PhD Studentship in Renewable Energy



Funding for: UK students, EU students

Funding amount: not specified

Hours: Full time

Closes: 31st March 2021

PhD Studentship – Advanced photo- and thermo-electrochemical flow cell for energy conversion and storage

Job description

Institute of Mechanical, Process and Energy Engineering (IMPEE) at Heriot-Watt University offer a PhD student position for a talented, and strongly motivated candidate who will contribute building a new setup with potential for an ambitious project entitled “Advanced photo- and thermo-electrochemical flow cell for energy conversion and storage”. We are looking for candidates with a background in, or strong interest in at least one of the following areas (both theoretician and experimentalist are welcome):

  • Charging/Discharging performance modelling (e.g., Python, MATLAB, COMSOL, etc.)
  • Electrochemical flow cell design and fabrication
  • Photo- and electrochemical experiments and analysis
  • Photovoltaics or PV-assisted energy conversion

About the Project

The development of reliable renewable energy storage system is a key aspect for a sustainable carbon-neutral society. Solar rechargeable redox flow battery (SRFB) technology is being in the spotlight as a mean of simultaneously storing the solar energy into chemicals, which can be readily utilized to generate electricity via reversible reactions [1-4]. However, the plain fact is that there is that most studies overlook practical challenges arising from the inherent instability and degradation of the system under light and heat. The proposed project aims for minimizing the thermal loss under drastic temperature change by introducing thermo-electrochemical approach (theoretical and experimental).


We note that this project is available to UK/pre-settled EU* applicants only. The annual stipend (ca. £15k/year for three years) and tuition fees will be fully covered. Applicants should have good written and oral communication skills (IELTS 6.5 with no category less than 6, if your first language is not English) and a good degree (or expect to obtain by the start date) in physics or related engineering disciplines (Mechanical, Material, Chemical engineering etc.).

*EU applicants should meet residency requirements (i.e.pre-settled status in the UK) set out by EPSRC (

How to apply

To apply, please send your CV, academic transcripts**, and a cover letter explaining your motivation/interest in this project by 31 March 2021 (Academic starting date – September 1) to Dr Dowon Bae ( If the number of applicants is less than the required number, selection committees decided to prolong the open-recruitment period. Note that one reference letter will be asked if your application passes the first-round review.

Students currently enrolled in a Master qualification must submit a separate letter from their current University (or Institute) that predicts the standing of their expected qualification.


[1] J. Phys. Chem. C 2018, 122, 25729.

[2] Sustain. Energy Fuels 2020, 4, 2650.

[3] Nat. Mater. 2020, 19, 1326.

[4] Commun. Mater. 2020, 1, 17.