Departmental PhD scholarships

The Department of Chemical Engineering has up to 15 fully-funded scholarships available for PhD applicants to start in 2024. Ten scholarships are open to all applicants regardless of their fee status while 5 are reserved for Home students. The scholarships cover both tuition fees and a tax-free contribution to maintenance costs of approximately between £20,622 - £22,900 per annum for 42 months.

Scholarships for October 2024 entry are available in the following areas and groups:

  • New algorithms for the computer-aided design of sustainable molecules and processes; Machine learning approaches for crystal structure prediction; Designing high-throughput experiments to optimise reaction kinetics; with Professor Claire Adjiman 
  • Mammalian cell engineering: resource aware designs and tools for gene expression control; with Dr Francesca Ceroni 
  • Building a biomimetic anti-cancer micromachine; Bioengineered sensors for disease detection and in-situ therapeutic responses; Design rules for remote controlled biology: activation of synthetic cells using stimuli-responsive nanoparticle organelles; or Real-time genetic reprogramming of micron-scale soft matter devices; with Dr Yuval Elani
  • Prediction of thermodynamic properties for electrolyte design in Li-ion batteries; with Professor Amparo Galindo
  • Sustainable production of bio-based chemicals using heterogeneous catalysis; or Catalytic upgrading of C1 compounds (CO2, CH4); with Dr Ceri Hammond
  • Applications of spatially and temporally resolved data, and AI/ML, in rapid creation of energy systems models; with Professor Adam Hawkes 
  • High-efficiency multi-generation solar energy conversion; with Professor Christos N. Markides
  • Autonomous supervisory control of chemical processes; Modelling, control, and optimization of net zero industrial cogeneration systems; or Scalable stochastic control and optimization solutions using machine learning; with Dr Mehmet Mercangöz 
  • Computer-aided tools for process design and optimisation; with Dr Maria Papathanasiou 
  • Porous materials for gas separation; Porous materials for CO2 photoreduction; or Automated high throughput methods for materials discovery and development; with Professor Camille Petit
  • Pioneering Chemistry for a Sustainable Circular Economy; with Dr Roberto Rinaldi
  • Design and applications of functional membrane materials in electrochemical energy conversion and storage devices, including batteries, fuel cells, and water electrolysers for hydrogen production; with Dr Qilei Song 
  • CO2 Electrochemical Reduction; or A carbon fibre based Li-S ion battery; with Professor Magda Titirici
  • Optimising carbonation for carbon dioxide sequestration; with Professor Daryl Williams

Upcoming deadlines: 

  • 31 October 2023 for the first selection round
  • 31 December 2023 for the second selection round
  • 28 February 2024 for the third selection round

How the departmental scholarship scheme works

How to apply


In order to be considered for the Chemical Engineering PhD Scholarships, you will need to submit your PhD application for admission through the online admissions system. The programme title is 'Chemical Engineering (PhD)'. Your application form must include:

  • Full transcripts of your university studies to date.
  • A personal statement to support your application, which should outline your research interest and experience.
  • A copy of your English Language certificate if applicable. You must meet the College’s English language requirement at the higher level.
  • The contact details of two referees, at least one of whom must be an academic referee, for example your project supervisor or personal tutor. 

The scholarships are very competitive and our aim is to select the most outstanding PhD students and offer them financial support. Your application should demonstrate an outstanding academic record and research skills.


We have one selection process for all the scholarships that are administered by the College, including President's Scholarships, CSC Imperial Scholarships and the Departmental Scholarship.

You will need to submit your PhD application by the following deadlines in order to be considered for these:

  • Round 1:  31 October for entry in October of the following year
  • Round 2: 31 December for entry in October of the following year
  • Round 3: 28 February for entry in October of the same year

Please note that the majority of scholarships are likely to be allocated in Round 1. We therefore recommend that you submit your PhD application in time for the Round 1 deadline.

Please note that where there is a later deadline advertised for College scholarships, the departmental deadline before the College deadline will apply, as you will need to go through the departmental selection process, including interviews, before we can put you forward for a College Scholarship.

The selection process for departmental and College scholarships

An academic selection panel will screen the applications that demonstrate the necessary achievement and potential and will shortlist the most outstanding candidates for interview. If you are shortlisted and successful in your interview, you will be asked to select 2 projects offered by different supervisors in the order of your preference.

Once we have received the project selections from all the successful candidates, we will contact your first-choice and ask them if they are happy to take you on under the departmental scholarship scheme. If there is more than one successful applicant who wants to work with the same supervisor, the supervisor will be asked to choose the student who is most suited to the project. If you are not selected by your first-choice supervisor, we will contact your second-choice supervisor. If you are not selected by either of the supervisors, we will try our best to match you up with another eligible supervisor.

We will consider all successful applicants for any scholarships offered at College level and put forward the most outstanding candidates who fit the eligibility criteria for a particular scholarship.

What happens if my scholarship application is unsuccessful?

All the scholarships offered through the Department are highly competitive and it can happen that candidates who are academically very good will not be selected because the competition was too high. If your application meets the expected standard, we will be happy to make it available to potential supervisors, as they may be looking for students for funded projects. You may be contacted by a supervisor with details of a particular project and invited for an interview.

If you meet the academic requirements for PhD studies and you have your own funding, either as a self-funded student or through an external sponsor such as a sponsoring company, your employer, or the government of your home country, you will need to identify a potential supervisor (the list of academic research groups may be useful) who is prepared to supervise you subject to successful interview with an independent academic panel. The supervisor will need to put you forward for a self-funded interview.

What can I expect in the interview?

The scholarship interviews last for 20 minutes and will be held by a panel of academic staff, normally chaired by the Postgraduate Admissions Tutor. If you are based in or near London, the interview will be held in person; otherwise it will be by MS Teams video call. You should be prepared to answer technical questions related to your research interest, questions about your motivation, and generally demonstrate that you are an outstanding student.

When will I find out about my application?

We have two selection rounds for the Chemical Engineering PhD Scholarships and any of the College scholarships:

Round 1:

  • Application deadline: 31 October for October entry in the following year
  • The shortlisting panel will meet in mid-November and interviews will be held in late November or early December
  • Successful candidates will be notified within a week of the last interview and we will endeavour to allocate projects by the end of December

Round 2:

  • Application deadline: 31 December for October entry in the following year
  • The shortlisting panel will meet in mid-January and interviews will be held in late January or early February
  • Successful candidates will be notified within a week of the last interview and we will endeavour to allocate projects by the end of February

Round 3:

  • Application deadline: 28 February for October entry in the same year
  • The shortlisting panel will meet in mid-March and interviews will be held in late March or early April
  • Successful candidates will be notified within a week of the last interview and we will endeavour to allocate projects by the end of April

Application screening is done in line with the scholarship selection timeline. If you have external funding and need to be considererd for a self-funded interview outside these timelines, please contact us.

Who do I contact if I have any questions?

If you have any questions about the application process or any specific queries that are related to a PhD in the Department of Chemical Engineering our your PhD application, please email the Departmental PhD team

If you already hold an offer and have specific queries about fulfilling your offer condition, please contact the Engineering Admissions team.

Please remember to quote your College ID (CID) in all correspondence with the College.