Research Associate in Lignin-Derived Carbon Fibres at Imperial College London

Location: South Kensington & White City, London

Job Summary

Producing sustainable materials from widely available and abundant resources is a prerequisite to securing the supply chain for building sustainable technology and reaching the net zero targets for 2050. One underutilised resource contained in almost all dry land plants is Lignin.

The Department of Chemical Engineering is seeking a Research Associate to focus on the design of sustainable carbon fibres from lignin using either electrospinning or solution spinning and their application to the production of composites and electrodes to be used is energy storage and conversion technologies such as Na ion batteries, supercapacitors or electrode supports for the deposition of different active sites used in electrocatalytic applications such as electrolysers and fuel cells. These applications will be pursued collaboratively with other postdocs working within the project.

This is a unique chance to contribute to the decarbonisation of the UK economy across sectors by helping the discovery of low-cost sustainable carbon fibers for different applications.

We are looking for a motivated research associate with research experience electrospinning, solution spinning, carbon fibre production, carbon materials characterisation, including spectroscopic analysis, microscopy and testing of fibre mechanical properties. The researchers should be able to work in a large and diverse team collaboratively across departments, faculties and universities. This project is funded under a recent EPSRC funded programme grant (EP/W031019/1) to develop the next generation of sustainable materials, in a collaboration between Imperial College London, University of Cambridge and University of Bristol.

The ideal candidate will have deep theoretical knowledge and practical experience in lignin chemistry and in carbon fibers production and characterisation and also preferably electrochemistry including batteries, supercapacitors or electrocatalysis. Good communication skills are required along with the ability to write high quality publications and work collaboratively.

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