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About the position
The Department of Chemistry has a vacancy for two PhD students within the field of plasmon-assisted chemistry. The earliest start date for the positions will be September 2021.
Each appointment has a duration of 4 years, with 25% teaching duties in agreement with the Department of Chemistry.
The two PhD Fellows will be part of a larger team investigating how metallic nanogaps and optical cavities may be used to control the chemical behaviour of molecules. The first project will be mainly theoretically focused, and will involve ab-initio modelling of molecules inside metallic nanogaps. The second project will be mainly experimentally focused, and will involve the fabrication and chemical application of metallic nanogaps. However, both candidates will be expected to carry out a combination of theoretical and experimental research.
Metallic nanogaps have been extensively researched as essential elements of many nanoscale photonic and electronic devices. Of particular interest is their ability to manipulate light via interactions between photons and surface plasmons, which has been exploited in a variety of applications including nano-lasers, metamaterials and solar cells. One underexplored field of application for plasmonic nanogaps is in chemistry, where their ability to act as highly localised sources of light, heat or energetic electrons and their ability to couple with excited states of molecular systems can be used to induce chemical reactions or modify reaction outcomes. In this proposal we investigate the feasibility of using engineered arrays of metallic nanogaps as tuneable media for controlling chemical reactions via plasmonic and photonic interactions.
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