MPhil/ PhD Green Thermoplastic Elastomeric Nanocomposites for Transportation Vehicles

Supervisor: Dr Chaoying Wan

PhD Project Overview

Thermoplastic elastomers (TPEs) have found wide applications in transportation vehicles. High performance TPEs can be produced by the melt-compounding of engineering thermoplastics with elastomers. In order to improve the interfacial compatibilisation between different polymers, interchange reactions such as transesterification or transamidation have often been conducted in the process of extrusion. The interchange reactions take place at elevated temperatures, often in the presence of appropriate catalysts.

Considering global environmental problems caused by plastic waste, this project aims to develop high performance biopolymer based TPEs through a reactive compounding process.


  • Fabrication of biodegradable PBS or PLLA based TPEs through reactive-compounding techniques
  • Synthesis of novel nanoparticle based catalysts and investigation of the reaction kinetics and catalysis mechanism
  • Understanding the reaction mechanism and relationship between the structure and mechanical properties of the TPE’s nanocomposites.
  • Development of high performance TPEs for transportation vehicles.

This project involves knowledge of polymer chemistry, physics and polymer processing technology. It will enable the PhD candidate to put polymer theories into practice and get a deep understanding of polymer science and engineering.


Applicants should have a First Class UK Honors degree or equivalent, in a relevant discipline such as Chemistry, Polymer Technology, Nanotechnology or Materials Science.

An MSc in a relevant subject is highly desirable.

Knowledge or experience of chemistry synthesis is advantageous.

Please note that the scholarship is only available to UK and EU applicants.

Awards available: 1 award available

Funding Details: Fees and Maintenance at RCUK level

Length of Award: 3 years (PhD)

Eligibility: Available to Home (UK & EU) students

Application Details:

Please contact prior to submitting a formal application.

Apply directly through the PG Admissions system (note reference number)

Deadline: 31st January 2013

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