Postgraduate Research Opportunity: Ultramicroscopy of Complex Pharmaceutical Materials - iDPC STEM

University of Leeds

Value: Funding covers the cost of fees and provides a maintenance matching the Research Council UK rate (£14,553 for 2017/18). UK applicants will be eligible for a full award paying tuition fees and maintenance. European Union applicants will be eligible for an award paying tuition fees only, except in exceptional circumstances, or where residency has been established for more than 3 years prior to the start of the course.
Supervisors: Contact Dr Andy Brown to discuss this project further informally.

Project description

One of the key challenges currently faced by pharmaceutical product development is the ability to link structure to performance in order to realise the full potential of a drug. At present there are very few techniques available that enable the nanostructure of a medicine to be described at the small length scales involved while accounting for pharmaceutically unusual elements and structures, and also the unknown role of functional excipients.

Our goal in this project is to provide a complete physical description of complex pharmaceutical materials using specialist electron microscopy techniques. We will use electron microscopy (both scanning and transmission EM) to measure and understand the distribution of product components, size of pores and layers etc., then we will utilise the emerging capabilities of integrated differential phase contrast in scanning transmission electron microscopy (iDPC STEM) to investigate the key interfaces in a product at atomic resolution, mapping both light and heavy atoms. Analysis at this ground-breaking scale will enable structure-property relationships to be developed for performance control.

Entry requirements

Applications are invited from candidates with or expecting a minimum of a UK upper second class honours degree (2:1), and/or a Master’s degree in a relevant engineering or science subject, such as (but not limited to) materials science, chemistry or physics.

Additional staff contact

Dr Nicole Hondow

How to apply

Formal applications for research degree study should be made online through the university's website. Please state clearly in the research information section that the PhD you wish to be considered for is the ‘Ultramicroscopy of complex pharmaceutical materials – iDPC STEM’ as well as Dr Andy Brown as your proposed supervisor. In the funding section, please state 'EPSRC iCASE PhD studentship' as your sponsor.

If English is not your first language, you must provide evidence that you meet the University’s minimum English Language requirements.

We welcome scholarship applications from all suitably-qualified candidates, but UK black and minority ethnic (BME) researchers are currently under-represented in our Postgraduate Research community, and we would therefore particularly encourage applications from UK BME candidates. All scholarships will be awarded on the basis of merit.

If you require any further information please contact the Graduate School Office
e:, t: +44 (0)113 343 8000.

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