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PhD students


Mr Sam Ahmadzadeh

BSc in Physics from University of the West of Scotland (UWS). Project entitled “Plant study on the International Space Station using hyperspectral and gas sensing technology for growth of healthy plant” is funded by the International Space School Educational Trust (ISSET).  The project’s primary objective is development of smart integrated multi-sensing (gas environment, temperature, humidity), hyperspectral imaging and intelligent lighting control tools relevant to precision plant cultivation in the space environment where the goal will be to optimise the yield, quality and resource use efficiency of agricultural products in a micro-gravity space environment. This research is part of a unique, high profile collaboration between UWS and scientists at King’s College London, NASA and ISSET. Link to LinkedIn Profile.


Mr Daxing Han

BSc in Mechanical Design & Manufacturing & Its Automation from Changchun Institute Of Technology integrated with one year study at UWS, and MSc in Advanced Thin Film Technologies from University of the West of Scotland. His PhD project is the investigations on process and characterization of PbSe-based thin films for NDIR gas sensor application, the research of the project includes PbSe-based thin film fabrications using chemical process and rf sputtering process plus post treatments, and the analysis of properties for IV-VI semiconductor mid-IR detectors and photoluminescence devices. LinkedIn


Mr Zhentao Wu

MSc from the University of the West of Scotland. The project title is “Trace chemical detections using a novel Surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) substrate produced by oblique angle vapour deposition on pre-patterned nanostructured template” this project will produce reproducible SERS substrates using cost-effective means and applying these for trace-level chemical detection.


Mr Sijia Cai

BSc in Engineering from College of Optical and Electronical Information of Changchun University of Science& Technology (CUST) and MSc in Advanced Thin Film Technologies from University of the West of Scotland. His PhD project entitled “A Novel Miniaturised Spectrometer based-on UWS patented Linear Variable Bandpass Filter”, supervisor is Dr. Song. The research of the project includes linear variable bandpass filter fabrication, optical design, circuit design, and programming for system control and data collection/analysis.


Mr Jian Song

Msc in Advanced Thin Film Technology from University of the West of Scotland. The project is Modelling and simulation of nanostructured thin film Surface Enhanced Raman Scattering (SERS) substrate, based on ZnO nanowire deposited using evaporation process.

Mr Manuel Pelayo García

BSc in Nanoscience and Nanotechnology from the Autonomous University of Barcelona (Spain) in 2019, and MSc in Nanoscience and Nanotechnology from the University of Glasgow (Scotland) in 2020. The project title is “Glancing Angle Deposition of ZnO Nanostructured Thin Films for Enhanced Ultrasonic Sensing and Imaging Applications” funded by CENSIS and Novosound; and supervised by Dr. Carlos Garcia Nuñez and Dr. Kevin McAughey. This project will develop a high-end ultrasound ZnO multi-sensor and manufacture a prototype sensor for eventual commercialisation. Providing low-cost/lo-power consumption solutions in the broad ultrasonic device market and boosting the competitive Scottish company Novosound to upper industrial sectors.


Miss Lucía Nieto Sierra

BSc in Chemistry from the University of Cádiz (Spain), currently I am a PhD student in Nanoscience and Material Technologies at the same university and I am carrying out my mobility action at ITFSI, supervised by Dr. Carlos García Núñez. My project title is ‘Aircraft wing energy harvesting through diamond based piezo systems (Diamond Wings)’, which belongs to the research group Diamond TEP-120 of the University of Cádiz. The project’s primary objective is to develop a structure based on aluminum nitride and diamond for energy harvesting for aerospace applications. The final approach consists on the deposition around carbon fibre of a diamond/AlN/diamond structure, which behaves as a piezoelectric system allowing the harvesting of the energy generated in the piezo crystal while conserving mechanical properties of the carbon fibre.


Miss Emma Keel

BSc (Hons) in Physics from the University of the West of Scotland (UWS). Her project is titled “Investigation and optimisation of a design-for-manufacture deposition method for a single layer graphene”, supervised by Professor Des Gibson and Dr Carlos Garcia Nuñez. The aim of the project is to build on the RDG patented process, completing a research & development deposition system, optimisation and characterisation of the resulting graphene material. The project will include assembly and complete fabrication of the graphene reactor system, undertaken jointly by Integrated Graphene Ltd (IGL) and UWS ITFSI. Link to LinkedIn page: LinkedIn Profile 


Mr Greg Mcgann 

BEng in Electronic and Electrical Engineering from the University of Strathclyde. Project entitled "Investigation of doped IV-VI polycrystalline thin films deposited by sputtering methods for high speed and room-temperature mid-infrared photodetectors", supervised by Dr. Carlos Garcia Nuñez and Prof. Des Gibson.

The project will investigate the use of IV-VI material (PbSe) (alongside novel methods of deposition/sensitisation) as the active material within photodetector devices. Using the distinctive attribute of gases to absorb at known wavelengths of light, detectors can be optimised around this feature to provide measurements of relative concentration of target gas. Applications of this technology are wide ranging and of high importance. Examples include detection of gases which are of importance to air quality, greenhouse gases, industrial safety, health monitoring, and breath analysis.

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Mr Michael McKinlay

BSc in Physics from the University of the West of Scotland. Project is titled “Investigation of new advanced materials and structures for development of self-charging hybrid energy systems” supervised by Dr. Carlos Garcia Nuñez and funded by the UWS Vice-Chancellor’s studentship. This project seeks to utilise the ITFSI’s plasma source technology for assisted electron beam deposition and microwave plasma-assisted deposition of dielectric thin film materials. The resulting thin film will then be used in the development of triboelectric and piezoelectric nanogenerators to produce a high-performance, environmentally-friendly energy generator.  


Mr Connor Lindsay

BSc in Physics from the University of the West of Scotland. The project entitled “Fundamental research on plasma assisted deposition of dielectric optical coatings essential for future generation gravitational wave detectors” supervised by Professor Des Gibson and Dr Carlos Garcia Nunez. This project is focused on researching new plasma-assisted deposition of optical coatings technology, based on the plasma-assisted processes developed by UWS ITFSI, to optimise the optical coating deposition methods and increase the gravitational wave detection efficiencies.

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