PhD Scholarship in Computational Soft Condensed Matter Physics

Undertake a project in computational modelling of crystallisation inhibitors in aqueous solutions using phase field and molecular dynamics methods.

This scholarship provides an opportunity for a capable and enthusiastic student to work on an Australian Research Council funded project titled “Rational design of new synthetic antifreeze molecules for cryopreservation”.

The research will involve collaboration with an organic chemistry group led by Dr. Brendan Wilkinson (University of New England), an experimental soft condensed matter group led by Prof. Gary Bryant (RMIT University) and an international authority on phase-field computational methods, Prof. Ken Elder (Oakland University, USA). The aim of the project is to use phase-field methods to model the inhibition of crystallisation in aqueous solutions to reduce cell damage in cryopreservation and guide the design of new, synthetic cryoprotectant compounds. Computational results will be validated by comparison with experiments. The Computational Thermal and Statistical Physics group, within the physics discipline of the School of Science at RMIT University, has access to excellent computing facilities and interacts with a lively and stimulating local community of computational and theoretical researchers, with ample opportunities for learning and the exchange of ideas.

$35,900 per year, including a top-up above the standard RMIT scholarship of $5,000 per year, for a maximum of 3 years.

The applicant must:

  • Have a first-class Honours degree (or equivalent Masters by Research) in physics, applied mathematics, chemistry, engineering or a related discipline
  • Be an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident, or a self-funded international student
  • Be capable of and interested in using theoretical and computational methods to solve soft condensed matter problems
  • Preferably possess a strong background knowledge in thermal and statistical physics.

Applicants should contact Professor Peter Daivis via to discuss eligibility.

Applications are open now.

Applications will be assessed after 26 April. If a suitable candidate is not found, applications will remain open and continuously assessed until a candidate is identified.

Professor Peter Daivis via

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Acknowledgement of country

RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nation on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business - Artwork 'Luwaytini' by Mark Cleaver, Palawa.