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Research Fellow (Lithium sulphur batteries-LiSTAR project)

Department of Mechanical Engineering Sciences

Location:  Guildford
Salary:  £31,866 to £40,322 per annum
Fixed Term
Post Type:  Full Time
Advert Placed:  Monday 28 October 2019
Closing Date:  Sunday 01 December 2019
Interview Date:  To be confirmed
Reference:  074919-R

Applications are invited for a research position RA1A  within the LiSTAR project. The post is funded by the Faraday Institution through the ‘Lithium Sulfur Technology Accelerator (LiSTAr)’ research grant. The Faraday Institution is the UK’s independent institute for electrochemical energy storage research and skills development; with a vision to bring together scientists and industry partners on research projects to reduce battery cost, weight, and volume; to improve performance and reliability (faraday.ac.uk). The LiSTAr project involves close collaboration of the University of Surrey with other university teams at University College London, Imperial College London and the universities of Southampton, Nottingham, Cambridge and Oxford. The university research is supported by a core group of seven strategic industrial partners, together with a group of additional industrial supporters.

The LiSTAr programme aims to establish the foremost international programme on Li-S batteries; launching the UK as a global hub for this emerging technology. Li-S is amongst the most attractive post Li-ion chemistries, with notable operational, cost and weight benefits, however fundamental improvements to cycle life and rate are required to realise its potential. Using a multi-disciplinary, ‘whole-cell’ approach, LiSTAr will systematically tackle these challenges, demonstrating transformative improvements during the project. As part of the ‘whole-cell’ philosophy researchers in the University of Surrey will focus on improvements to the cathode, development of spatio-temporal models across a broad range of scales and optimising the engineering of Li-S devices.

Requirements for this post are:

1. A first degree in Physics, Chemistry or Engineering.

2. A PhD or an EngD or equivalent work experience in the areas of materials science and engineering or electrochemical devices, with preferred research focus as specified below in 3a and 3b.

3. Excellent research expertise in at the following two areas (a, b): a. Excellent experimental skills and experience in the development of energy storage materials and devices (synthesis and production of graphene; fabrication of electrode coatings; sulfur impregnation into cathode hosts; cell design and fabrication with coated electrodes for Li-S batteries and supercapacitors; testing of batteries and supercapacitors; maintaining argon glovebox and carrying out experimental work in a glovebox). b. Expertise in simulations and results analysis at molecular level (DFT (density functional theory) simulations and MD (molecular dynamics) simulations).

4. Microstructural material characterisation and physical material characterisation (e.g. using XRD); chemical characterisation (e.g. using XPS, UV/vis, FTIR and Raman techniques).

5. Excellent record of publications of research papers in journals.

The post will be shared between the following Departments at the University of Surrey: the Materials Group in the Department of Mechanical Engineering Sciences (prime investigator: Dr Tina Lekakou, email: C.Lekakou@surrey.ac.uk) (all areas above) , the Electrochemical Group in the Department of Chemistry (area 3a) and the Electrochemical Group in the Department of Chemical and Process Engineering (area 3b).

Please note, it is University Policy to offer a starting salary equivalent to Level 3.6 (£31,866) to successful applicants who have been awarded, but are yet to receive, their PhD certificate. Once the original PhD certificate has been submitted to the local HR Department, the salary will be increased to Level 4.1 (£32,817).

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Further details:

For more information and to apply online, please download the further details and click on the 'apply online' button above.

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