PhD Studentship: Deposition and Properties of Thin Films of High-Entropy Alloys

Loughborough University

Start date of studentship: 1st October 2018


Primary supervisor: Dr Michael Cropper

Secondary supervisor: Dr Niladri Banerjee

A project is available to investigate the properties of thin films of high-entropy alloys, developing skills is thin films deposition, high-vacuum and thin films analysis techniques.

Loughborough University is a top-ten rated university in England for research intensity (REF2014). In choosing Loughborough for your research, you’ll work alongside academics who are leaders in their field. You will benefit from comprehensive support and guidance from our Doctoral College, including tailored careers advice, to help you succeed in your research and future career.

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Full Project Detail:

Alloys made from five or more metallic elements in roughly equal proportions are frequently described as high-entropy alloys. Bulk high-entropy alloys have been widely studied and the materials have been shown to have promising mechanical properties including. A typical example of a high-entropy alloy is CoCrCuFeNi. These alloys are stabilised by the entropy of mixing and tend to form solid solutions. Although there have been many studies of bulk materials, there are fewer reports on thin films.

We intend to study the deposition and properties of thin films of some example high-entropy alloys. The deposition techniques at our disposal are pulsed laser deposition and magnetron sputtering, the latter principally for non-magnetic alloys. The aim is to deposit thin films under differing conditions and potentially with varying compositions, and to appraise them using analytical techniques including x-ray diffraction and electron spectroscopy. The analysis will address issues such as structure, composition and any incidence of surface segregation that may affect surface properties. Where appropriate the analysis may be extended to magnetic properties.

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Entry requirements:

Applicants should have, or expect to achieve, at least a 2:1 Honours degree (or equivalent) in Physics or a related subject. A relevant Master’s degree and/or experience in one or more of the following will be an advantage: thin films; surface science.

Funding information:

This studentship will be awarded on a competitive basis to applicants who have applied to this project and/or any of the advertised projects prioritised for funding by the School of Science.

The 3-year studentship provides a tax-free stipend of £14,553 (2017 rate) per annum (in line with the standard research council rates) for the duration of the studentship plus tuition fees at the UK/EU rate.  International (non-EU) students may apply however the total value of the studentship will be used towards the cost of the International tuition fee in the first instance.

Contact details:

Name: Dr Michael Cropper

Email address:

Telephone number: +44-1509-223308

How to apply:

All applications should be made online at  Under programme name, select Physics.

Please quote reference number: MC/PH/2018

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