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Discovery and design of novel catalysts from computational chemistry

The discovery and design of novel materials as efficient catalysts are critical for the development of innovative clean energy and environmental technology. For example, hydrogen production involves hydrogen evolution and oxygen evolution reactions - oxygen reduction/evolution reactions are important in fuel cell and air battery technology, carbon dioxide reduction is related to the mitigation of carbon emission, and nitrogen fixation is linked to the fertiliser production process.In principle, the catalytic properties of a material are completely determined by its electronic …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Science and Engineering Faculty
School
School of Chemistry and Physics
Research centre(s)
Centre for Materials Science
Centre for Clean Energy Technologies and Practices

Monte Carlo modelling in radiotherapy

Various research projects are available in the use of monte-carlo techniques in radiotherapy and medical imaging. These include:modelling radiotherapy linear acceleratorspatient dosimetric verification andin-vivo treatment verificationradiobiology and micro-dosimetry.Some of the widely available monte-carlo codes are used in our research group including TOPAS, EGSnrc, and PRIMO.

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Science and Engineering Faculty
School
School of Chemistry and Physics
Research centre(s)

The use of PET-MRI in radiotherapy treatment planning

PET/CT is frequently used to assist in the planning of radiotherapy treatments. The PET information can help with determining the extent and function of the tumour as well as possible involvement of lymph nodes. This could result in improved targeting of the radiation to the disease.PET/MRI offers a number of advantages over PET/CT for head and neck cancer radiotherapy treatment planning. The MRI offers superior soft tissue contrast and no ionising radiation dose compared to the current standard of care, …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Science and Engineering Faculty
School
School of Chemistry and Physics
Research centre(s)

Use of depth sensing technology in radiotherapy and medical imaging

Consumer-grade depth sensing technology has in recent years become widely available. A number of vendors have developed similar technologies.Some examples of these technologies include:Intel’s RealSense™Asus Xtion depth sensorQualcomm Spectra ISP platform, now in its second generation.The systems make use of camera technology that measures the distance to a surface. Rapid image acquisition can then enable real time motion detection of location of the surface. The infra-red transmitter and sensor use a time-of-flight method to construct a depth map, in millimetres, …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Science and Engineering Faculty
School
School of Electrical Engineering and Robotics
Research centre(s)

Development of 3D tumour models for radiobiology applications

There is increasing interest in developing 3D tumour models for use in cancer research. The models have been used to investigate and test novel therapies in a model that is closer to the in-vivo tumour micro-environment. So far there has been little investigation of their use for therapeutic interventions that include ionising radiation. This research will investigate how they may be used for studying the fundamental radiobiology of radiotherapy treatments for cancer.

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Science and Engineering Faculty
School
School of Mechanical, Medical and Process Engineering
Research centre(s)

Characterising distant galaxies by way of spectral energy distribution analysis

The analysis of galaxies found throughout cosmic time provides us with the means to probe the underlying characteristics of the known universe.Over the last few decades, new observations of galaxies with various ground and space-based telescopes have provided us with an abundance of multi-wavelength data.By coupling these observations with theory, spectral energy distribution analysis allows us to derive the intrinsic properties of distant galaxies, which provides constraints for various galaxy formation and evolution scenarios.During this project, you will have access …

Study level
Master of Philosophy, Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Science and Engineering Faculty
School
School of Chemistry and Physics
Research centre(s)

Maxwell's Demon revisited: Molecular simulations as a statistical physics learning tool

In his 1871 'Theory of Heat', James Clerk Maxwell introduced a fictitious being who can violate the second law of thermodynamics by following the trajectory of every molecule within a gas.The being, later dubbed 'Maxwell's Demon' by Lord Kelvin, would operate a small trapdoor in a partitioned container to allow hotter and colder molecules of the gas to pass to opposite sides of the container. The Demon would be able to raise the temperature of the gas in one half …

Study level
Master of Philosophy, Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Science and Engineering Faculty
School
School of Chemistry and Physics
Research centre(s)

The cosmic star formation history measured from Evolutionary Map of the Universe (EMU) data

The cosmic star formation history (SFH) describes how the rate of star formation in the universe has evolved. This has been measured with increasing precision in recent decades. Using highly sensitive radio detections, this cosmic star formation history can be determined to the highest level of precision yet.The Evolutionary Map of the Universe (EMU) radio survey will measure up to 30 million radio sources in the coming few years. We estimate half of these will arise from star formations.Using the …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy
Faculty
Science and Engineering Faculty
School
School of Chemistry and Physics
Research centre(s)

The evolution of dust obscuration in galaxies

Dust in galaxies is ubiquitous. It arises from the end stages of stellar evolution, with heavy elements formed over a star's lifetime being distributed throughout a parent galaxy as the star goes supernova.There are numerous approaches to measuring dust obscuration in galaxies. These approaches show a broad trend toward heavier obscuration in galaxies that support higher levels of star formation. However, there is relatively little understanding for why this relationship exists.By analysing the properties of galaxies in the Galaxy And …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy
Faculty
Science and Engineering Faculty
School
School of Chemistry and Physics
Research centre(s)

Development of diffusion analysis methods for characterisation of tissues and porous materials

Molecular diffusion can be used as a probe of the microstructure and organisation of materials and biological tissues.Biomedical applications of diffusion include diffusion-tensor imaging, which has been used as the basis for nerve fibre tractography in the brain, as well as microstructural imaging of tissues and materials. Diffusion measurements of tissues and biomaterials can reveal the organisation and anisotropy of their structural scaffold (e.g., collagen fibres or muscle cells).In the oil and gas industry, the diffusion propagator in porous media …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Science and Engineering Faculty
School
School of Chemistry and Physics
Research centre(s)
Centre for Materials Science

Molecular simulation of rotational diffusion in ideal liquids

Rotational tumbling of molecules in a liquid is an important phenomenon in Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) because it determines the spin-relaxation rates of the resident nuclei which can determine MRI contrast.For a relatively simple molecular process, the theoretical description of rotational motion of molecules in liquids remains controversial. The most commonly used model, the Debye model, assumes that:the rotational diffusion propagator of a tumbling molecule is a solution of the diffusion equation on a spherical surfacethis solution is described by …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Science and Engineering Faculty
School
School of Chemistry and Physics
Research centre(s)
Centre for Materials Science

Topological control over cell behaviour for robust additive tissue biomanufacturing

Hospital departments are adopting medical imaging, modelling, and 3D printing to automate personalised implant manufacture and avoid malpractice related to surgical handcrafting. Although several 3D printed implants are approved for medical use, their therapeutic value remains limited as acellular devices with coarse resolution. The ability to print scaffold implants with cell microenvironment precision has been achieved using melt electrowriting (MEW), an emerging technique frequently applied to produce cell culture scaffolds.In contemporary MEW studies, the effect of materials or pore sizes …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Science and Engineering Faculty
School
School of Mechanical, Medical and Process Engineering
Research centre(s)

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