EPSRC and SFI Centre for Doctoral Training in the Advanced Characterisation of Materials (CDT-ACM)

Lead Research Organisation: Imperial College London
Department Name: Materials


Materials characterisation is critical to the understanding of key processes in a range of functional and structural materials that have applications across several industrial sectors. These sectors include strategic priorities such as discovery of functional materials, energy storage and conversion and materials manufacturing, and healthcare. Materials characterisation is increasing in complexity, driven by a need to understand how materials properties evolve in operando, over their full lifetimes and over all levels of their hierarchy to predict their ultimate performance. The new generation of materials characterisation techniques will require: 1. Greater spatial and chemical resolution; 2. Correlated information that bridges nano- and centimeter -length scales, to relate the nanoscale chemistry and structure of interest to their intrinsically multi-scale surroundings, and 3. Temporal information about the kinetics of materials behaviour in extreme environments. The CDT will train students in a range of complementary techniques, ensuring that they have the breadth and depth of knowledge to make informed choices when considering key characterisation challenges. Our CDT will use an integrated training approach, to ensure that the technical content is well aligned with the research objectives of each student. This training in specific research needs will be informed by our industry partners and will reflect the suite of research projects that the students will undertake. Our portfolio of research projects will provide an innovative and ambitious research and training experience that will enhance the UK's long-term capabilities across high value industrial sectors.

Additionally, our students will receive training in a range of topics that will support their research progress including in science communication, research ethics, career development planning and data science. These additional courses will be distributed throughout the 4-year PhD programme and will ensure that a cohesive training plan is in place for each student, supported by cohort mentors. Each student graduating from the CDT-ACM will leave will a through understanding of the key challenges presented by materials characterisation problems, and have the tools to provide creative solutions to these. They will have first hand experience of collaborating with industry partners and will be well placed to address the strategic needs of the UK Industrial Strategy.

Our training will be developed in collaboration with leading partner organisations, and include international collaboration with the AMBER centre, a Science Foundation Ireland centre, as well as national facilities such as Diamond Light Source. Innovative on-line and remote instrument access will be developed that will enable both UK and Irish cohorts to interact seamlessly. Industry partners will be closely involved in designing and delivering training activities including at summer schools, and will include entrepreneurship activities.
Overall the 70 students that will be trained over the lifetime of the CDT will receive excellent tuition and research training at two world leading institutions with unique characterisation abilities.

Planned Impact

The production and processing of materials accounts for 15% of UK GDP and generates exports valued at £50bn annually, with UK materials related industries having a turnover of £197bn/year. It is, therefore, clear that the success of the UK economy is linked to the success of high value materials manufacturing, spanning a broad range of industrial sectors. In order to remain competitive and innovate in these sectors it is necessary to understand fundamental properties and critical processes at a range of length scales and dynamically and link these to the materials' performance. It is in this underpinning space that the CDT-ACM fits.

The impact of the CDT will be wide reaching, encompassing all organisations who research, manufacture or use advanced materials in sectors ranging from energy and transport to healthcare and the environment. Industry will benefit from the supply of highly skilled research scientists and engineers with the training necessary to advance materials development in all of these crucial areas. UK and international research facilities (Diamond, ISIS, ILL etc.) will benefit greatly from the supply of trained researchers who have both in-depth knowledge of advanced characterisation techniques and a broad understanding of materials and their properties. UK academia will benefit from a pipeline of researchers trained in state-of the art techniques in world leading research groups, who will be in prime positions to win prestigious fellowships and lectureships. From a broader perspective, society in general will benefit from the range of planned outreach activities, such as the Mary Rose Trust, the Royal Society Summer Exhibition and visits to schools. These activities will both inform the general public and inspire the next generation of scientists.

The cohort based training offered by the CDT-ACM will provide the next generation of research scientists and engineers who will pioneer new research techniques, design new multi-instrument workflows and advance our knowledge in diverse fields. We will produce 70 highly qualified and skilled researchers who will support the development of new technologies, in for instance the field of electric vehicles, an area of direct relevance to the UK industrial impact strategy.
In summary, the CDT will address a skills gap that has arisen through the rapid development of new characterisation techniques; therefore, it will have a positive impact on industry, research facilities and academia and, consequently, wider society by consolidating and strengthening UK leadership in this field.



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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
EP/S023259/1 01/10/2019 31/03/2028
2296015 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2019 30/09/2023 Alessandra Hausmann
2253114 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2019 31/01/2024 Eva Aw
2296020 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2019 30/09/2023 Toby Wong
2269391 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2019 30/09/2023 Azeezat Ali
2253179 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2019 31/12/2023 Samia Said
2296082 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2019 31/12/2023 Claudia Tatiana Santos Maldonado
2253916 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2019 31/12/2023 Olivia Westhead
2270525 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2019 31/12/2023 Maria Victoria Garcia Giner
2296089 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2019 30/09/2023 Mengnan Wang
2322881 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2019 31/03/2024 Jamie Bragg
2296009 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2019 31/12/2023 David Alexander Ramsay
2270518 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2019 15/12/2023 Angus Pedersen
2270505 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2019 30/09/2023 Catherine Saunders
2327795 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2019 01/10/2023 Seán Kavanagh
2296119 Studentship EP/S023259/1 21/10/2019 03/10/2024 Mitra Ashrafi Golshan
2421786 Studentship EP/S023259/1 28/09/2020 30/09/2024 Adair Nicolson
2435153 Studentship EP/S023259/1 28/09/2020 30/09/2024 Samyog Adhikari
2421790 Studentship EP/S023259/1 28/09/2020 30/09/2024 Kieran Spruce
2421743 Studentship EP/S023259/1 28/09/2020 30/09/2024 Rebecca Conybeare
2421798 Studentship EP/S023259/1 28/09/2020 30/09/2024 Esther Osarfo-Mensah
2440069 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2020 30/09/2024 Max Trouton
2447858 Studentship EP/S023259/1 05/10/2020 04/10/2024 Amanz Azaden
2447873 Studentship EP/S023259/1 05/10/2020 04/10/2024 Martin Holicky
2444037 Studentship EP/S023259/1 05/10/2020 04/10/2024 Alexandra Austin
2421742 Studentship EP/S023259/1 05/10/2020 04/10/2024 Adila Islam
2447862 Studentship EP/S023259/1 05/10/2020 04/10/2024 Jessica Tjandra
2444079 Studentship EP/S023259/1 05/10/2020 04/10/2024 Matthew Hamer
2451066 Studentship EP/S023259/1 02/11/2020 01/11/2024 Sivakkumaran Sukumaran
2592772 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2021 30/09/2025 Andreea Predila
2619715 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2021 30/09/2025 Emma Bryan
2592954 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2021 30/09/2025 Alexander Moriarty
2592715 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2021 31/03/2026 Michal Pawlus
2592990 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2021 30/09/2025 Nikola Kolev
2619720 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2021 30/09/2025 Felix Mildner
2619705 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2021 30/09/2025 Amy Monahan
2622067 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2021 30/09/2025 Bradley Francis Lewis
2592942 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2021 30/09/2025 Jacob Davies
2621977 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2021 30/09/2025 Rory Rose
2593003 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2021 30/09/2025 Adriana-Monica Radu
2620644 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2021 30/09/2025 Annie May Clarke
2644860 Studentship EP/S023259/1 04/10/2021 30/09/2025 Louis Minion
2726706 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2022 30/09/2026 Eleanor Teather
2825148 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2022 30/09/2026 Mashu Harada
2803270 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2022 30/09/2026 Ronan Docherty
2825209 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2022 30/09/2026 Lukas Worch
2726743 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2022 30/09/2026 Corrin Blake
2734379 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2022 30/09/2026 Isabel Antony
2825136 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2022 30/09/2026 Mihai-Andru Angheliu
2825169 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2022 30/09/2026 Genoveva Olazabal
2741931 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2022 30/09/2026 Carolina Borrelli
2825214 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2022 30/09/2026 Geri Topore
2726660 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2022 30/09/2026 Zifa Zuhair
2825196 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2022 30/09/2026 William Rodriguez-Kazeem
2825192 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2022 30/09/2026 Sofia Patri
2729928 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2022 30/09/2026 Daniel Prestwood
2825212 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2022 30/09/2026 Oliver Waszkiewicz
2888913 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2023 30/09/2027 Rahil Haria
2895377 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2023 30/09/2027 Sharukaa Uthayasekaran
2888456 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2023 30/09/2027 Harry Heptinstall
2888898 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2023 30/09/2027 Enny Tran
2888859 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2023 30/09/2027 Rose Newman
2879451 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2023 30/09/2027 Matilde Brunetta
2879388 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2023 30/09/2027 Syed Gilani
2879460 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2023 30/09/2027 Donagh Mc Ginley
2888930 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2023 30/09/2027 Yifeng Wang
2881941 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2023 30/09/2027 Sophia Linssen-Pitsaros
2879454 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2023 30/09/2027 Oisin FitzGerald
2879895 Studentship EP/S023259/1 01/10/2023 30/09/2027 Shaun Mohamed Rafi Boodram
2879438 Studentship EP/S023259/1 30/09/2027 30/09/2027 Oscar Langdon