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PhD Studentship in Electrochemical Surface Science of Energy Storage Materials

Department of Chemistry

About the Project

A fully-funded 4-year PhD studentships in the area of electrochemical surface science of energy storage materials is available under the supervision of Dr Stijn (Stan) Mertens in the Department of Chemistry, Lancaster University, commencing in July 2020. The position is funded by Lancaster University and will be linked to the Faraday Institution NEXGENNA project for development of Na-ion batteries (

The project will focus on the in-depth study of processes that take place on the surface of battery materials during charging and discharging, to better understand what limits capacity and how degradation occurs. This knowledge will contribute to the development of better materials for batteries, in terms of reliability, life span, cost and safety. In the course of this project, you will be trained in core electrochemical surface science and analytical techniques, and will have the opportunity to further your knowledge through regular group meetings and seminars. You will have access to advanced equipment, including a new electrochemical surface science laboratory, cyclic voltammetry, electrochemical scanning tunnelling microscopy, and differential electrochemical mass spectrometry.

Applicants will hold, or expect to receive, a 1st class or 2:1 UK Masters-level or BSc degree (or equivalent) in Chemistry, Physics or a related discipline and possess theoretical and practical skills commensurate with the undergraduate degree programme. The successful candidate will demonstrate a strong interest in experimental physical chemistry, enthusiasm to work in a laboratory environment, willingness to learn, a collaborative attitude, and will possess excellent written and oral communication skills.

We encourage informal e-mail enquiries to Dr Stijn Mertens () before submitting an application. Applications should be made via Lancaster University’s online application system ( Applications will be considered in the order that they are received, and the position may be filled when a suitable candidate has been identified. Please indicate on your application that you are applying for this funded PhD project.

The Department of Chemistry at Lancaster University provides a research environment that strongly supports the individual needs of each student, and promotes a healthy work–life balance. We are committed to the Athena Swan Charter, which recognises and celebrates good employment practice undertaken to address gender equality in higher education and research. Our commitment to these principles is reflected in our recent receipt of an Athena Swan Bronze Award. The Department of Chemistry also operates an informal PhD peer-peer mentor scheme available to all students.

Funding Notes

The studentships will cover fees at the UK/EU rate plus the standard maintenance stipend (£15,285 for 2020/21).

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