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Research Assistant in Polymer Chemistry

Newcastle University

Location: Newcastle upon Tyne
Salary: £28,756 to £30,497
Hours: Part Time
Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
Placed On: 14th September 2021
Closes: 28th September 2021
Job Ref: 11603

Company description:

We are a world class research-intensive university. We deliver teaching and learning of the highest quality. We play a leading role in economic, social and cultural development of the North East of England. Attracting and retaining high-calibre people is fundamental to our continued success.

Job description:

The Role

We are seeking to appoint a Research Assistant in Polymer Chemistry on a project funded by the Royal Society of Chemistry. This project, with Dr Marloes Peeters as PI, seeks to develop polymer-based sensors for detection of antibiotics. Via identifying sources of contamination, we expect it is possible to combat accelerated development of antimicrobial resistance.

You will be based in the School of Engineering, specificially within the Advanced Materials and Electrochemical Engineering group in Chemical Engineering. Candidates should have a research background in a relevant project area including polymer chemistry, chemical engineering, or biomaterials. Desirable is experience in advanced polymer synthesis, such as production of molecularly imprinted polymers, and use of analytical techniques including NMR, use of confocal/inverted microscopes, and thermal analysis. Since the project is linked to an important societal issue (antimicrobial resistance), we expect the RA to take part in public engagement activities around this topic.

This role is part time for 18.5 hours per week for a fixed term period of 5 months.

For informal enquiries contact Dr Marloes Peeters, PI of the project (

Advanced Materials and Electrochemical Engineering Science web page:

Further information on the School of Engineering can be found here.

Key Accountabilities

  • You will synthesize polymers with integrated fluorescent moieties.
  • Integrate these polymers into appropriate sensing platform.
  • Independently use a broad range of analytical techniques including NMR, UV-Vis and thermal analysis.
  • Use microscopes (in the Biomaging suite) to study the binding of antibiotics to the polymer layers.
  • Take a lead in data processing and report writing.
  • Present results at meetings and conferences.
  • Take part in writing of publications.

The Person



  • Masters in a relevant discipline i.e. Chemistry, Chemical Engineering or Material Science.

Knowledge, Skills, and Experience


  • A proven track record, and fundamental and practical knowledge in at least one of the following research areas: polymer science, chemistry, or biomaterials.


  • First-hand experience with analytical techniques such as NMR, Heat-Transfer Method, and optical imaging.
  • Experience with advanced polymer synthesis techniques.

Attributes and Behaviour


  • Excellent in English communication with self-motivation, enthusiasm and open-minded attitude.


  • Willingness to travel and visit prospective industrial, and work under pressure to achieve deadlines.
  • Experience in public engagement and disseminating research via professional and social media.
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