Applications for PhD studentships for September / October 2018 starts are now open.  For more information, on the projects listed below, please contact the named supervisor.


All applicants must have or expect to have a 1st or 2:1 class MChem, or equivalent degree by Autumn 2018.  Selection will be based on academic excellence and research potential, and all short-listed applicants will be interviewed (in person or by Skype).

Level of Award:

For James Watt Scholarship students, the annual stipend will be £15k and full fees will be paid, for 3 years.  For DTP Scholarship students, the annual stipend will be ca. £14,500 and full fees will be paid, for 3.5 years.  For ICS Scholarship students the annual stipend will be ca. £14,500 and full fees will be paid, for 3 years.



DTP2018/01: Discrete metal clusters for photocatalysis

Controlled synthesis of transition metal clusters and exploratory studies into their application as photocatalysts.

Supervisor: Dr R. D. McIntosh,

DTP2018/02: Imaging Molecular Collisions

The dynamics of inelastic and reactive collisions of radicals important in combustion, astrochemistry and atmospheric chemistry, will be determined using a combination of crossed molecular beams and velocity-map ion-imaging.

Supervisor: Prof M. L. Costen,

DTP2018/03: Development of Novel Visible Light Photoredox-Catalysed Reactions

This project will involve using visible light photoredox catalysts in unison with other transition metal catalysts in a dual catalytic mode, in order to enable reactions which are not possible using transition metal catalysts alone. We will also investigate the use of metal-free organophotoredox catalysts as cheaper and greener alternatives for developing new photoredox-catalysed reactions.

Supervisor: Dr A-L. Lee,

DTP2018/04: Computational Chemistry Modelling Solid State Organometallic Catalysis

Solid state organometallic chemistry offers a new approach to heterogeneous catalysis while maintaining the selectivity of homogeneous catalysis. This project will use computational modelling to provide mechanistic insight into reactivity in the solid-state that will provide a rational basis for the design of new catalysts for the transformation of small molecules.

Supervisor: Prof S. A. Macgregor,

DTP2018/05: Development of Small Molecule EPAC1 Activity Modulators

This project seeks to develop small molecule ligands for the cellular signalling enzyme EPAC1, a key target for drug development of the treatment of atherosclerosis and insulin resistance.

Supervisor: Dr G. Barker,



ICS2018/01: Polymers in Extreme Environments: Exploring the ballistic impact behaviour of polymers and ultimately polymer composites

The very wide spread use of polymer means they are often subjected to extreme conditions (high temperature, pressure, strain and strain rate). However, their behaviour in these regimes is not well understood, and this project will explore this behaviour particularly under very high (ballistic) strain rates.

Supervisor: Prof D. Bucknall,



JWS2018/01: Probing the surfaces of ionic liquids by reactive-atom scattering

The structure of the extreme outer layers of technologically important ionic liquids, their mixtures, and solutions will be probed using reactive-atom scattering, a novel method based on the laser-spectroscopic detection of the gas-phase products of selected reactive projectiles.

Supervisor: Prof K.G. McKendrick,

JWS2018/02: Computational Studies of Anti-Cancer Photochemistry

There is much interest in utilising light as an anti-cancer treatment. There remains much to understand and further develop however, and this project will explore this photochemistry using theoretical and computational methods.

Supervisor: Prof M.J. Paterson,

JWS2018/03: Spectroscopy & Dynamics of Atmospherically Relevant Molecules in the Time and Frequency Domains

The photochemical dynamics of small molecules of atmospheric relevance will be studied using a combination of femtosecond time-resolved and nanosecond frequency-resolved spectroscopy, with velocity-map imaging of photoelectrons and ions.

Supervisor: Dr S J Greaves and Dr D Townsend, and


How to apply:

When applying for Studentships, please read over our advice on: How to Apply