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School of Engineering and Materials Science Research Studentships

Multifunctional polymer composites for future energy efficient manufacturing

Supervisors: Han ZHANG

Application Deadline: 16-07-2021

Smart polymer materials and high performance composites are increasingly being used in aerospace, automotive, and in renewable energy sectors. Do you want to be part of the next generation of polymer and composite materials, contributing to the development of futuristic performances like integrated sensory networks for online structural health monitoring, inspired by our nerve system, more environmentally friendly de-icing for aircraft and wind turbines without the use of any solvents, and capability to achieve energy efficient manufacturing towards a more sustainable future?

By joining the Polymers and Composites group at Queen Mary, you will be able to turn these ideas into reality, with strong training and access to processing equipment of both thermoplastic and thermoset (nano)composites, as well as advanced characterisation techniques like in-situ sensing measurements. From the design and processing, to testing of the polymer (nano)composites, you will be a core part of the process to realise these integrated functionalities for future materials.

You will need to have a basic knowledge of polymers and composites, preferably on polymer processing, polymer extrusion and compression moulding, materials characterisation, and nanomaterials like carbon nanotubes and graphene nanoplatelets. Experience in using software like LabVIEW for data acquisition and analysis, and knowledge on smart materials with self-regulating heating capabilities as well as a good knowledge of polymer physics, are desirable.

Applicants are required to submit a brief description (as part of personal statement) to explain why you are the ideal candidate for this role, and how this PhD will help your career in the future.


PhD Research Studentship Details 

  • Available to Home applicants only. 

  • Applicant required to start in September 2021. 

  • The studentship arrangement will cover home tuition fees and provide an annual stipend for up to three years (Currently set for 2021/22 as £17,609). 

  • The minimum requirement for this studentship opportunity is a good Honours degree (minimum 2(i) honours or equivalent) or MSc/MRes in a relevant discipline. 

  • If English is not your first language you will require a valid English certificate equivalent to IELTS 6.5+ overall with a minimum score of 6.0 in Writing and 5.5 in all sections (Reading, Listening, Speaking). 

  • Please note that this studentship is only available to Home applicants. (See: details) 


Supervisor Contact Details:

For informal enquiries about this position, please contact Dr Han Zhang

Tel: 020 7882 2726    E-mail:

Application Method:

To apply for this studentship and for entry on to the Materials Science programme (Full Time) please follow the instructions detailed on the following webpage:

Research degrees in Materials:


Further Guidance:


Please be sure to include a reference to ‘2021 SEMS HZ’ to associate your application with this studentship opportunity.