To improve the performance of a wide range of liquid-formulated products – such as paints, coatings, inks, and adhesives – it is key to tune the distribution of the different ingredients in their final dried configuration.
We have made significant advances in understanding the assembly process that takes place during drying, but the complexity of the formulations used (up to 20 ingredients) has limited our ability to optimise full formulations based on science rather than trial and error approaches.
Here is where artificial intelligence (AI) can make a difference. AI has vast potential to serve as a predictive tool to guide materials design, reducing the number of experiments needed to optimise a certain formulation while introducing evidence-based biases.
In this project, you will develop and implement artificial intelligence methods which will guide your own experiments to achieve the final coating properties desired. You will perform advanced coatings characterisation (e.g. atomic force and fluorescence microscopy, solvent-relaxation NMR) as well as develop Bayesian optimisation and image analysis methods. Therefore, the successful completion of this PhD project will provide you with excellent career prospects both in academia and industry.
This PhD position is integrated within a large UKRI-funded project on soft materials within a world-class research environment and will be held in the research group of Dr Ignacio Martin-Fabiani at the Department of Materials, Loughborough University. You will work as part of a broader team including Dr Diwei Zou’s group in the Department of Mathematics and be included in a dynamic and supportive environment. This project will offer you the possibility of collaborating with internationally leading academic and industrial project partners.
Please see the Martin-Fabiana Group website for further details about the group including our research interests, publications and group members.
Primary supervisor: Ignacio Martin-Fabiani
Secondary supervisor: Diwei Zhou
Entry requirements for United Kingdom
Applicants should have or expect to achieve, at least a 2:1 Honours degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject. Experience with programming (e.g. Matlab/Python) is required.
English language requirements
Applicants must meet the minimum English language requirements. Further details are available on the International website.
Find out more about research degree funding
How to apply
All applications should be made online and must include a research proposal. Under the programme name, select 'Materials'. Please quote the advertised reference number AACME-23-018 in your application.
To avoid delays in processing your application, please ensure that you submit the minimum supporting documents.