Sustainable Chemical Technologies

Study mode:On campus Study type:Full-time Languages: English
Local:$ 5.54 k / Year(s) Foreign:$ 19.8 k / Year(s)  
201–250 place StudyQA ranking:3959 Duration:48 months

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In December 2008 the EPSRC awarded us a £7.5m grant to establish a Doctoral Training Centre in Sustainable Chemical Technologies, offering a 4-year integrated PhD programme in Sustainable Chemical Technologies.

At least 12 fully-funded PhD places are available in the Centre each year until 2014. We welcome applications from graduates of Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and related disciplines (such as mathematics, physics and biological sciences) who already have, or expect to obtain, a first or upper second class honours degree and have a strong interest in sustainable technologies.

All students in the Centre receive foundation training to supplement their undergraduate knowledge, as well as training in sustainable chemical technologies and transferable skills. All will conduct high quality and challenging research directed jointly by supervisors from the Departments of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering.


The Integrated PhD in Sustainable Chemical Technologies is a 4-year research degree, split into two main parts:

* Year 1 consists of two small research projects with different research groups within the centre, combined with training in technical aspects of Sustainable Chemical Technologies as well as transferrable skills and business and societal aspects of sustainability;
* Years 2-4 focus primarily on the main PhD project, with some advanced training courses and a range of ongoing supporting activities.

Approximately 75% of your time will be spent on high-quality, interdisciplinary research, with around 15% specialist training in sustainability concepts and 10% transferrable skills training.

In the first year, you will undertake two distinct research projects, one of which will usually (but not always) lead directly into a PhD project. You may defer your final choice of PhD project and supervisor until the end of Year 1 at which point all projects will be confirmed by the Centre Management Board.

The two projects have equal weight in the assessment process. However, the first project will take place during Semesters 1 and 2 while the second must be completed over the summer ("Semester 3"). This is because the majority of training also takes place in Semesters 1 and 2.

All projects will have a lead supervisor from the Departments of Chemical Engineering or Chemistry, and an additional supervisor from those or an appropriate related department, such as Mechanical Engineering or Biochemistry. Your main project will also have input and support from an industrial or international partner.

Project selection
The project selection process begins in the first week of term, and follows the following pattern:

* Supervisors propose projects, and make summaries available online as well as making short presentations there are a large number of potential projects, spread over the full range of our research;
* You then have the opportunity to discuss options with supervisors and research groups and visit their labs we strongly encourage this so that you can make an informed choice;
* You select 4 preferred projects (2 in chemical engineering and 2 in chemistry);
* Projects are then allocated after careful consideration by the management board in many cases it's possible to give you your first choice.

Training & supporting activities
We offer a wide variety of optional courses in areas related to sustainable chemical technologies, on top of mandatory core training which will give you a solid grounding in the basic technical skills required to complete a PhD in the centre.

Supporting activities include:

* Opportunities to undertake an international, industrial or stakeholder internship;
* A strong public engagement programme;
* An annual showcase event;
* Involvement in organization of a seminar series; and
* Participation in international meetings and conferences.

Study environment
The Departments of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering are close to each other on the same campus in modern purpose-build laboratories (having received recent University investment of over £20m). An extensive range of state-of-the-art equipment underpins a dynamic research environment. Postgraduate communities in both departments are vibrant and growing.

As part of the Centre, SusLab and iSusLab provide an attractive and functional working environment supporting a genuine sense of community within the centre.

SusLab is a physical base for the Centre providing flexible accommodation including:

* Desk space for all Year 1 students;
* A hot-desking layout suitable for PhD students, staff and visiting academics to work individually and in small groups;
* An informal discussion and social area; and
* A more formal meeting and training room to accommodate 15 people.

iSusLab provides an intuitive, web-based virtual research environment, allowing students and staff within the centre to easily collaborate and share data with each other and external partners.


Each year until 2013 we are offering at least twelve fully-funded EPSRC PhD studentships with an enhanced stipend (ca. £15,000 tax free pa). These studentships are aimed at graduates of Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and related disciplines who already have, or expect to obtain, a first or upper second class honours degree.

In addition, we encourage applications from students with backgrounds in other areas of engineering and disciplines such as mathematics, physics and biological sciences with an interest in sustainable technologies.

These studentships are subject to the EPSRC student eligibility guidelines, but we can often find funding for excellent students who do not meet those criteria.

Note that overseas students wishing to be considered for the full range of funding options must submit their application by Saturday 31 December 2011 at the latest. Applications from such students are welcome after this date, but funding options will be limited.

All applicants are subject to the University of Bath's standard entry requirements.

What's funded?
Fully-funded EPSRC DTC studentships cover Home/EU fees and provide an enhanced annual stipend. Other levels of funding are available, including full and partial fee waivers.

Once registered, all DTC students will receive a laptop computer, a generous consumables allowance, additional funding to undertake a 3-month internship in the UK or abroad, and an annual travel allowance to attend UK and international meetings.

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