Perylene diimides as smart optical reporters for environmental sensing and bioimaging

   School of Chemistry

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  Dr T A Barendt, Dr Ute Resch-Genger  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

About the Project

This is a PhD project in the fields of synthetic supramolecular chemistry and photophysics. The research will be conducted at both the University of Birmingham (in the UK) and Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und –prüfung (in Berlin, Germany), under the joint supervision of Dr Timothy Barendt and Dr. Ute Resch-Genger, respectively. The aim of this project is to demonstrate the huge potential of perylene diimides as optical reporters for environmental sensing and bioimaging. The candidate will develop novel dyes exhibiting switchable aggregation properties for detecting bioanalytically relevant targets. Furthermore, the supramolecular chemistry of perylene diimides will be exploited for sensing environmentally relevant pollutants. The researcher will develop skills in molecular synthesis, supramolecular chemistry and photophysics.

This is a fully-funded PhD for 3.5 years (fees and stipend), to be awarded by the University of Birmingham. The candidate will work at both Birmingham and Berlin, joining the research teams of Barendt ( and Resch-Genger (, respectively. Candidates should be creative, curious and motivated, with an interest in synthetic chemistry and photophysics, although no formal experience is required.

To apply, please contact Tim using the details below. Also, please do not hesitate to get in touch with Tim for more information on this position. The School of Chemistry is keen to achieve a gender and diversity balance across the School and welcome applicants from all backgrounds. The School 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.

Chemistry (6)

Funding Notes

This fully-funded PhD position is open to both UK and German students. By the start of their appointment, applicants should have obtained a strong Master's degree in Chemistry and not be in possession of a PhD.


For previous work on our supramolecular sensors, please see: J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2017, 139, 9026-9037 ( J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2018, 140, 1924-1936 (

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