PhD Description: Long-lived environmentally-mobile radionuclides such as 99
Tc (technetium) pose a significant groundwater contamination issue and present a serious challenge for the clean-up of nuclear sites such as Sellafield. This can be addressed using solid-phase adsorbents configured as permeable reactive barrier (PRB) materials that have high selectivity for the dominant 99
anion, trapping this from contaminated groundwaters. In a recently established multi-disciplinary project between Southampton chemistry and the National Oceanography Centre Southampton (NOCS) we are investigating the potential of microporous materials known as metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) as PRBs for technetium removal. MOFs are high surface area porous solids based on the linking of metal-ions and organic linkers and constitute a modular materials platform ensuring they have highly tuneable structures and functionality for the optimisation of their properties for given applications. In this project you will prepare and characterise a range of new and existing MOFs and directly evaluate their technetium uptake properties, and it is expected that a number of technetium uptake mechanisms will be investigated. In order to increase their practical utility as PRBs the best performing MOFs will be configured as composite materials such as membranes and columns through which contaminated groundwater can flow. The successful candidate will spend time in both chemistry and NOCS and will develop broad skills in materials synthesis and characterisation and analytical methods relevant to the nuclear industry.
The project is funded for 3 years and welcomes applicants from the UK/EU who have or expect to obtain at least an upper second class degree in chemistry, materials science or analytical science. Funding will cover fees and a stipend at current research council rates (201819) of £ 14,777 per annum.
Due to funding restrictions this position is only open to UK/EU applicants
Applications for a PhD in Chemistry should be submitted online at https://studentrecords.soton.ac.uk/BNNRPROD/bzsksrch.P_Search
Please ensure you select the academic session 2018-2019 in the academic year field and click on the Research radio button. Enter Chemistry in the search text field.
Please place Dr Darren Bradshaw in the field for proposed supervisor/project
General enquiries should be made to Dr Darren Bradshaw at firstname.lastname@example.org. Any queries on the application process should be made to email@example.com
Applications will be considered in the order that they are received, and the position will be considered filled when a suitable candidate has been identified