Self-funded PhD opportunities

Development of flexible stress-free thin films using KJL magnetron plasma sputtering

  • Application end date: Applications welcome all year round
  • Funding Availability: Self-funded PhD students only
  • Department: School of Earth and Environmental Sciences
  • PhD Supervisor: Dr Melvin Vopson, Dr Hooshyar Assadullahi and Dr John C. Naylor (Kurt J. Lesker)

Project code: SEES3610615 

Applications are invited for a studentship to research development and testing of novel flexible thin film materials, leading to the award of a PhD degree. The three years post is available from June 2017 (or Oct . 2017) and it is supported by a bursary and fees (at the UK/EU student rate) provided by Kurt J. Lesker and the University of Portsmouth. 

The research will investigate fabrication of multifunctional nano-thin films on flexible substrates. The work will be principally experimental, involving operation of LabLine KJL plasma sputtering machine, materials testing and microscopy. The structure / physical property relationships of the flexible nano-thin films will be identified, leading to improved and novel materials. There will be the opportunity to undertake some design of test equipment. 

You will be an enthusiastic and self-motivated person who meets the academic requirements for enrolment for the PhD degree at University of Portsmouth. You will have a suitable honours degree (or equivalent) in Physics, Materials Science or a related subject, and a rigorous approach to research together with disciplined work habits. Training will be given in plasma sputtering and materials characterisation techniques including AFM, VSM, MOKE, Piezo-dielectric, SEM, XRD and XRF. Good team-working, observational and communication skills are essential. A suitable MSc/MPhil/MEng degree is desirable. 

Post is based in the Applied Physics Laboratory within the School of Earth and Environmental Sciences. To find out more about the School, go to: 

To find out more about the LabLine sputtering technology, go to: 

Funding Notes:


How to apply:

To apply or make an enquiry, please visit postgraduate research: Earth and Environmental Sciences

All applications should use our standard application forms and follow the instructions given under the ‘Research Degrees’ heading on the following webpages:

Using the online application form: 

(i) Select Subject area as: Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences (from the drop down menu in box 1); 

(ii) Select Mode of study as FULL TIME (in drop down in box 2), and then; 

(iii) Select a course as PHD (EARTH & ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES) in drop down in box 3

For further details of the research project contact Dr Melvin Vopson:  

When applying please note the project code - SEES3610615