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PhD in Computing Science and Chemistry - Chemputation and Chemputability: Reasoning about autonomous chemical synthesis

   College of Science and Engineering

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  Dr Blair Archibald, Dr Hessam Mehr  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

About the Project

Applicants are invited for a fully funded PhD studentship (UK fees + stipend at Research Council rates) in an interdisciplinary project between the Schools of Computing Science and Chemistry at the University of Glasgow.

This project brings together research from Chemistry and Computing Science (CS) to address fundamental and practical questions about the new discipline of chemputation—the evolution of automated chemical robotic platforms into the chemical equivalent of digital computers, i.e. chemical processing units (ChemPUs), designed to automate chemical synthesis and the discover new compounds. Chemputers have the potential to revolutionise how we do chemistry, including enabling bespoke drug synthesis in remote locations and large-scale co-creation of chemical experiments through shared chemical synthesis code.

You will investigate the use of formal methods/models for reasoning about chemputers and chemputability — what is possible using chemputation and what constraints we may place on it. Techniques may include type systems to reason about and constrain the chemical code that is executed, and runtime models (digital twins). Together, these will answer questions such as: can my synthesis lead to an unstable chemical? Do I still have enough resources to complete a synthesis if some components fail? Is the user authorized to run this chemputation (which may produce a dangerous or illegal compound)?

This project is interdisciplinarity and wide ranging, from theoretical analysis and modelling within Computer Science, to trying out new ideas on real Chemputer hardware located in the University of Glasgow’s state of the art Advanced Research Centre (https://www.gla.ac.uk/research/arc/).

How to Apply: Please refer to the following website for details on how to apply:


Funding Notes

Funding is available to cover tuition fees for UK applicants for 3.5 years, as well as paying a stipend at the Research Council rate (£16,062 for Session 2022-23)
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