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Optimization of surfactant-solvent systems for adaptive lubricants


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Prof J Eastoe No more applications being accepted Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)
Bristol United Kingdom Analytical Chemistry Computational Chemistry Industrial Chemistry Inorganic Chemistry Organic Chemistry Structural Chemistry Synthetic Chemistry

About the Project

Optimization of surfactant-solvent systems for adaptive lubricants

Industry-funded PhD in Colloid and Interface Science in the School of Chemistry, University of Bristol

Bristol Supervisor: Prof. Julian Eastoe.Infineum supervisor: Prof. Peter Dowding

The physical science of lubricants already has a strong foundation, in terms of the effects of thermodynamic (temperature T and pressure P) and mechanical (shear, friction and wear) variables, however, the domain of additive chemical structure remains largely underexplored.

The aim is to uncover these missing chemical rules with new series of oil-soluble surfactants with programmed step-wise changes in their chemical architecture, and also by making systematic changes in the chemical structure of the oily solvents. The idea is to find the optimal molecular structures of both components to identify those giving the most efficient and effective self-assembly, and also to explore possibilities of tuning self-assembly properties using chemical structure as a control variable.(i.e. combining changes to both solvent and surfactant chemical structure can be used to “dial-up” properties and phase behaviour over a wide range).

Phase behaviour studies, interfacial tensiometry and small-angle neutron scattering and neutron reflection at both Rutherford Appleton Laboratories (Didcot, UK and Institute Laue Langevin (Grenoble, France will be utilised. Other facilities external to Bristol will be used at Infineum (Abingdon, UK).

Specifically, this PhD will design and make new specialised surfactants for with multifarious applications, including in non-aqueous media.

This PhD links strongly with other Infineum- funded PhD programmes: experimental tribometery and neutron reflection (Cambridge, Bristol), computer simulation (Edinburgh) and model polymer synthesis (Warwick), and cross-university collaborations will be developed.

Interested and suitably qualified candidates should make informal contact at with Professor Julian Eastoe ([Email Address Removed]) ( before Friday 26 February 2019. The intended start date for the project is 29 Sept 2021. After contacting Professor Eastoe, you may then apply using the University of Bristol on-line application system.

Funding Notes

Full studentship covering stipend (UKRI rate 21/22) and fees for 3.5 years

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