Discovery of new optoelectronic materials for coatings on glass towards net zero technologies


An opportunity for a 3.5 year PhD position supported by NSG Group towards the discovery of new materials as coatings on glass.

This project aims to develop new materials for optoelectronic applications on glass to contribute to the net zero agenda. New materials are required to maintain the pace of efficiency and performance improvements in thin film PV devices, energy saving glazing, electronic displays, lighting and other emerging markets. Previous work in collaboration with NSG has used computational chemistry and deep (machine) learning to predict new material compositions with high optical transparency and high electrical conductivity.

Using the outputs of the computational prediction studies mentioned above the student will attempt the bulk synthesis, structural characterisation and property measurements of the materials. Bulk synthesis of the materials will be followed by pulsed laser deposition (PLD) and/or magnetron sputtering to prepare high quality films on single crystal and glass substrates for characterisation and property measurements. Further developments could employ other thin film deposition methods suitable for large-scale production on glass substrates e.g. chemical vapour deposition, spray pyrolysis etc. in collaboration with NSG Group and will require use of the laboratories at the NSG Group Technical Centre at Lathom, Lancashire. There are extensive opportunities to use synchrotron X-ray and neutron scattering facilities for detailed composition-structure-property relationship studies.

As well as obtaining knowledge and experience in materials synthesis, characterisation and crystallographic techniques, the student will develop skills in teamwork and scientific communication as computational and experimental researchers within the team work closely together.

Applications are welcomed from candidates with a strong undergraduate interest and/or background in solid state chemistry, condensed matter physics, materials science or related fields. Please ensure you include the project title and reference number: CCPR083 in your online application form. 

To apply for this opportunity, please visit: and click the 'Ready to applyApply online’ button.

The inorganic materials chemistry group, led by Prof Rosseinsky at the University of Liverpool (, focusses its research on the discovery of new solid inorganic compounds. Recently, the use of computational materials chemistry has accelerated this materials discovery process, leading to the synthesis of a range of novel metal oxides with a variety of functional properties1–8. These successes have shown that the process of computer aided materials discovery relies on a close working relationship between computational and experimental researchers within the group, which is recognized in the EPSRC Programme Grant in Digital Navigation of Chemical Space for Function, and the decision to bring together theoretical and experimental researchers within the Materials Innovation Factory and the Leverhulme Centre for Functional Materials Design at the University of Liverpool. The successful candidate will participate in this relationship, using their experimental skills in close collaboration with the computational excellence present within the research group, to accelerate the discovery of new materials. The research will be performed in the state-of-the-art laboratories of the Materials Innovation Factory.


Open to students worldwide

Funding information

Funded studentship

The award is 50% funded by NSG Group and 50% funded by the University of Liverpool through an EPSRC Doctoral Training Partnership award and will pay full tuition fees and a maintenance grant for 3.5 years. Applications from candidates meeting the eligibility requirements of the EPSRC are welcome – please refer to the EPSRC website ( It provides full tuition fees and a stipend of approx. £17,668 (this is the rate from 01/10/2022) full time tax free per year for living costs. The stipend costs quoted are for students starting from 1st October 2022 and will rise slightly each year with inflation.

The funding for this studentship also comes with a budget for research and training expenses of £1000 per year, and for those that are eligible, a disabled students allowance to cover the costs of any additional support that is required.

Due to a change in UKRI policy, this is now available for Home, EU or international students to apply. However, please be aware there is a limit on the number of international students we can appoint to these studentships per year.

You will be encouraged to undertake some teaching duties for the department for which you will receive training and payment. You will have the option to work towards and apply for Associate Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy (via the Foundations in Learning & Teaching in Higher Education (FLTHE) programme or the University of Liverpool Teaching Recognition and Accreditation (ULTRA) Framework



  1. Newnham, T. Zhao, QD. Gibson, TD. Manning, Troy M. Zanella,E. Mariani, LM. Daniels, J. Alaria, JB. Claridge, F. Corà, Furio MJ Rosseinsky (2022) Band Structure Engineering of Bi4O4SeCl2 for Thermoelectric Applications.ACS Organic & Inorganic Au, 2 (5). pp. 405-414.
  2. Vasylenko, D. Antypov, V. Gusev, MW. Gaultois, MS. Dyer, MJ. Rosseinsky, Element selection for functional materials discovery by integrated machine learning of elemental contributions to properties, arXiv:2202.01051
  3. Han, A.Vasylenko, AR. Neale, BB. Duff, R. Chen, MS. Dyer, Y. Dang, LM. Daniels, M. Zanella, CM. Robertson, LJ Kershaw-Cook, A-L, Hansen, M. Knapp, LJ. Hardwick, F. Blanc, JB. Claridge, and MJ. Rosseinsky, (2021) Extended Condensed Ultraphosphate Frameworks with Monovalent Ions Combine Lithium Mobility with High Computed Electrochemical Stability. JOURNAL OF THE AMERICAN CHEMICAL SOCIETY, 143 (43). pp. 18216-18232.
  4. Stoner, PAE. Murgatroyd, M. O'Sullivan, MS. Dyer, TD. Manning, JB. Claridge, MJ. Rosseinsky and J Alaria, (2019) Chemical Control of Correlated Metals as Transparent Conductors, Advanced Functional Materials, 1808609