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PhD Studentship: Air quality and health impact of primary semi-volatile and secondary particles and their abatement (AEROSOLS)


Location:  UK Other
Closing Date:  Friday 15 December 2023
Reference:  SCI224

Supervisor: Dr Salim Alam, Secondary Supervisor: Dr LIz Bailey

Subject Area: Air Quality, Pollution, Analytical Chemistry, Emissions, Mechanical Engineering, Aerosol science

Research Description:

Given the rising demand for transport and reliance on oil, urgent and collective measures are essential to reduce emissions and minimize their environmental and health effects. Emissions of ultrafine particles and the formation of secondary aerosols through atmospheric processing are believed to be the most detrimental pollutants in terms of public health. Significant uncertainties remain about their atmospheric behaviours, such as their mechanisms in smog formation. AEROSOLS is a 36-month cross-disciplinary project aimed at developing reliable and clear methods for measuring and modelling volatile and semi-volatile emissions and understanding their associated risks. This research will propose technological and legislative monitoring/reduction mechanisms to manage/reduce these emissions, to improve air quality and public health.
 The aim of this project is to (i) quantify volatile and semi-volatile emissions, abatement, and dynamics within the vehicle system under real-driving-emission test conditions, on roads and in labs, and (ii) characterising secondary aerosol formation and atmospheric evolution mechanisms employing various instrumental techniques and chemical modelling.
 Advanced training will be provided to run a suite of analytical and environmental instrumentation and the associated software solutions at both the University of Nottingham, University of Birmingham, Markes International and SepSolve Analytical. The candidate will have the opportunity to spend several weeks per year at the facilities of the industrial partners in Bridgend and Peterborough, UK, and collaborate with external scientists and attend international conferences. They will also have an opportunity to investigate atmospheric processing of volatile emissions at the Saphir atmospheric simulation chamber, Julich, Germany.

Award Start Date: 01/02/2024

Duration of Award: 48

Terms and Conditions:  36 months funded

Applicant Qualification Requirements

Applicants should have an interest in atmospheric science, environmental science, chemistry, physics or engineering. They should hold, or be expected to obtain, a minimum of a UK Honours degree at 2:1 or equivalent in a physical or environmental science subject. Candidates with an additional qualification (i.e. Masters) will be looked on favourably. Experience of laboratory and/or modelling will be desirable.

How to Apply

Cover letter explaining why you feel you are a suitable candidate (maximum 1 page), alongside a curriculum vitae should be emailed to, after which a formal application can be made via the University website:

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