Job type
Thesis
Job Service
Centre for Education, Research and Innovation in Energy and Environment
Job Location
Douai

Context

IMT Lille Douai currently develops industry-oriented research activities on the manufacturing of gas sensors (amonia, hydrogen sulfide, formaldehyde, etc…) for outdoor/indoor/industrial air quality monitoring and biomedical applications.

A specific collaboration with Groupe TERA is setup in the framework of a public/private reserch laboratory financed by the National Reaseach Agency (ANR) (IAM-Lab, Innovative Air Monitoring Laboratory). One of the main tasks of this four years project is to design new ammonia sensor technologies for air quality monitoring. For this purpose, a specific attention is paid to sensing performances of conductive polymers, in particular polyaniline (PANI) that displays strong variations of its intrinsic resistivity with the concentation of ammonia. Recent results indicate that PANI/Polyurethane (PU) blends could display low detection limits (close to 1 ppb ammonia), high sensitivity and selectivity that opens up interesting applicative perspectives.

The structuration of PANI/PU during sensor manfacturing into porous morphologies is important and connected to final sensing performances. Several challenges still need to be overcome to optimize formulations and manufacturing conditions using a rational approach based on a deep exploration and understanding of relationships between process/structure/performances of current PANI/PU materials. The replacement of toxic solvents used during sensor manufacturing is also a major issue to overcome and environmental-friendly solvents need to be investigated. In this context, the objective of this PhD position is to streghnen the actual knowledge on the manufacturing of ammonia sensors based on PANI/PU and develop a next-generation of ultra-sensitive ammonia sensors with reduced environmental footprint.

Mission

  1. Optimize sensing performances of actual PANI/PU materials made by a drop-casting technique and address relations between morphological characteristics and gas sensing mechanisms using advanced characterization tools
  2. Explore new manufacturing processes (e. g. inkjet printing) in order to obtain specific porous morphologies and new strategies to replace toxic solvent by environmental-friendly alternatives.
  3. Develop previous concepts up to prototypes levels and test ammonia sensors in representative environments.

Teaching opportunities at L2 to M2 levels will be also possible in the frame of the IMT Lille Douai courses

Conditions

A PhD position is offered at IMT Lille Douai in the framework of an industrial collaborative project between Research Centres Energy Environment and Materials & Processes from IMT Lille Douai and Groupe TERA, a major industrial player in the real time analysis and monitoring of air quality. We are looking for a highly motivated candidate with a Master degree in Material Science (or equivalent e. g. French Engineer Diploma) with specific knowledge on the processing and physicochemical characterizations of polymer materials. Knowledges on conductive polymers, sensors, porous materials or polymer blends will be appreciated. Candidate must be fluent in English with writing/communication skills. The annual salary is around 25 k€, according to a CIFRE convention with Groupe TERA.

Duration and starting date: 36 months of contract starting on October 1st, 2021.
Application deadline: 06/06/2021.

Contact

Candidates should send their CV and the name of 2 references to:

Dr. Caroline DUC – Tel. 03 27 71 22 94
Dr. Cédric SAMUEL – Tel. 03 27 71 24 43
Dr. Emilie Bialic – Tel. 06 26 16 19 82

Candidate to offer