PhD Studentship in Modelling the Effect of The Chemical Matrix-CNT Interactions on The Composite Electrical Properties, Portugal
Marie Curie Initial Training Network CONTACT(FP7-PEOPLE-ITN-2008-238363) for the tailored supply-chain development of CNT-filled composites with improved mechanical and electrical properties.
I3N – Institute for Nanostructures, Nanomodelling and Nanofabrication, University of Minho, Portugal
Modelling the effect of the chemical matrix-CNT interactions on the composite electrical properties
Starting date: 4th January 2011
Marie Curie Initial Training Networks (ITNs) are joint research and training projects funded by the European Commission. Funding is provided for researchers from both inside and outside Europe to carry out individual project work in a European country other than their own.
The “CONTACT” ITN is made up of 10 partners (coordinated by the Fraunhofer ICT in Germany), and will recruit a total of 15 postgraduates and 3 post docs for project work lasting for 1-3 years. The aim of the project is the tailored industrial supply-chain development of CNT-filled polymer composites with improved mechanical and electrical properties. Project work in the network will include the optimisation of CNT synthesis and functionalisation, dispersion in thermoplastics and thermosets, the processing of CNT compounds, modelling, characterisation and application.
This subproject will be carried out by one early-stage researcher at I3N over a period of 28 months.
The aim of this project is two-fold:
– to use molecular dynamics/quantum mechanics to calculate the effect of doping, functionalization and covalent bonding with various polymers affects the electrical properties of individual CNTs;
– to develop mesoscopic models which incorporate this atomic-level information and to use these models to investigate how the electrical response of composite materials depends on CNT dispersion.
This project will be carried out in parallel with other research projects in the same programme, e.g. “CNT functionalization” and “CNT modification”, providing the necessary atomic-scale information to interpret experimental results and to define the most promising
experiments to be performed.
This project will involve the following steps:
1. Validating the quantum mechanics/molecular dynamics code to be used to investigate the atomic and molecular scale properties of CNTs. To do so we will investigate the electrical properties of defect-free CNTs of different length, chirality and radius and will compare our results with existing experimental and theoretical results.
2. Determining how structural defects, doping, functionalization and covalent bonding with semiconducting or insulating polymers affects the electrical properties (charge distribution, electron affinity, ionization energy, electrical conductivity) of individual
3. Writing a computer code to develop a mesoscopic model of polymer-CNT composite that incorporates the spatial distribution of CNTs and the relevant atomic-level information obtained in the previous steps and systematic investigation of how the electrical properties of the composite are affected by CNT dispersion, concentration, orientation and type of matrix polymer.
Qualifications / experience:
– Early-stage researcher (in the first four years (full-time equivalent) of his/her research career, measured from the date when he/she obtained the degree which would formally entitle him/her to embark on a doctorate)
– Degree in Chemistry, Physics, Material Science, Polymer Science or equivalent
– The applicant can be of any nationality except Portuguese
– The applicant must not have resided or carried out his/her main activity (work, studies etc.) in Portugal for more than 12 months in the past three years.
For further details about eligibility, please check the Marie Curie website:
How to apply
Please send your CV by post or e-mail to the following address, quoting the reference “CONTACT-I3N-ESR2″:
Dr. Ferrie W.J. van Hattum
I3N – Institute for Nanostructures, Nanomodelling and nanofabrication
Department of Polymer Engineering
University of Minho
Campus de Azurém
Tel.: +351 253 510 334/337
Application Deadline : 15 October 2010