PhD Scholarship in Musculoskeletal Biomedical Technologies

Boroondara, Australia
22 Dec 2017
End of advertisement period
31 Mar 2018
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time
  • Faculty of Science, Engineering and Technology
  • Musculoskeletal Biomedical Technologies
  • 3 year PhD scholarship, Hawthorn location

About the scholarship 

Swinburne Faculty of Science Engineering and Technology is offering a ICHDR (Industrial Transformation Training Center Higher Degree by Research) Scholarship (annual stipend $31,828 for three years with a possible 6 month extension) to an outstanding applicant (local or international) who has graduated with a 4 year Bachelors Degree or a Master of Engineering Degree in mechanical engineering (thermal spray/ additive manufacturing and/or testing and characterisation of thin films focus) or material sciences (metallurgy and crystallography, or ceramic engineering). A knowledge of biological materials and testing methods would be desirable. The successful applicant will be located at the Swinburne University of Technology campus in Hawthorn, Melbourne, Australia and the project will start by early 2018. The HDR Scholarship will be offered on a competitive basis with the following applicant criteria considered: skill set relevant to the project (breadth and depth – experience in coating deposition, powder metallurgy and thin film characterisation methods), publications (journal quality, author position, citations), prior exposure to relevant research, and academic performance.

The ICHDR Scholarship is sponsored by the Australian Research Council in the area of “Bioactive ceramic coatings with antimicrobial properties to increase orthopaedic implant longevity”. This is a collaboration with the University of Sydney. This focused project aims to develop a family of ceramic coatings for orthopaedic implants, featuring osteogenic and antimicrobial properties coupled with high bonding strength to prevent premature implant failure. This will reduce the costs associated with revision surgery and greatly improve the recipients’ long-term quality of life. 

The short lifespan of orthopaedic implants is a major clinical problem, where failure often occurs within a few months as a result of infection, or within 10–15 years due to loosening. Most orthopaedic implants use titanium alloys (Ti-6Al-4V), which often cannot achieve sufficient integration with bone, and currently used hydroxyapatite coatings are prone to delamination and fragmentation. This project will develop a family of patented ceramics for use as novel implant coatings: Baghdadite (US patent 9,005,647), Sr-HT (US patent 8,765,163), and Sr-HT-Gahnite (US patent 9,220,806). We will optimise the plasma-spraying process for coating deposition to produce high bonding strength while ensuring that the inherent bioactivity and antimicrobial properties of the ceramics are retained.

Skills and experience

To be successful in this role you will need to demonstrate the following:

  • Degree in relevant area of science or engineering.
  • Experience in coating deposition techniques of thermal spray and laser cladding.
  • Experience in powder metallurgy and mechanical alloying such as ball milling.
  • High-level knowledge of metallurgical and materials phase transformation theory (i.e., crystallography, phase diagrams etc.).

A full list of the selection criteria is available within the position description

How to apply

To start an application click on 'begin' at the bottom of this page and submit a resume, cover letter and response to the Key Selection Criteria, as listed in the Position Description below.

Please do not email or send paper applications, all applications must be submitted online.

For further information about the position, please contact Chris Berndt (Professor Surface Science and Interface Engineering) or Andrew Ang (Research Engineer) on +613 9214 8706 or +613 9214 4964, respectively. 

If you are experiencing technical difficulties with your application, please contact the Recruitment team on +61 3 9214 8600 (option 2).

Applications close at 5pm on Saturday 31st March 2018