For over thirty years, SCI has supported and recognised the excellence of early career scientists, by aiding their studies in the form of an SCI Scholarship.
Since 1985 around 80 scholarships have been awarded which have not only given the recipients financial assistance, but have enabled them to broaden their network, and strengthen their skills and knowledge. SCI Scholars receive access to publishing and mentoring opportunities and are given a platform to present their work amongst esteemed scientists and industrialists, raising their profile within the scientific community.
Angus was awarded an SCI Scholarship in 2022. At the end of their first year, SCI Scholars present an end of year report to SCI. Read on to find out more about what he has done in his first year as an SCI Scholar.
'My PhD focusses on the design, characterisation, and testing of novel electrocatalysts, composing of single Fe metal atoms within nitrogen-doped carbon, applied to oxygen reduction in low temperature fuel cells, and other electrochemical reactions. I am primarily based at Imperial College London at the Centre for Doctoral Training in the Advanced Characterisation of Materials, under the supervision of Prof. Magda Titirici and Dr. Ifan Stephens.
The SCI scholarship enabled me to conduct a month-long research stay at the University of Grenoble in September 2022, where I focussed on monitoring operando Fe dissolution to understand my material degradation pathway. I was also able to obtain crucial cryo Mossbauer measurements with equipment not available in the UK. Directly from Grenoble I travelled to Barcelona for the 2022 NanoGe Fall conference on Materials for Sustainable Development, where I presented my first international talk on the exciting and new results I obtained in Grenoble. Following the conference, I was proud to co-first author an article published in the journal of Advanced Materials (https://doi.org/10.1002/adma.202211022), which included some results from newfound collaborators in Grenoble, among others.
Most recently I have returned from another month-long research stay, this time at Bar-Ilan University, in Israel. During my time I focussed on learning and applying a new in-situ electrochemical characterisation method recently developed there which can probe the number of active sites and monitor how they change over time. I am hoping these results will lead to further published works.
The scholarship from the SCI has provided me with unique networking opportunities within the SCI through College of Scholar days and at the annual general meeting. Meanwhile, the generous funding has allowed me to progress collaborations abroad and recently to purchase a new personal work laptop, which was essential while my university laptop was under repair! For these reasons I am very grateful, and I have enjoyed giving back by getting involved with the SCI Material Chemistry Early Career committee. With the committee, I am currently helping to organise the upcoming annual conference, with 2023 based on Catalysis for a Sustainable Future, where I also look forward to giving a talk.'
Angus Pedersen, Imperial College London