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Various topics in the modelling of microscale systems, smart material dynamics, and microbot propulsion - 1 studentship

   School of Mathematics

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  Dr T Montenegro-Johnson  No more applications being accepted  Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

I am interested in how we can combine soft responsive materials, such as thermoresponsive hydrogels, with active flow driving components, to create smart microscale systems, such as shape-shifting microscale robots.

PhD projects with me typically involve a mixture of asymptotic analysis and scientific programming, using methods such as the Boundary Element Method for Stokes flows. This is usually with bespoke code written in Matlab or Python. You will likely be working with experimentalists on real experimental data, so there will also be some data/image analysis.

We are a friendly, approachable, and inclusive research group and department. Please feel free to contact me if you have any queries.

Funding Notes

This project has capacity for competitively awarded funding for international students via a Leverhulme Trust Research Leadership Award to Prof. Montenegro-Johnson, or alternatively via the University of Birmingham Topological Design Centre for Doctoral Training.


The swelling and shrinking of spherical thermo-responsive hydrogels. M. Butler and T. D. Montenegro-Johnson, Journal of Fluid Mechanics, 2022.
Colloidal Active Matter Mimics the Behavior of Biological Microorganisms - An Overview. A. Nsamela, A. I. Garcia Zintzun, T. D. Montenegro-Johnson, and J. Simmchen, Small 2022.
Slender phoretic theory of chemically active filaments. P. Katsamba, S. Michelin, and T. D. Montenegro-Johnson, Journal of Fluid Mechanics 2020.
Shape-programmed 3D printed swimming microtori for the transport of passive and active agents. R. D. Baker, T. D. Montenegro-Johnson, A. D. Sediako, M. J. Thomson, A. Sen, E. Lauga, I. Aranson, Nature Communications 2019.
Microtransformers: Controlled microscale navigation with flexible robots. T. D. Montenegro-Johnson, Physical Review Fluids 2018.

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