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Investigating properties of colloid particle films at interfaces to develop functional emulsions and microcapsules


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Key facts

Type of research degree
Application deadline
Friday 28 January 2022
Project start date
Monday 4 July 2022
Country eligibility
International (open to all nationalities, including the UK)
Source of funding
External organisation
Dr Olivier Cayre
School of Chemical and Process Engineering
<h2 class="heading hide-accessible">Summary</h2>

Our collaborative team between the Universities of Birmingham, Cambridge and Leeds has recently been granted funding from the UK research council, EPSRC, for a project entitled Novel microcapsule designs and manufacturing processes. In Leeds, we are looking for an enthusiastic and motivated PhD student to work in collaboration with the post-doctoral research assistant employed on this project to develop fundamental understanding of some of the colloidal systems developed as part of this project.<br /> <br /> The PhD studentship is fully funded (2/3 by our industrial partner, Givaudan, and 1/3 by the University of Leeds) and will involve close collaboration with Givaudan.<br /> The PhD project will specifically look to further our fundamental understanding of colloid particle and nanoparticle films used to stabilise emulsions, themselves precursors for microcapsules. These interfacial films will initially be made from a combination of inorganic particles and polymers and we will study the particle adsorption and the properties of the resulting films, including their elasticity, their adsorption strength and their rheological properties. We will then use this knowledge to develop improved interfacial films and to use them for stabilising emulsions.

<h2 class="heading hide-accessible">Full description</h2>

<p>Particulate products contribute &pound;50 Billion per year to the UK economy. Enabling targeted functionality and enhanced processability expands the applicability of such products. Encapsulation is one route to the desired smart particulate materials and this project aims to develop both new energy-efficient ways of producing microcapsules on industrial scales, and new microcapsule designs with shells that are environmentally-friendly, possess controllable breakage stresses, enhanced active ingredient (AI) retention properties and improved deposition on target surfaces. Our EPSRC-funded project entitled &lsquo;<a href="">Novel microcapsule designs and manufacturing processes</a>&rsquo;&nbsp;will allow for drastically improved microcapsule efficiency and sustainability under an increasingly stringent regulatory environment, thus leading to both expanding the use of microcapsules across formulated products and as a result improving the efficacy of AIs such as pesticides, fragrance oils, pharmaceutical drugs.</p> <p>In Leeds, under the supervision of <a href="">Dr Olivier Cayre</a>, the PhD student will integrate the <a href="">Colloid and Polymer Engineering Group</a> in the <a href="">School of Chemical and Process Engineering</a>. The role holder will work alongside a post-doctoral resarch associate (PDRA) and will focus on working in collaboration with Givaudan to develop a fundamental understanding of interfacial nanoparticle films and the emulsions they stabilise in order to better control the production of low permeability microcapsules. The PhD student will have plenty of opportunity to also interact with the other PhD students,&nbsp;PDRAs and supervisors in Leeds but also in Cambridge and Birmingham and with the several other industrial partners that are supporting our EPSRC-funded project.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p>

<h2 class="heading">How to apply</h2>

<p>Formal applications for research degree study should be made online through the&nbsp;<a href="">University&#39;s website</a>. Please state clearly in the Planned Course of Study that you are applying for <em><strong>PHD Chemical &amp; Process Engineering FT</strong></em> and in the research information section&nbsp;that the research degree you wish to be considered for is&nbsp;<strong><em>Studying interfacial particulate films for developing inorganic microcapsules</em></strong>&nbsp;as well as&nbsp;<a href="">Dr Olivier&nbsp;Cayre</a> as your proposed supervisor.</p> <p>If English is not your first language, you must provide evidence that you meet the University&#39;s minimum English language requirements (below).</p> <p>&nbsp;</p>

<h2 class="heading heading--sm">Entry requirements</h2>

Applicants to research degree programmes should normally have at least a first class or an upper second class British Bachelors Honours degree (or equivalent) in an appropriate discipline. The criteria for entry for some research degrees may be higher, for example, several faculties, also require a Masters degree. Applicants are advised to check with the relevant School prior to making an application. Applicants who are uncertain about the requirements for a particular research degree are advised to contact the School or Graduate School prior to making an application.

<h2 class="heading heading--sm">English language requirements</h2>

The minimum English language entry requirement for research postgraduate research study is an IELTS of 6.0 overall with at least 5.5 in each component (reading, writing, listening and speaking) or equivalent. The test must be dated within two years of the start date of the course in order to be valid. Some schools and faculties have a higher requirement.

<h2 class="heading">Funding on offer</h2>

<p>A highly competitive School of Chemical &amp; Process Engineering Studentship in partnership with&nbsp;Givaudan,&nbsp;consisting of the award of fees with a maintenance grant of &pound;15,609 in&nbsp;session 2021/22&nbsp;for 3.5 years.<br /> <br /> This opportunity is open to all applicants.&nbsp; All candidates will be placed into the School of Chemical &amp; Process Engineering/Givaudin Studentship Competition and selection is based on academic merit.</p> <p>Please refer to the <a href="">UKCISA</a> website for information regarding Fee Status for Non-UK Nationals starting from September/October 2021.</p>

<h2 class="heading">Contact details</h2>

<p>For further information regarding the project, please contact Dr Olivier Cayre<br /> e: <a href="">o.j.cayre</a><a href=""></a>, t: +44 (0)113 343 4939.</p> <p>For further information regarding your application, please contact Doctoral College Admissions:<br /> e:&nbsp;<a href=""></a>, t: +44 (0)113 343 5057.</p>

<h3 class="heading heading--sm">Linked research areas</h3>