Roberta’s report on Chemistry Innovation’s 2012 Associates Meeting

Latest “Chemistry Innovation’s 2012 Associates Meeting” took place on March 13-14 in Lancaster. UCLan was presented by Roberta Dessi, a PhD student of a Chemistry Innovation program, and Andrei Zvelindovsky. It is the major event of the year for post-doc and for us PhD researchers working on Industrial CASE (Cooperative Awards in Science and Engineering ) Awards, currently managed by Chemistry Innovation. The main goal of the conference was to give us the opportunity to meet the industrial sponsors to discuss individual projects, network and learn more about the wider activities of Chemistry Innovation. We were not more than sixty participants, but actually it gave more opportunity to get know each other, facilitated by some group activities. During this two-days several experts speakers took turns to give some advice and a general view about the opportunity for the future job, with both industrialist and academic perspective. I found it very useful to get a wide vision of the work possibility for the future. Not to mention the full availability and patience of the experts to answer to all our questions. The conference gave even the opportunity to us PhD to describe own work with poster exhibitions and oral presentations. Exciting arguments ranging from: the development of new synthesis of organic materials with the purpose to improve the features of organic transistor (Matthew Levick, PhD Student at Manchester University); the use of the cellulose (obtained from the plant of Miscanthus giganteus) as renewable source for the production of energy (Ricardo Roque at Birmingham University); antimicrobial polymer materials, as a possible remedy for infections (Malcolm Kinninmonth, PhD Student at Manchester Metropolitan University). I had the opportunity to present our group’s poster about my current PhD project untitled “Laterally confined diblock copolymer”.
My subject of research was the only one relative to computer simulation between several experimental works. Therefore, it was quite interesting, but sometimes even difficult, to try to explain how to do the computer simulations, and what are the principles at the base. This event gave me the opportunity to exchange ideas and opinions with another experimental PhD and to highlight the importance of this powerful tool, which is modelling. Because, the latter can be used alongside experimentation to add value directing and improving the quality of the experiments.
I was delighted to attend this useful and pleasant  event that has absolutely contributed to my PhD project.

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