The Innovation in Materials and Molecular Engineering (IMEM) and Biomaterials, Biomechanics and Tissue Engineering (BBT) research groups from Polytechnic University of Catalonia are looking for a PhD researcher to develop his/her PhD thesis project on the development of multifunctional hybrid hydrogels for bioengineering applications combining theoretical and experimental approaches. The ideal candidate should have a background in chemistry, physics, chemical engineering, physical engineering or related disciplines willing to tackle the project from a theoretical and experimental point of view.
MULTIFUNCTIONAL HYDROGELS FOR WATER PURIFICATION AND TISSUE ENGINEERING APPLICATIONS: A COMBINED THEORETICAL AND EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH
Hydrogels are a promising type of soft materials due to their intrinsic properties like high water contents, high porosity, flexibility or biocompatibility, making them ideal candidates for applications in bioelectronics, water remediation or tissue engineering. However, one of the main drawbacks of hydrogels is their inertness. To address this need and improve their performance, multifunctional nanocomposite hydrogels with the ability to respond to external stimuli like electric and/or magnetic fields are being developed.
This PhD thesis aims to fabricate a new generation of multifunctional and stimuli-responsive (nano)composite hydrogels with thermic, electric and magnetic functionalities for applications in water purification and tissue regeneration. To this end, theoretical and experimental methodologies will be combined to fabricate hydrogels with improved performance for the targeted applications.
Conducting polymer hydrogels (CPHs) and thermosensitive hydrogels (TSHs) are emerging as powerful alternatives for the classical materials usually employed in water purification. TSHs applied for solar-driven water evaporation and desalination are experiencing an increasing interest since 2017. This thesis project aims to promote conditions for water purification, by designing new CPHs electrodes and membranes for ions and molecules separation.
Tissue engineering is another promising field of research for electrically or magnetic-responsive hydrogels as little is known about the effect of these physical stimuli on tissue regeneration. Thus, this thesis will also explore the utility of CPHs with magnetically-controlled electrical conductvity as new materials to induce tissue regeneration using magnetic and/or electric stimulation.
The PhD contract will be for 4 years with a gross salary of 16.972 € the first and second year, 18.184 € the third year and 22.730 € the fourth.
How to apply?
Applications must include:
- Cover letter detailing your motivation
- CV with a list of achievements.
- Description of the marks achieved in the Graduation and Master studies
The PhD thesis will be carried out between the research groups Innovation in Materials and Molecular Engineering-Bioamaterials for Regenerative Therapies (IMEM-BRT) (Chemical Engineering department) and Biomaterials, Biomechanics and Tissue Engineering (BBT) (Materials Science and Engineering department), from Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, and under the supervision of:
Application Deadline: May 31st, 2022
Starting Date: 1st-15th July, 2022
Information about the research groups can be found at:
Polytechnic University of Catalonia is an equal opportunities employer and is committed to the employment policies, procedures and practices which do not discriminate on grounds such as gender, civil status, family status, age, disability, race, religious belief, sexual orientation or membership of the travelling community.