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PhD Studentship - Nanoscale Tweezers for Single Molecule Manipulation

University of Leeds

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Leeds
Funding for: UK Students, EU Students, International Students
Funding amount: £12,000 see advert
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 7th June 2019
Closes: 31st July 2019
  • Funded PhD project: Worldwide (International, UK and EU)
  • Value: Funding covers the cost of tuition fees as well as a maintenance grant of £12,000 per annum. Funding duration is 3 years. The successful candidate is also encouraged to work up to 250 hours per year as a lab demonstrator, for which up to an additional £3,000 can be earned.
  • Number of awards: 1
  • Deadline: 31/07/2019
  • Supervisors: Please contact Dr Paolo Actis or Professor Christoph Walti to discuss this project further informally.
Project description

Are you interested in working at the interface between electronic engineering, physics, and biology? Do you want to contribute to the development of the next generation of ultra-sensitive tools for personalized health?

We have recently developed nanoscale tweezers based on double-barrel nanopipettes that take advantage of dielectrophoretic forces to trap individual molecules in solution (Nature Nanotechnology, In press). The nanoscale tweezers can generate trapping forces per applied potential many orders of magnitude higher than any other device reported in the literature.

This project will exploit this discovery to enable concurrent manipulation and sensing of individual molecules. Within this project, you will tackle the problem of single molecule sensing and analysis, a key challenge for the development of ultra-sensitive diagnostic devices for personalised health.

You will have access to state-of-the-art instrumentation for nanofabrication and characterisation and you will be trained in a variety of biophysical techniques both optical and electrical. You will be based in a dynamic environment within the School of Electronic and Electrical Engineering where over 15 scientists from all over the world work at the interface of biology and electronics.

Entry requirements

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

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 'Nanoscale Tweezers for single molecule manipulation' as well as Dr Paolo Actis or Professor Christoph Walti as your proposed supervisor(s).

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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