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  Supramolecular dyes for functional materials

   School of Chemistry

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  Dr T A Barendt  Applications accepted all year round  Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

About the Project

Organic dyes such as perylene diimides are essential building blocks for materials that absorb and emit light, making them important in optical sensing, solar cells and bioimaging. The arrangement of organic dyes is essential for tuning their photophysical properties for these applications. However, controlling the supramolecular assembly of dyes is challenging because their intermolecular interactions can be weak and non-directional. Therefore, the aim of this PhD project is to prepare new molecular architectures, including macrocycles, supramolecular complexes, and mechanically interlocked molecules to tune the electronic communication between dyes, optimising their photophysical properties for a range of functional materials. An example of our recent work in this area is seen here: J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2022, 144, 12290

In this PhD project, the candidate will prepare and analyse new organic dye-based supramolecular architectures in the School of Chemistry at the University of Birmingham. The researcher will develop skills in molecular synthesis, supramolecular chemistry and a variety of industry-standard analytical techniques (e.g., NMR spectroscopy, mass spectrometry, HPLC). This is an interdisciplinary project and so the candidate will also receive training in photophysics and electrochemistry.

The candidate will be supervised, supported and mentored by Dr Tim Barendt at the University of Birmingham. They will join Tim’s dynamic and friendly research group in the School of Chemistry: . Please do not hesitate to contact Tim for more information using the details below.

Candidates should be creative, curious and motivated, with an interest in synthetic organic chemistry and supramolecular chemistry. 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. The project is open to UK students and, depending on competitive funding, international students (please contact Dr Barendt).

To apply, please contact Tim using the details below. There is no closing date but please apply as soon as possible since the position will be filled when we find a strong candidate.

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 project is competition funded in full (fees, stipend, travel) via CDT programme(s) at the University of Birmingham.


An example of our recent work in this area is seen here: J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2022, 144, 12290

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