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PhD Project - Designing Next Generation Robust Hybrid Porous Materials for Detecting and Capturing Harmful Pollutants - Your career at RMIT

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Categories: Scholarships

Designing Next Generation Robust Hybrid Porous Materials for Detecting and Capturing Harmful Pollutants.
Applied Chemistry and Environmental Science / Applied Porous Materials Team (CSIRO)
Location (City)
Joint PhD Project
This project will provide a stipend of $30,000 per annum for 3.5 years
Applicants must hold Australian or New Zealand citizenship or be an Australian Permanent Resident
Preferred applicant to commence in March 2018
Project Description
An exciting opportunity is available for an outstanding PhD candidate to work on an ARC funded project on computational design of next generation hybrid porous materials for detecting and capturing harmful pollutants that are carcinogenic and degrade environmental quality. The past decade has seen the emergence of metal organic frameworks (MOFs) or porous coordination polymers (PCPs) as potential candidate materials across a plethora of applications [1, 2]. MOFs are crystalline materials built from metal ions or clusters bridged by organic linkers to form one-, two- or three-dimensional structures. MOFs are porous materials that hold the world record for specific surface area and storage of gases. MOF research has become one of the fastest growing fields in materials science. More than 20,000 different MOFs have been reported and studied within the past decade and nearly 130,000 hypothetical MOFs have been designed based on different metal clusters and ligands [2]. However, their uptake by industry is hamstrung by a lack of knowledge of their in situ performance under realistic conditions and the stability of MOFs in different thermal, chemical and mechanical environments [3]. Understanding these issues is critical for MOF manufacturing, processing and performance. This project will focus on fundamental understanding of what makes MOFs stable in realistic conditions using state of the art computational techniques [4] and to exploit this new understanding to guide development of robust porous materials for capturing harmful pollutants. We seek chemistry/physics/engineering graduates who have some background in any of the following: atomistic modelling, in silico design of materials, programming, high-throughput screening, Monte Carlo methods and first principles calculations.
The project involves close collaboration with experimentalist in the field of nanomaterials and device fabrication. Specifically, the project involves: (i) Develop in silico screening tool for pre-screening thousands of materials for capturing harmful pollutants. (ii) Develop new descriptors based on the structure–property relationship to identify materials that merit experimental characterisation. (iii) Use a combinatorial approach integrating modelling and chemical experiments to speed up the design cycle from laboratory testing to industrial use. (iv) Develop understanding of the stability of MOF materials in realistic conditions to find the best, robust materials for large-scale synthesis. 

[1]. J. Jiang et al.  Chemical Society Reviews 40 (2011) 3599.
[2]  M. Rubio-Martinez et al. Chemical Society Reviews 46 (2017) 3453.
[2]. C. E. Wilmer et al. Nature Chemistry 4 (2012) 83.
[3]. A. J. Howarth et al. Nature Reviews, Materials 1 (2016).
[4].  J. D. Evans et al. Chemistry of Materials 29 (2017) 199.
Contact Details:
To discuss this project further or submit an application, please contact:
            Dr Ravichandar Babarao ( – Office 3.1.02A
            Dr Xavier Mulet ( – New Horizon Building, Clayton
Application close: 13 Mar 2018 11:55 PM AUS Eastern Daylight Time

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ID: 11765426 - Save Job
Category: Jobs : Education Jobs
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PhD Project - Designing Next Generation Robust Hybrid Porous Materials for Detecting and Capturing Harmful Pollutants - Your career at RMIT RMIT


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