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PhD student (M/W) Use of advanced oxidation processes for the degradation of nanoplastics in water

This offer is available in the following languages:
- Français-- Anglais

Date Limite Candidature : lundi 12 juin 2023

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Informations générales

Intitulé de l'offre : PhD student (M/W) Use of advanced oxidation processes for the degradation of nanoplastics in water (H/F)
Référence : UMR7515-DIDROB-001
Nombre de Postes : 1
Lieu de travail : STRASBOURG
Date de publication : mardi 16 mai 2023
Type de contrat : CDD Doctorant/Contrat doctoral
Durée du contrat : 36 mois
Date de début de la thèse : 1 octobre 2023
Quotité de travail : Temps complet
Rémunération : 2 135,00 € gross monthly
Section(s) CN : Coordination chemistry, catalysis, interfaces, and processes

Description du sujet de thèse

Nanoplastics (NPs) are emerging environmental pollutants found everywhere, from drinking water to food products, from rivers to oceans and even in the air. They are classified as having sizes less than 1 μm. Their release and accumulation in the environment has become a major concern. Wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs), which collect water discharged from industrial, commercial and domestic activities, are not designed appropriately for the removal of these NPs. Consequently, the rate of elimination of NPs in WWTPs by the usual chemical, biological or physical means is currently not high enough to prevent their entry into natural aqueous ecosystems. Although this is a very recent area of research, the development of new cost-effective and sustainable remediation strategies aimed at reducing or eliminating NPs in water is therefore of paramount importance.

The objectives of the project are to use homogeneous and heterogeneous advanced oxidation processes (POAs) (photocatalysis, Fenton, UV-H2O2, etc.) to eliminate nanoplastics present in surface waters. On the other hand, given the complex nature of plastic nanoparticles, one of the challenges of the project will be to understand and monitor the degradation mechanisms of certain NPs, and in particular polystyrene (PS) and polyethylene (PE).

The specific objectives of the project will be:
- Establish a methodology to monitor the degradation of NPs and the quantification of the by-products formed during the degradation process. This will require addressing the analytical challenges for a reliable and representative chemical analysis of NPs and their degradation by-products (organic molecules, ions, short polymer chains, etc.).
- Assess the feasibility of the degradation (mineralization) of model nanoplastics (PS, PE, PMMA…) by homogeneous and heterogeneous advanced oxidation processes (POA).
- Apply the most efficient PAOs to additive NPs and/or additive NPs in complex aqueous systems (real effluents)

Contexte de travail

The PhD student (M/F) will be recruited by the National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) and assigned to the Photocatalysis and Photoconversion team at ICPEES (Institute of Chemistry and Processes for Energy, Environment and Health). - UMR CNRS 7515, https://icpees.unistra.fr/en/welcome-to-icpees/), located on the premises of the ECPM (European School of Chemistry, Polymers and Materials) within the University of Strasbourg ("University of excellence" in chemistry) and in its Saint-Avold branch at the IUT de Moselle_Est (chemistry department).
The thesis project will be carried out in collaboration with the Institute of Chemistry of Clermont-Ferrand
(ICCF), the Institute of Analytical Sciences and Physico-Chemistry for the Environment and Materials (IPREM, Pau) and the Water, Environment and Urban Systems Laboratory (Leesu, Paris).
The PhD student (M/F) will be supervised by Drs Didier Robert and Nicolas Keller (ICPEES) and will be enrolled at the University of Strasbourg within the doctoral school of chemical sciences (ED 222). The consortium brings together four complementary teams, located in France, with internationally recognized expertise in their fields, and who have built a long-term collaboration. The ICPEES will bring its expertise and know-how to the doctoral project and will provide the doctoral student (M/F) with the equipment necessary for carrying out the thesis.
Moreover, Strasbourg is the largest city in the Grand Est region and one of the four main capitals of the European Union. It is a tourist hotspot in the Upper Rhine Valley, recognized not only for science but also for its quality of life.

The PhD student (M/F) will benefit from 36-month funding from the National Research Agency (ANR) as part of the AOPNANOP project (Advanced oxidation processes: powerful tools for the mineralization of nanoplastics in the water - ANR-22-CE04-0011).

The position is located in a sector covered by the protection of scientific and technical potential (PPST), and therefore requires, in accordance with the regulations, that your arrival be authorized by the competent authority of the MESR.

Le poste se situe dans un secteur relevant de la protection du potentiel scientifique et technique (PPST), et nécessite donc, conformément à la réglementation, que votre arrivée soit autorisée par l'autorité compétente du MESR.

Contraintes et risques

The PhD student (M/F) will be made aware of the risks inherent in their work environment. In particular, he will be trained in the risks associated with the handling of nanomaterials.

Informations complémentaires

Candidate profile (M/F):

This multidisciplinary work at the border between chemistry, materials science, nanosciences and process engineering will involve many aspects:
- the synthesis, physico-chemical characterization and testing of heterogeneous photocatalytic materials photoactive under light irradiation,
- Characterization and analysis of nanopolymers, in particular suspended in water
- The use of analytical techniques for the analysis of organic compounds in water.

Knowledge and initial experience in the field of advanced oxidation processes will be an added advantage.

The thesis is aimed at a candidate (M/F) holding a master's degree in chemistry, physico-chemistry, materials science or nanoscience, with knowledge of polymer chemistry.

The candidate (M/F) will work in a dynamic, collaborative and international environment. Excellent communication skills (written and oral) in English are expected (equivalent to a B2 level according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages), while knowledge of French will be a plus.

Interested candidates (M/F) must provide, via the https://emploi.cnrs.fr platform, a CV, a cover letter, a copy of their Master's transcripts (M1 and M2) as well as only two letters of recommendation or two reference contacts.