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The respective project is part of the Dutch Polymer Institute (DPI) Performance Polymers cluster and named B-CRYSP, derived from the project title: Biobased crystal polarization and semi-aromaticity for high polymer dielectrics.
To reduce carbon emissions, electrification innovations are paralleled by a sustainable selection of alternative, biobased resources. To meet existing expectations of product designers in performance, substitution of fossil-based resources is not straightforward. Biobased plastics are regularly considered inferior. Based on an in-depth understanding on the translation of properties across multiple length-scales down to molecular design, we demonstrate the opposite. We aim to use the unique nature of selected biobased building blocks introducing crystal polarity for increased electrical performance and safety of plastics in advanced and sustainable electronic systems. What chemical pathways to follow, and how to design the crystalline phase?
It will be your task to elucidate the effect of crystal polarization next to the fundamental modes of polarizability on the electrical properties of the polycondensates, specifically polyamides, synthesized. Careful selection of monomers and polymerization strategies provide control over the design of thermal relaxations that are trivial to the performance in electronic devices. The methodological approach in molecular design matches the supervisors’ joint research lines to position biobased, potentially circular, polymeric materials among the existing construction materials. The route is to transfer unique chemical functionality of biomolecules across multiple length-scales to enhanced and new materials functions.
As a PhD student you will be appointed at the Aachen-Maastricht Institute for Biobased Materials of Maastricht University, which is part of the Faculty of Science and Engineering. You will work at the interface of the polymer chemistry group of Associate Professor Katrien Bernaerts and the Macromolecular Physics and Technology group of Associate Professor Jules Harings. The principle investigators are tied in a long-lasting and effective collaboration. The primary location of the research is at the Brightlands Chemelot Campus in Geleen, the Netherlands.
The PhD student:
Maastricht University is renowned for its unique, innovative, problem-based learning system, which is characterized by a small-scale and student-oriented approach. Research at UM is characterized by a multidisciplinary and thematic approach, and is concentrated in research institutes and schools. Maastricht University has around 22,000 students and about 5,000 employees. Reflecting the university's strong international profile, a fair amount of both students and staff are from abroad. The university hosts 6 faculties: Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences, Faculty of Law, School of Business and Economics, Faculty of Science and Engineering, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience.
The Faculty of Science and Engineering (FSE) is home to several outstanding departments and institutions covering education and research in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) as well as the liberal arts and sciences.
The Aachen-Maastricht Institute for Biobased Materials (AMIBM) is a department of the Faculty of Science and Engineering (FSE) at Maastricht University, located on the Brightlands Chemelot Campus in Geleen. AMIBM is a European cross-border research institute established by Maastricht University and RWTH Aachen University (Germany), focusing on developing advanced biobased materials. The mission of AMIBM is “ground-breaking conversion of biomass to biobased materials and into product applications”. AMIBM promotes excellent multidisciplinary research in the field of biobased materials, by training Ph.D. students with the multiple skills needed to be future leaders in the field, and creating the research breakthroughs that will enable the utilization of sustainable and renewable materials for advanced materials applications. The multidisciplinary team draws together scientists with expertise in molecular and applied biotechnology, organic chemistry, polymer chemistry, polymer physics, polymer engineering, biomedical materials, and sustainability assessment.
AMIBM is embedded in a lively, entrepreneurial, and creative working environment at the Brightlands Chemelot Campus in Geleen (the Netherlands), one of the largest chemical and materials communities in Europe.
More information: www.amibm.org.
Research group Sustainability of Chemicals and Materials.
Maastricht University (UM)
Urmonderbaan 22, 6167 RD, Geleen
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