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PhD Opportunity: Electrified Chemistry for a Zero-Carbon Future

Inert molecules, such as CO₂ and N₂, have high bond energies (5.5eV for C=O and 9.8eV for N≡N). Therefore, industrial processes such as Sabatier reaction for CO2 reduction (400°C, 30atm, Ni catalyst) and Haber-Bosch process for N₂ fixation (450°C, 200atm, Fe catalyst) both require energy-intensive reaction conditions and expensive infrastructure. Synthetic nitrogen fertilizer produced by the Haber-Bosch process provides food security for half of the global population (4 billion people) today. However, this industrial process accounts for 1.4% of global CO₂ emissions, 1-2% of the world’s total energy consumption, and nearly 40% of world’s hydrogen fuels every year. Using a combination of radical chemistry, plasma (air gap)-electrochemistry, magneto-electrochemistry, catalysis, and reactive interfaces, our group designs green and scalable methods to electrify the chemical industry.

electrified chemical production for a zero carbon future

About this opportunity:

Interested in completing a PhD research degree in 3.5 years? We are looking for curious, energetic, and self-motivated candidates, whom are passionate about solving interdisciplinary problems.


- a major in Chemistry or Chemical Engineering (or related fields)

- a 4-year undergraduate degree (awarded First Class Honours), or a Master’s Degree

- prior research experience (with at least 1 publication)

- excellent communication skills in English (e.g., IELTS >6.5 across all sections; or TOFEL >88 overall, with >22 across all section)

- an overall GPA of above 3.3/4.0 (or top 15% in your class)

- coming from one of the top 200 universities worldwide (or highly ranked in your country)

The University of Sydney is ranked in the top 20 universities in the world.

Research scholarships are awarded on a competitive basis, with exempted Tuition and $40k/yr stipend (tax free). Conference presentations and overseas collaborative opportunities (e.g., with Harvard University) are possible, depending on project and research performance.

How to apply:

Please email Dr. Haihui Joy Jiang ( with the following info:

- CV (including peer-reviewed publications, if applicable)

- Academic transcripts

- a short email introduction

Note that international (non-Australian) candidates should submit their applications a year in advance. Australian (domestic) candidates are encouraged to apply a semester in advance.


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