PhD Studentships

Current PhD vacancies are listed below. See the postgraduate pages for more information on our PhD programmes.

Current Available Studentships

Computational Chemistry Studentships

Modelling the structures, stabilities, properties and chemistry of nitrocellulose

Publication date:

A 3-year PhD studentship is available in the UCL Chemistry Department to work with Professor Nora de Leeuw and project partners AWE on a computer simulation project to gain atomic-level insight into the physico-chemical properties of the complex energetic polymer nitrocellulose. The project will focus in particular on the chemical reactions involved in the initial polymerisation of the monomeric structure, the (partial) nitration of the cellulose, and the degradation processes. The project will require the application of both electronic structure techniques and classical molecular dynamics simulations to model the reaction pathways and mechanisms as well as the 3-dimensional material.

A 4-year EngD studentship on modelling defects in SiC

Publication date:

A 4-year EngD studentship on modelling defects in SiC



Semiconductor comprised of silicon (Si) and carbon (C). It is widely used for producing microelectronic devices and growing graphene layers. Other applications include car brakes, car clutches and ceramic plates in bulletproof vests. Defects in SiC and its interfaces with SiO2 determine the performance and reliability of microelectronic devices and can be used for quantum computation.

A 3.5-year PhD Studentship in modelling the effect of pathogenic mutations on the behaviour of regulatory domains

Publication date:

Supervisors: Professor Francesco Gervasio (UCL), Prof. Marius Sudol (NUS and ASTAR, Singapore)

A 3.5-year PhD studentship in Low-Dimensional Nanostructures for Energy Storage

Publication date:

Supervisors: Professor Z. Xiao Guo (UCL, UK) and Dr. Yun Zong (ASTAR IMRE, Singapore)

Applications are invited for a 3.5-year PhD studentship offered jointly by the M3S CDT in the Faculty of Mathematical and Physical Sciences, UCL and the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Singapore. The studentship will commence in September 2015.

A 4-year EngD studentship in Synthesis and Surface Characterisations of Novel 2D Layered Materials

Publication date:

Supervisor: Professor Z. Xiao Guo Department of Chemistry, UCL

A 4-year EngD studentship is available within the Centre for Doctoral training in Molecular Modelling and Materials Simulation, UCL to work with Professor Z. Xiao Guo on synthesis and surface characterisations of novel 2D layered materials. The studentship is co-sponsored by Keysight Technologies UK Ltd. The start date is September 2015.

A 3.5-year PhD Studentship in Self-assemble Multifunctional Nanomotors for Intelligent Active Delivery of Drugs

Publication date:

Supervisors: Dr. Tung Chun Lee Department of Chemistry, UCL, Dr. Xian Jun Loh (A*STAR IMRE, Singapore)

A 3-year PhD Studentship in Statistical Regularisation

Publication date:

Start Date: September 2015

Applications are invited for a PhD funding opportunity offered jointly by the Faculty of Mathematical and Physical Sciences, UCL and the Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (JAIST). The studentship will commence in September 2015 and is based both at JAIST and the UCL Department of Statistical Science.

2 x PhD projects in the London Centre for Nanotechnology and Chemistry Department of University College London

Publication date:

Two PhD positions are available in Prof. Angelos Michaelides’ ICE research group in the London Centre for Nanotechnology and Department of Chemistry. The theoretical/simulation projects are aimed at applying and developing computer simulation approaches to better understand the formation of ice.

Applications for Research Engineers for the Engineering Doctorate Centre in Molecular Modelling and Materials Simulation - Prof Nora de Leeuw

Publication date:

Summary: Applications are invited for Research Engineers for the Engineering Doctorate Centre in Molecular Modelling and Materials Simulation. The Engineering Doctorate Centre is jointly run by the Departments of Chemistry, Earth Sciences and Physics and the Birkbeck Industrial Materials Group. All the Departments have significant (internationally-leading) research programmes in the area of materials computer modelling over a range of length- and time-scales.

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Inorganic and Materials Chemistry Studentships

Exploration of super resolution microscopy for catalyst characterisation

Publication date:

The latter part of 2014 saw the awarding of the Nobel Prize for Chemistry to Betzig, Hell and Moerner for the development of super-resolution light microscopy. However, as with nearly all microscopy techniques the main focus to date has been the study of biological samples and has therefore rarely been employed to image inorganic materials despite the obvious potential benefits which may enable a better understanding of material’s chemico-physical properties. In this project we will explore the potential of super-resolution light microscopy to allow us to evaluate or ‘chemically image’ catalytic materials under dynamic conditions to obtain insight into structure-activity relationships at ‘high’ resolution (at the nm – µm scale). Central to the success of this project is the close proximity of the collaborating partners, including UCL@UK Catalysis Hub, Johnson Matthey Plc@UK Catalysis Hub and the STFC Central Laser Facility all of which are based at the Research Complex@Harwell on the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus where the project will be based. 

Modelling the structures, stabilities, properties and chemistry of nitrocellulose

Publication date:

A 3-year PhD studentship is available in the UCL Chemistry Department to work with Professor Nora de Leeuw and project partners AWE on a computer simulation project to gain atomic-level insight into the physico-chemical properties of the complex energetic polymer nitrocellulose. The project will focus in particular on the chemical reactions involved in the initial polymerisation of the monomeric structure, the (partial) nitration of the cellulose, and the degradation processes. The project will require the application of both electronic structure techniques and classical molecular dynamics simulations to model the reaction pathways and mechanisms as well as the 3-dimensional material.

PhD in Material Nanoscience at University College London

Publication date:

PhD in Material Nanoscience at University College London

 A fully funded PhD studentship is available within the UCL Department of Chemistry to work under the supervision of Dr. Giorgio Volpe and Prof. Ivan Parkin on the experimental study of evaporation processes of biologically active liquids on novel materials with controllable wetting properties and performances. This project is fundamentally relevant for the design of novel materials for many biological, medical and technological applications.

A 4-year EngD studentship on modelling defects in SiC

Publication date:

A 4-year EngD studentship on modelling defects in SiC



Semiconductor comprised of silicon (Si) and carbon (C). It is widely used for producing microelectronic devices and growing graphene layers. Other applications include car brakes, car clutches and ceramic plates in bulletproof vests. Defects in SiC and its interfaces with SiO2 determine the performance and reliability of microelectronic devices and can be used for quantum computation.

A 4-year EngD studentship in Synthesis and Surface Characterisations of Novel 2D Layered Materials

Publication date:

Supervisor: Professor Z. Xiao Guo Department of Chemistry, UCL

A 4-year EngD studentship is available within the Centre for Doctoral training in Molecular Modelling and Materials Simulation, UCL to work with Professor Z. Xiao Guo on synthesis and surface characterisations of novel 2D layered materials. The studentship is co-sponsored by Keysight Technologies UK Ltd. The start date is September 2015.

A 3.5-year PhD studentship in Low-Dimensional Nanostructures for Energy Storage

Publication date:

Supervisors: Professor Z. Xiao Guo (UCL, UK) and Dr. Yun Zong (ASTAR IMRE, Singapore)

Applications are invited for a 3.5-year PhD studentship offered jointly by the M3S CDT in the Faculty of Mathematical and Physical Sciences, UCL and the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Singapore. The studentship will commence in September 2015.

A 3.5-year PhD Studentship in Self-assemble Multifunctional Nanomotors for Intelligent Active Delivery of Drugs

Publication date:

Supervisors: Dr. Tung Chun Lee Department of Chemistry, UCL, Dr. Xian Jun Loh (A*STAR IMRE, Singapore)

2 x PhD projects in the London Centre for Nanotechnology and Chemistry Department of University College London

Publication date:

Two PhD positions are available in Prof. Angelos Michaelides’ ICE research group in the London Centre for Nanotechnology and Department of Chemistry. The theoretical/simulation projects are aimed at applying and developing computer simulation approaches to better understand the formation of ice.

Regeneration of Hydrogen Storage Materials

Publication date:

Title: EPSRC CASE PhD Studentship

Reference: 1373649

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Biological and Organic Chemistry Studentships

Novel Chemical Tools for Targeting Cancer Pathways

Publication date:

This project is directed towards the development of novel chemical tools to control the bioactivity of small molecules within cancer cells. These compounds will assist both in deciphering the biological pathways that lead to cancer as well as allowing the targeted treatment of diseased tissues. The primary focus of this research programme will be to manipulate DNA methylation patterns, as it is known that aberrant methylation leads to cancer, but modulation of DNA methylation using small molecules is currently not possible. Successful preparation of molecules capable of manipulating DNA methylation would be extremely valuable biological tools and have enormous potential as therapeutic agents. The project will encompass the chemical synthesis of the research reagents and their characterization using classical spectroscopic techniques as well as biochemical, epigenetic and cell biological assays. The PhD candidate will receive training within the internationally recognized research groups within UCL Chemistry and via the wider UCL PhD training programme.

Publication date:

4-year PhD studentship: Pd-Catalysed Synthesis of Functionalised Chiral Saturated Heterocycles Dr Tom Sheppard

Publication date:

3-year PhD studentship: Investigating the pre-biotic origin of proteins Dr Tom Sheppard

Selective side-chain activation in native peptides and proteins

Publication date:

23 January 2015

PhD Project

A PhD position is available working with Dr. D. Macmillan in the area of site-selective peptide side-chain activation.

‘Potassium Alkoxides in Transition Metal Free Synthesis and Catalysis’

Publication date:

PhD Project

A PhD position is available working with Dr. J. D. Wilden on the development of organic reactions promoted by group 1 alkoxides.

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Physical Chemistry Studentships

Exploration of super resolution microscopy for catalyst characterisation

Publication date:

The latter part of 2014 saw the awarding of the Nobel Prize for Chemistry to Betzig, Hell and Moerner for the development of super-resolution light microscopy. However, as with nearly all microscopy techniques the main focus to date has been the study of biological samples and has therefore rarely been employed to image inorganic materials despite the obvious potential benefits which may enable a better understanding of material’s chemico-physical properties. In this project we will explore the potential of super-resolution light microscopy to allow us to evaluate or ‘chemically image’ catalytic materials under dynamic conditions to obtain insight into structure-activity relationships at ‘high’ resolution (at the nm – µm scale). Central to the success of this project is the close proximity of the collaborating partners, including UCL@UK Catalysis Hub, Johnson Matthey Plc@UK Catalysis Hub and the STFC Central Laser Facility all of which are based at the Research Complex@Harwell on the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus where the project will be based. 

Reactions of H, O, N atoms with molecules on astrochemically relevant surfaces

Publication date:

PhD Studentship in Laboratory Astrochemistry at UCL

A fully-funded STFC PhD studentship in Laboratory Astrochemistry is available at UCL in the group of Professor Stephen Price. The proposal was funded as part of a successful consortium proposal in Laboratory Astrochemistry with the University of Sussex (Professor Wendy Brown) and Heriot-Watt University (Professor Martin McCoustra).

PhD in Material Nanoscience at University College London

Publication date:

PhD in Material Nanoscience at University College London

 A fully funded PhD studentship is available within the UCL Department of Chemistry to work under the supervision of Dr. Giorgio Volpe and Prof. Ivan Parkin on the experimental study of evaporation processes of biologically active liquids on novel materials with controllable wetting properties and performances. This project is fundamentally relevant for the design of novel materials for many biological, medical and technological applications.

A 3.5-year PhD Studentship in modelling the effect of pathogenic mutations on the behaviour of regulatory domains

Publication date:

Supervisors: Professor Francesco Gervasio (UCL), Prof. Marius Sudol (NUS and ASTAR, Singapore)

Scanning Probe Microscopy Studies of a Model Au–Ceria Catalyst

Publication date:

3 Year PhD Studentship: Scanning Probe Microscopy Studies of a Model Au–Ceria Catalyst

Supervisors: Prof. Geoff Thornton (UCL), Prof. Masahiko Tomitori, Dr. Akira Sasahara (JAIST, Japan)

2 x PhD projects in the London Centre for Nanotechnology and Chemistry Department of University College London

Publication date:

Two PhD positions are available in Prof. Angelos Michaelides’ ICE research group in the London Centre for Nanotechnology and Department of Chemistry. The theoretical/simulation projects are aimed at applying and developing computer simulation approaches to better understand the formation of ice.

Atomic scale imaging and local spectroscopy of CeO2 - Prof Geoff Thornton

Publication date:

PhD Studentship
London Centre for Nanotechnology
University College London
Summary: Applications are invited for a 4-year PhD studentship. The aim of this project is to provide an understanding of the chemical physics of single-crystalline CeO2 in relation to hydrogen production.

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