|Funding for:||UK Students, EU Students, International Students|
|Funding amount:||£17,668 For UK students, Tuition Fees and a stipend of £17,668 tax-free per annum for up to 3.5 years|
|Placed On:||6th March 2023|
|Closes:||31st August 2023|
Project title: Hydrodynamic Methods for Cell Disruption
Supervisory Team: Gustavo de Almeida
The disruption of microorganisms (in particular, lysing of cell membranes) immersed in fluids has been the object of increasing attention among engineers and scientists. First, there is an interest in understanding and predicting the conditions under which disruption will occur, with the aim minimising damage to cells (as it is the case, for example, in microalgae cultivation systems). Second, research in this area is also aimed at the development of technology to induce the breach of cell membranes and walls (via devices often referred to as homogenizers) to enable the extraction of intracellular components.
Mechanical methods, such as those based on hydrodynamic effects (e.g. shearing, cavitation, rapid pressure changes or gas solution/degasification) often offer advantages to many applications, as they do not require the addition of chemicals or enzymes which can have undesirable effects. While several alternatives are now available to disrupt cells, they are usually energy intensive and may induce undesired effects. In order to develop efficient technologies, further understanding of the interaction between microorganisms and physical phenomena operating at micro-scales is required.
In this 3.5 year fully-funded PhD project you will investigate the interaction between selected hydrodynamic effects and microorganisms. You will first investigate, design, manufacture and test devices to create desired hydrodynamic conditions in the laboratory. Such conditions will then need to be analysed at high resolution. Finally, you will investigate the response of unicellular organisms (e.g. microalgae) to the conditions produced in these devices.
You will join an exciting team of scientists in the Water and Environmental Engineering Group working on the cutting-edge research in environmental fluid dynamics and water engineering. You will have access to world-class laboratory facilities, which include some of the state-of-the-art measurement devices to analyse fluid flow and microalgae (e.g. Particle Image Velocimetry, Chlorophyl Fluorometer, Microscopy, Laser Interferometry), and outstanding fabrication facilities.
We are looking for a driven applicant with a strong Bachelors and/or Masters degree in Physics or Engineering, and expertise and interest in fluid dynamics, and who is also motivated to widen their knowledge to understand complex interactions between physics and living microorganisms.
If you wish to discuss any details of the project informally, please contact Gustavo de Almeida, Water and Environmental Engineering Research Group, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
A very good undergraduate degree (at least a UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent).
Closing date: applications should be received no later than 31st August 2023 for standard admissions, but later applications may be considered depending on the funds remaining in place.
Funding: For UK students, Tuition Fees and a stipend of £17,668 tax-free per annum for up to 3.5 years.
Applications should include:
For further information please contact: email@example.com
Type / Role: