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Research Fellow in Energy Materials - Chemistry

Department of Chemistry

Location:  Guildford
Salary:  £32,817 to £35,845 Per Annum
Fixed Term Contract
Post Type:  Full Time
Advert Placed:  Wednesday 20 November 2019
Closing Date:  Wednesday 01 January 2020
Interview Date:  Wednesday 08 January 2020
Reference:  091919

Applications are invited for a Research Fellow in the Electrochemical Energy Materials group in the Department of Chemistry. The position is funded by an EU Horizon 2020 consortium grant called SELECTCO2 'Selective Electrochemical Reduction of Carbon Dioxide to High Value Chemicals'. The consortium will be led by Prof. Brian Seger at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU Physics). The project involves the development of devices that will electrochemically convert carbon dioxide selectively into carbon monoxide, ethylene or ethanol. Carbon Dioxide Utilisation (CDU) is a rapidly growing research field aimed at being part of the solution to mitigate climate change.

The Electrochemical Energy Materials group at the University of Surrey has specific interests in the synthesis, characterisation and small-scale device testing of novel, high-performance ion-exchange membranes for use in a variety of sustainable electrochemical technologies (fuel cells, electrolysers, reverse electrodialysis and metal-air batteries).

The Research Fellow will be tasked with synthesising a new generation of radiation-grafted anion-exchange membranes (AEM) that are specifically tailored for use in devices that electrochemically reduce carbon dioxide into high value chemicals. The project will involve a wide range of characterisation techniques including: Raman spectro-microscopy, solid-state NMR, analytical titrations, thermo-mechanical analyses, measurement of ionic conductivities and water uptakes.

The candidate must be prepared to undertake an overseas trip at least once per year and to help supervise undergraduate final year students who will work on related projects. The research fellow will also be tasked with synthesising large batches of AEMs for distribution to other research parties to maximise impact and the production of additional high-quality publications.

This is a three-year position. The preferred start date would be before the 20th January 2020, although a later start may be possible on request. A project consortium meeting is scheduled for 27th January 2020 at DTU (Copenhagen, Denmark) and it would be beneficial if the Research Fellow attended this meeting.

Candidates must hold (or be close to completion of) a PhD in Chemistry or Materials Sciences. Prior experience of polymer synthesis and characterisation is desirable. Candidates should apply on-line and provide both a curriculum vitae (including a publication list) and a 1 page statement of research interests.

As part of your application, please also upload two letters of recommendation as supporting documents.

Prospective applicants are encouraged to contact Prof. John Varcoe ( for further information.

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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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