Research Assistant Marie Curie Early Stage Researcher

Imperial College London has an opening postdoctoral scholar position in catalysis. The funding allows successful candidates to work for four years in the first instance. The deadline for applying is December 18, 2018.

This research assistant will work as a Marie Curie Early Stage Researcher as part of the MATHEGRAM MSCA funded by the EU.

MATHEGRAM aims to improve our understanding of the thermomechanical behaviour of granular materials.

1) How does temperature increase within granular materials without the application of external heating sources?

2) How does temperature affect the physical properties of granular materials? 3) How can the thermomechanical properties of granular materials be effectively utilised in various applications, e.g. additive manufacturing, powder coating, sintering and catalysis?

MATHEGRAM will deliver a timely, concerted research and training programme to address these challenging questions, bringing together a multi-disciplinary and inter-sectorial consortium consisting of 10 beneficiaries (i.e. full partners), and 5 partner organisations. The MATHEGRAM vision is to develop robust numerical models and novel experimental techniques that can predict the performance and measure the properties of granular materials at different temperatures, so that they can be effectively used in various industries.

The researcher will use the recently developed temperature-controlled equipment available at IC to examine the macromechanics of various granular materials, comprised of base materials with differing thermal conductivities, under controlled deformation. These experimental equipment include triaxial cells and oedometers that enable independent variation of stress and temperature. Two of the triaxial cells have a set of specially-designed pedestals and top cap that can be used to apply a temperature gradient across the cell to determine the material's thermal conductivity and response. Materials with simple geometries, well suited to accurate modelling in Discrete Element Method modelling, will also be considered and the thermal properties will be varied using particles of different materials. The research will involve collaboration with a second MATHEGRAM researcher who will work on Discrete Element Modelling.

This is a fixed term appointment for up to 36 months.

To take initiatives in the planning of research and work as an independent researcher. To develop, implement and verify experimental procedures for thermal testing of materials, including, but not limited to, sample preparation. To develop robust and efficient approaches for analysing experimental data. To link appropriately the experimental results with ongoing numerical simulations at Imperial College London To conduct and plan own scientific work with appropriate supervision. To maintain accurate and complete records of all findings and equipment development. To interact positively with the MATHEGRAM community. To engage with the MATHEGRAM mobility programme which will require a secondment outside of Imperial. To assist in organizing project workshops and other MATHEGRAM community events. To present findings to colleagues and at conferences, workshops, and to industry. To promote the reputation of the Geotechnics Section, the Department and the College To actively participate in the research programme of the Geotechnics Section. To participate in Group research meetings and internal seminars. To collaborate with other allied scientists within Imperial College and elsewhere in London and abroad, as appropriate. To assist in the supervision of undergraduate and postgraduate research students. Youmust have a relevant engineering or scientific education leading to either a Bachelors or Masters degree (or equivalent) in civil, mechanical or chemical engineering, materials science or physics.

1. Researchers must be 'early-stage researchers', i.e. at the date of recruitment (the date on whichtheir employment on the project starts)bein the first four years (fulltime equivalent research experience) oftheir research careers and have not been awarded a doctoral degree.

‘Full-time equivalent research experience’ is measured from the date when the researcher obtained the degree entitling him/her to embark on a doctorate (either in the country in which the degree was obtained or in the country in which the researcher is recruited or from where he/she is seconded) - even if a doctorate was never started or envisaged.

2. Researchers may not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in the country of their host organisation for more than 12 months in the three years immediately before the date of recruitment.

For informal enquiries about the post please contact Dr David Taborda at

Further information about the post is available in the job description.

Any queries regarding the application process should be directed to Lucy Chivers at


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