2018 cohort

  • ‌Benjamin Carter

Project title: Networks Across the Lengthscales: Self-assembled Gels from Molecules to Colloids

Primary supervisor: Tom Machon

  •  Teodoro Garcia Milan

Teo graduated in 2016 with a BCs in Nanotechnology in his native country, Mexico. He completed an internship the same year in an electrochemistry centre, developing electrodes for detection of lanthanides. In 2017, he moved to Bristol to undertake his MSc with the BCFN where he acquired all the guidance of a young researcher. His experience in Bristol was a milestone in his career development so, he decided to extend his endeavour to a PhD degree with the BCFN. Teo is now investigating the tuneability of carbon-based fluorescent nanoparticles, working in collaboration with DST Innovations for the development of printable digital displays.

Project title: Carbon dot-derived nanocomposites towards novel luminescent materials

Primary supervisor: Carmen Galan

  •   Laura Graser

2012-2015: training as a biological laboratory assistant at the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg, Germany

2015-2019: B.Sc. Biotechnology at Mannheim University of Applied Sciences in Mannheim, Germany. This included a 6 months internship in Prof. Rafael Carazo Salas group at the University of Bristol in 2017. My placement for my bachelor thesis was at BioMedX in Heidelberg, Germany, and my project was about the ‘Generation and Characterization of Mutant Splicing-factor Cancer Cell Lines’.

Since April 2019: PhD in Prof. Rafael Carazo Salas’ group and I am investigating the causes of mitotic defects in human Pluripotent Stem Cells (hPSCs) and their effects on the tumorigenic potential on hPSCs. To find these genes/pathways of interest, we are going to use high throughput CRISPRn screenings and a semi-automated pipeline for image analysis.

Project title: Unravelling the molecular mechanisms that drive cytokinetic defects and multipolar mitosis in human Pluripotent Stem Cells and their potential impact in tumorigenic potential

Primary supervisor: Rafael Carazo Salas

  •  Callum Kirby  

Callum graduated from the University of Manchester with a BSc in Developmental Biology, completing his final year project studying a disease model in bone Stem Cells. During his studies, Callum also completed a year in industry: working in Reno, USA, studying blood pressure regulation in the brain. Callum is jointly funded by the BCFN and AstraZeneca, investigating the role of mitotic defects in human Pluripotent Stem Cells' capacity to become cancerous. Errors during mitosis may generate numerical aneuploidy and catastrophic DNA mutation events, providing a route to tumour formation. This work is being undertaken using live, multiday Confocal Microscopy, from which we lineage single cells to understand exact histories of potentially oncogenic cell behaviour.

Project title: Unravelling the molecular mechanisms that drive mitotic defects in human Pluripotent Stem Cells and their potential impact in tumourigenic potential.

Primary supervisor: Rafael Carazo Salas

  •  Maximillain Kloucek

Project title: Searching for Criticality: From Proteins to Neural Networks

Primary supervisor: Paddy Royall

  •  Emily Luke 

Emily graduated from the University of Bristol in 2018 with an MSci in Chemistry. She became interested in research through several small research projects that she carried out during her undergraduate, including her master’s project where she worked on ionic self-assembly. Her research project with the BCFN looks at creating new nanostructures of high-temperature superconductors for various applications, such as in terahertz devices.

Project title: Engineering novel nanostructures of high-temperature superconductors

Primary supervisor: Simon Hall

  •  Hilary McCarthy

Project title: Exploring the functional role of natural photonic structures in plants and algae

Primary supervisor: Heather Whitney

  •  Geogina Plant

Georgina graduated from the University of Lancaster in 2018 with an MPhys in Physics. Her masters project investigating the optical properties of quantum rods sparked her interest in nanomaterials. She joined the BCFN to further explore this interest. As part of the BCFN, she now works in the bridge between physics and biology in Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) research.

Project title: Real-time monitoring of the effects of antibiotics and immunological components on N. gonorrhoeae at the single cell level

Primary supervisor: Darryl Hill

  • Xiaoyu Sun

Xiaoyu Sun joined the BCFN in 2018 as a PhD student after obtaining his MSc in Physics at the University of Bristol. His PhD project is investigating a simulation method and fabrication methodology for low-cost and flexible ultrasonic array devices. He is particularly interested in this project, as this project allows him to explore the research boundary in practical applications.

Project title: Investigations of a low cost, conformable ultrasonic phased array for long term installation

Primary supervisor: Bruce Drinkwater

  • Sami Ullah

Sami Ullah joined BCFN in September 2018 after having spent less than a year in Taiwan working on 2D materials based Energy devices at NTHU, Taiwan. His PhD project, under the supervision of Dr. Neil Fox, deals with the Physical Vapor Deposition technique of depositing and characterising the thin layer of metals and potential intercalation between different metals on the surface of diamond as a potential NEA imparting termination to the Diamond surface for constructing low work function devices. He focuses on employing a range of Photoemission based characterisation techniques such as XPS, Spa- LEED, Micro ARPES, UPS etc. to measure the electronic properties of different low dimension materials and diamond for thermionic application and diamond betavoltaics.

Project title: Low work function diamond surfaces for thermionic energy conversion and diamond betavoltaics

 Primary supervisor: Neil Fox

  •  Laurent Vaughan

Laurent graduated with a MSc in Quantum Technology from the University of Sussex. His masters project focused on controlling the alignment of silver nanowires for tuneable polarizing films. Since joining the 2018 BCFN cohort, he has explored two short projects with the first regarding 3D printing thermoplastics and platinum nanoparticle composites for soft robotics. The second focused on imaging and analysing the dynamics of active matter particles within electric fields. Outside his work, Laurent is one of the captains for Advanced tennis at University of Bristol, enjoys cooking a lot, and hopes to go to Japan one day.

Project title: Experimental Realisation of Phase Behaviour and Self Assembly of Colloidal Tetrahedra

Primary supervisor: Paddy Royall

  •  Marcos Villeda Hernandez

Marcos grew up in the outskirts of Mexico City and obtained a BSc degree in Nanotechnology and molecular engineering from the Universidad de Las Americas Puebla (UDLAP) in Puebla. Mexico, 2016. During his degree he had the opportunity to work in the research projects: Development, synthesis and characterisation of nanomaterials, thin sol-gel TiO2-SiO2coatings using the dip-coating method, and Electrochemistry study of the Zinc reduction over glassy carbon and platinum electrodes using 2-AmineEthanol and Choline Chloride as support electrolytes. In 2017 Marcos joined the Bristol Centre for Functional Nanomaterials CDT as an MSc student. Immediately after obtaining his MSc degree, IN 2018, Marcos started his PhD as part of the BCFN working in the soft-robotics and 3D-printing fields. 

In his spare time, he enjoys cycling, going out with his friends, and practising sports of any kind.

Project title: Nano-Catalyst Laden Filaments for 3D-Printed Pneumatic Soft Artificial Muscles

Primary supervisor: Charl Faul

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