the limitations of known ring expansion methods based on the use of highly reactive and unselective carbenes and nitrenes. In particular, the approach will probe main-group catalysts and will compliment our recently discovered method for arene C-C bond activation based on iridium complexes (Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2017, 56, 3266). The utility of a modern photocatalytic approach using well-defined dual-function photocatalysts (Chem. Comm. 2018, 9450; Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2018, 57, 12785) will also be explored.

During work on the project, the candidate will receive extensive training in organic and organometallic synthesis using Schlenk and glovebox techniques and will have hands-on experience in application of modern analytical methods (NMR, MS, GC/MS and HPLC). The knowledge and skills developed will provide the candidate with a solid foundation for his/her future academic or industrial career in organic chemistry and catalysis.

Requirements and eligibility
We are looking for creative and highly motivated graduates with Master’s degree in chemistry (1/2.1 class or equivalent qualification). Excellent experimental skills and knowledge of organic chemistry are required; a background in catalysis would be an advantage.
Due to funding restrictions this fully funded position is open for UK citizens only.

Funding Notes

The award will pay full tuition fees and a maintenance grant for 3.5 years (currently £14,777 p.a.) and it is anticipated that the successful candidate will start in July 2019. Applications from candidates meeting the eligibility requirements of the EPSRC are welcome – please refer to the EPSRC website.

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