PhD Scholarship in Nanomaterials for Energy Devices

Undertake world-leading research in chemistry/nanotechnology on a project funded by the Australian Research Council.

The project

The interaction between materials and light is at the core of many technological applications such as solar cells, clean fuel generation (water splitting), photocatalysis, and optical gas sensors. In order for a material to successfully absorb and utilise the energy provided by light, its physical, chemical and electronic properties have to be carefully designed and optimised. The aim of this project is to fabricate highly porous, light-absorbing coatings for a variety of applications such as catalysis, energy generation and sensing. The candidate will explore wet chemical nanofabrication methods including spray pyrolysis, chemical bath deposition and SILAR (Successive Ionic Layer Adsorption and Reaction). These will be used for the deposition of functional nanomaterials including zinc oxide, bismuth sulfide, and ternary compounds such as vanadates and oxynitride. All these are of great technological and industrial interest for use in optoelectronics, catalysis and energy generation, thanks to their selective light absorption properties.

The benefits

This highly multidisciplinary project is embedded within a broader research initiative partially funded by the Australian Research Council (ARC), and involves collaborations with both local (CSIRO, ANU) and international institutions (University of Padova, Italy). As part of the research project, the student will work in a highly multidisciplinary environment, with state of the art facilities and within a group of young and motivated researchers that will provide mentoring and guidance. The student will develop a skill set that will be highly regarded for future career opportunities (for example in manufacturing and chemical industries, academia, consulting and IP firms).

Opportunities to develop local, national and international collaborations with other universities and research organisations, and to participate to conferences and workshops will also be available.

Valued at up to AUD $31,000 per annum for 3 years full-time, with possibility for 6 month extension.

To be eligible for this scholarship you must:

  • Have a first-class Honours or Masters degree in chemistry, physics, nanotechology, material science, chemical engineering or related field
  • Provide evidence of good oral and written communication skills
  • Demonstrate an ability to work as part of a multi-disciplinary research team
  • Meet RMIT University’s entry requirements for the Higher Degree by Research programs, including the minimum English language requirement (international applicants only).

To apply, please submit the following documents to Dr. Enrico Della Gaspera via

  • Curriculum vitae
  • Academic transcripts.

Prospective candidates will be required to submit an application for admission to the PhD (Applied Chemistry) (DR229) as per instructions available on the School of Science website.

Applications are open now.

Applications will close when a candidate is selected.

This scholarship will be governed by RMIT University's Research Scholarship Terms and Conditions.

For further information, please contact Dr. Enrico Della Gaspera 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.