Back to search results

PhD Studentship in Chemistry: Understanding Ionic Liquid Electrochemical Stability: Towards Superior Electrochemical Devices

University of Reading - School of Chemistry Food & Pharmacy - Department of Chemistry

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Reading
Funding for: UK Students, EU Students
Funding amount: 4 year award will include the Tuition fees plus stipend
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 6th November 2018
Closes: 15th December 2018
Reference: GS18-207

Supervisors:  Dr Kevin Lovelock

Project Overview:   Achieving a sustainable energy supply is one of the most urgent challenges facing the world. Fossil fuels contribute to climate change and their supply is finite. Alternative energy sources, e.g. solar and wind, offer fantastic possibilities for replacing fossil fuels. However, intermittent production means that dramatic improvements in energy storage are required. The incredible properties of ionic liquids (ILs) mean that there is huge potential for the use of ILs in electrochemical energy storage devices, e.g. batteries for phones and supercapacitors for cars. For electrochemical energy storage devices determining what happens when ILs are subjected to voltage (i.e. electrical energy) is paramount. When the voltage is outside the safe operating range, the IL will decompose and the device will malfunction. The student will use cutting-edge spectroscopy and spectrometry experiments to understand how to extend the operating range of ILs used in applications, including X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS, at the University of Reading and at the National XPS facility, Harwell) and synchrotron techniques (resonant Auger electron spectroscopy (RAES), X-ray emission spectroscopy, (XES), X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS), e.g. I09 at Diamond Light Source, Harwell). The PhD student will also have opportunity to work closely with the group of Dr. Tricia Hunt (Imperial College London), including the potential for carrying out calculations themselves. An interest in both physical chemistry and spectroscopy are required. Training in all aspects of the Ph.D. will be provided.


  • Applicants must hold a first or upper second class (2:1) MSci, MChem or Honours Degree in Chemistry, Physics, Chemical Engineering, Materials or an equivalent.
  • Due to restrictions on the funding this studentship is open to UK/EU students.

Funding Details:

  • As soon as possible
  • 4 year award
  • The award will include the Tuition fees plus stipend

How to apply:   

To apply for this studentship please submit an application for a PhD in Chemistry at

*Important notes*

  • 1) Please quote the reference ‘GS18-207’ in the ‘Scholarships applied for’ box which appears within the Funding Section of your on-line application.
  • 2) When you are prompted to upload a research proposal, please omit this step.

Application Deadline: 15th December 2018

Further Enquiries:  

Please note that, where a candidate is successful in being awarded funding, this will be confirmed via a formal studentship award letter; this will be provided separately from any Offer of Admission and will be subject to standard checks for eligibility and other criteria. 

For further details please contact Dr Kevin Lovelock (

We value your feedback on the quality of our adverts. If you have a comment to make about the overall quality of this advert, or its categorisation then please send us your feedback
Advert information

Type / Role:

Subject Area(s):


PhD tools
More PhDs from University of Reading

Show all PhDs for this organisation …

More PhDs like this
Join in and follow us

Browser Upgrade Recommended has been optimised for the latest browsers.

For the best user experience, we recommend viewing on one of the following:

Google Chrome Firefox Microsoft Edge