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PhD Studentship - Operando Electrochemical Atomic Force Microscopy of Li-S Batteries: Revealing the Nanoscale Mechanisms Driving Anode and Cathode Capacity Loss and Deterioration

UCL - Department of Chemical Engineering

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: London
Funding for: UK Students, EU Students, International Students
Funding amount: £22,000 per annum
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 28th May 2021
Closes: 16th August 2021

About the Project

Vacancy information

UCL Department of Chemical Engineering is one of the top research and teaching departments in the UK, and is a leader in battery research. This PhD studentship is funded for 4 years. The successful candidate will carry out cutting-edge experimental research in the area of Lithium Sulfur batteries at the intersection of engineering, chemistry, physics and materials science.


  1. To carry out experimental research in the field of materials science and energy storage.
  2. To study the processes at LiS battery electrode interfaces to inform the development of new materials, electrode architectures or diagnostic tools.
  3. To collaborate within a large research team.
  4. To prepare and present research findings to colleagues for review and collaboration purposes.

5.To contribute to the drafting and submission of articles to appropriate peer reviewed journals and progress reports as required.

  1. To contribute to the overall activities of the research team and department as required.
  2. To actively follow UCL policies including Equal Opportunities and Race Equality policies.
  3. To maintain an awareness and observation of Fire and Health & Safety Regulations.

Studentship description

This studentship is funded via the UK Faraday Institution. The successful candidate will join the LiSTAR (lithium sulfur battery) project, led by UCL, and study lithium sulfur batteries using electrochemical atomic force microscopy and related techniques.

Recipients will have access to multiple networking opportunities, industry visits, mentorship, internships, as well as quality experiences that will further develop knowledge, skills, and aspirations - Read more ( They will also benefit from a bespoke training programme (

Person specification

The person appointed will have the essential skills, abilities, personal attributes and experience listed below. In your application, you should demonstrate how you meet the person specification, using examples.

Knowledge – including Qualifications

Essential: Master’s degree in Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Materials Science, Physics or a related discipline

Desirable: Knowledge of electrochemical techniques Knowledge of scanning probe microscopy techniques (e.g. AFM)


Essential: Proficiency in conducting scientific experiments in Chemical/Materials Engineering or the Physical sciences Ability to manage time and work to deadlines Effective written and verbal communication skills (in English) Ability to present complex information effectively to range of audiences

Desirable: Experimental experience with electrochemistry and advanced materials characterisation Willingness to work at interdisciplinary boundaries Ability to interact with technical staff efficiency to achieve objectives.

Experience Desirable: Experience of working in/with industry

Personal Qualities

Essential: Commitment to the highest quality research, self-motivated and hard-working. Commitment to health and safety and the well-being of the research team.


The successful candidate must have a Master’s degree in Chemical Engineering, Materials Science, Chemistry, Physics or a related field. Prior experience with specific experimental techniques (e.g., electrochemistry, atomic force microscopy) is desirable, but not essential. More important is the desire and motivation to think creatively and collaborate widely to achieve project objectives.

To express your interest in this position please email Dr Tom Miller ( with your CV and fill in the Faraday Institution expression of interest form

To apply please submit your application through the following link (specifying Dr Tom Miller as academic supervisor and including a statement of interest):

Funding Notes

Duration of studentship: 4 years
Stipend: £22,000 per annum
Start date: 1st October 2021

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