Hello! My name is Elena Patyukova and I’m going to start my Marie Curie carrier restart project at the Chemical Engineering and Applied Chemistry (CEAC) Department in September.
My project is dedicated to combined theoretical and experimental study of influence of hydrogen bonds formation on microphase separation in block copolymers. The focus of this study is on development of the model describing formation of hydrogen bonds in block copolymers whose parameters are well experimentally defined and measurable values, which will be taken directly from experiment. At the second step this model will be verified by comparing experimental and theoretical behavior AB/A block copolymer mixture, where A monomer units are able to form hydrogen bonds with each other.
For me personally this is a very interesting project, aiming to find answers to questions on microphase separation which are remain unanswered now. I’ve devoted a lot of time to studies of microphase separation phenomenon and I love it. It is beautiful. But also I would like to mention that hydrogen bonding block copolymers are of interest because of their potential applications are really abundant and include drug delivery, self-healing materials and nanolithography and patterning for microelectronics.
Marie Curie Carrier Restart Fellowship is a really unique opportunity to return to active research after carrier break alone with obtaining new competences through additional training. In my case it looks the following way. Basically I was trained as a theoretician in the field of polymers physics. After getting PhD degree I continued my studies for a year and than left research. During my carrier break I worked in microelectronics industry as an engineer for three years, then I gave birth to my daughter and arrived in the UK following my husband who got a job at Aston University. And now thanks to Marie Curie Fellowship I am looking forward to return to research in the field of polymer science significantly expanding my experience, namely getting training in RAFT-synthesize and experimental techniques of block copolymer materials characterization under supervision of Dr. Paul Topham, and in new theoretical method under supervision of Dr. Martin Greenall from Lincoln University. So you can easily estimate how much this fellowship is going to give me, and it is difficult to find appropriate words to describe my inspiration about it. I am really thrilled to plunge into the work and see what it will lead me to in the future.
Of cause the chance I got would not be possible without kind attitude and wish to let me try to prepare grant application, and help with this application demonstrated by Prof. Misha Sumetsky, Prof. Sergey Turitsyn, Paul Knobbs, Dr. Paul Topham, Dr. Martin Greenall. I am very grateful to all of them. For me this is an exemplar of openness and goodwill towards people, which I hope to copy in my life.
As it is customary on this blog I promise to share my experience of working at Aston as my Marie Curie project progress with time. I hope that it will be interesting for those who is in the similar position as I was some time before, wishing to restart their research carriers.