Modeling and Simulation of Nanoparticles using Emulsions as a Template
Nanoparticles and their clusters show new and interesting properties different from bulk materials due to their extremely small size (diameter of about 10 nm) and resultant large specific surface area. To maintain such small size of the final solid particles during synthesis, it is critical to limit particle growth.
To this end, water-in-oil emulsions have been used to confine nanoparticle size, by confining the reaction within the micrometer-sized emulsion drop.
It then becomes critical to understand the variables that control nanoparticle formation, leading to a desired property. Control of nanoparticle size, size distribution and particle-cluster formation is the first step in all these applications.
To achieve this, we will build on our existing mathematical models and computer simulation programmes, involving emulsion-emulsion reaction, leading to spherical nanoparticles.
There would be scope to use the model and simulation predictions with our own existing experimental data for improving sensing, water treatment and such important applications of nanotechnology.
The student will have the opportunity to learn and solve mathematical models and learn Monte Carlo simulation and population balance equations. The work will be mostly theoretical and involve computer programming, with some scope for experiments, if there is interest of the student. Otherwise, the student can use data from experimentalists in our research group to make model predictions.
Knowledge in basic transport phenomena, numerical methods, differential equations and interest in computer programming would be beneficial.