Research Fellow  – AR1938ML

Vacancy Description

School of Chemistry, Salary: £32,004 – £34,576 per annum, Start Date: As soon as possible, Fixed Term: 12 months initially, with possible extension to 3 or 4 years is anticipated

 We have an opening for a Research Fellow to work on materials processing of energy materials. This position is available for early start or later by mutual arrangement.  We would expect you to have a PhD in chemistry, materials, physics or engineering and preferably relevant experience relating to metal oxides in some of the following fields: ceramic processing, high temperature electrochemistry, photoelectrochemistry and sol gel processing.

Informal enquiries to Professor John Irvine, email:

The University of St Andrews is committed to promoting equality of opportunity for all, which is further demonstrated through its working on the Gender and Race Equality Charters and being awarded the Athena SWAN award for women in science, HR Excellence in Research Award and the LGBT Charter;

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Two PhD studentships are available in the Irvine group at St Andrews University

  1. Production of synthetic diesel via CO2 Electrolysis

Project Description

The utilisation of carbon dioxide to produce green fuels from renewable electricity is an important research challenge for society today. A particularly attractive route is via solid satte electrochemisistry. Here we seek to develop and study new electrolcatalysts for the electrochemical synthesis of synthetic diesel. Initially catalytic activity will be examined, using well developed techniques. Once a set of potential candidates is found, then their electrocatalytic activity and potential use in SOEC systems will be studied. Small cells will be fabricated and tested as potential electrochemical systems, and their activity, resistivity and stability will be studied.


X. Yue, J.T.S. Irvine, Journal of Materials Chemistry A, 2017, 5, 7081 – 7090
J-H. Myung, D. Neagu, D.N. Miller & JTS. Irvine, Nature, 2016. 537, 528-531

2. Search for New Energy Materials

 In this project we wish to focus on curiosity driven solid state chemistry.  The project would be grounded in synthesis of new solid state materials, characterisation, manipulation of defect chemistry and evaluation for an energy related application such fuel cells, batteries or photocatalysis.  The approach that we will follow is the synthesis of ternary metal oxides doped with carbide ions, prepared under carefully controlled conditions.  Phase purity will be assessed by XRD, TG and electron microscopy.  Samples will be characterised in terms of electrical and optical properties and structure: composition: property relations investigated

N. Miller, A.K. Azad, H. Delpouve, L. Quazuguel, J. Zhou, A. Sinha, P. Wormald, JTS. Irvine. J. Mater. Chem. A. 2016, 4, 5730
Sinha, DN. Miller, JTS. Irvine. J. Mater. Chem. A. 2016. 4, 11117 – 11123

Funding Notes

Fully funded covering stipend and fees for UK an EU resident students.  Industry funded, there will be close links to industry during course of the PhD

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