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Ph.

D Topics December 2018

Sr. Topic Eligibility Category No. of


No position
available/A
dvisor

1 Direct laser lithography for energy BTech/MTech/MSc TA


harvesting applications

Description: Strategic patterning of material is


reported to lead enhanced performance in
photodevices. In this project, various simple
and complex structures will be conceived and
fabricated for specific applications in solar
cells.
2 Plasmonic metamaterials for sensing BTech/MTech/MSc TA
applications
Description: (Metamaterials is an upcoming
research field with many exciting
applications. Arranging micro and 1
nanostructures in predefined manner may (Shobha
alter the interaction of electromagnetic field Shukla)
with the materials. Here, we will make these
plasmonic nanostructures, characterize and
use for sensing applications.

3 Water purification using graphene BTech/MTech/MSc TA


composite materials
Description: Nanoporous graphene has
emerged as wonder materials for water
purification. Synthesis of graphene based
composite materials will be followed by
extensive characterization. Finally, water
treatment will be performed using this
material system.

4 All oxide superconducting devices M. Sc. In Physics, TA


M.Tech in Materials
Superconductor (S) / Half Metal (HM) films Science
(where both S and HM are oxides) in various
multilayered stacked forms will be fabricated
into either planar junctions or pillar type
trilayer
junctions in order to study the S/HM
proximity effect. The possibility of
developing an all oxide
spin valves will also be investigated.
5 Novel routes towards Graphene M. Sc. In Physics, TA
Spintronics M.Tech in Materials
Science or Electrical
The traditional approach to Graphene engineering.
spintronics has been by spin injection through 1
ferromagnetic contacts. However, last year (Avradee
exfoliable 2D ferromagnets have been p Pal)
discovered,
and Graphene devices coupled to
ferromagnetic insulators have not been
studied in detail.
Detailed hall bar characterizations of
Graphene either stacked with a 2D
ferromagnet or with
ferromagnetic insulators grown over them
will be studied to ascertain the possibility of
spintronics in graphene through these routes.

6 Preparation of vertically aligned carbon BE/Btech/M.Tech in TA


nanostructures for energy and sensor Metallurgy, materials
applications science and
nanotechnology.
Description: Using atmospheric plasma
M.Sc/M.Tech. in
growth method, vertically aligned carbon
nanostructures will be prepared on large area physics/applied
flexible substrates for energy and coating physics/electronics.
applications. The study involves preparation
of devices for the energy applications
(supercapacitors, J. Electroanal. Chem.
Volume 803, 2017, Pages 30-39) and
miniature sensors for the detection of the
impurities (RSC Adv., 2016, 6, 100383).
Device preparation for supercapacitors and
sensors will be based on methods already
established in the lab.
7 Corrosion sensor based on the interdigital BE/Btech/M.Tech in TA 1
Metallurgy, materials (Smrutir
patterns
science and anjan
Description: Objective is to design a nanotechnology. Parida)
corrosion sensor using interdigital electrode M.Sc/M.Tech. in
(IDE) system. The wrok is require to use the physics/applied
thin film processing such as PVD and CVD. physics/electronics
A new electrochemical patterning will also be
used for the the sensor design. After the
preparation of the IDE, electrochemical
testing of sensor will be done to measure the
paraterer of the merits such as potential,
impedance and capacitance.
8 Electrochemical additive manufacturing BE/Btech/M.Tech in TA
Metallurgy, materials
Description: Objective is to design a system
science and
for the electrochemical additive
manufacturing system. Electrochemical nanotechnology.
additive manufacturing will be a miniature M.Sc/M.Tech. in
mobile electrochemical cell with drive control physics/applied
position and height. The understanding of the physics/electronics/chem
established mechanisms of the istry.
electrochemical processes
(deposition/dissolution) at the micro- and
millimeter electrode will be used to create
varios 3D form and patterns on the surface.
The forms will be used for various
applications such as sensors and
supercapacitors.
9 Pressure sensitive patterns from the nano- BE/BTech/M.Tech in TA
carbon and conductive polymers Materials science,
polymer science and
Description: The project aims to prepare engineering, chemical
smart pressure responsive patterns using engineering, polymer
carbon nanomaterials and conductive engineering and
polymers. The patterns will be created using nanotechnology
hydrogels and hollow spheres prepared using (polymer specialization).
carbon nanomaterials and conductive M.Sc/M.Tech. in
polymers. The responsiveness of these Chemistry/applied
surfaces to the pressure will be tested using a chemistry/polymer/rubb
dynamic pressure system. er and plastic
engineering.

10 Layered hybrid materials for B.Tech./ BE or M.Tech. TA


supercapacitors and membranes in any relevant
Engineering discipline,
Three-dimensional (3D) hybrid carbon or M.Sc. in Chemistry or
nanomaterials are of considerable interest due Physics. Candidate
to their potential of combining merits of both should have good
one-dimensional (1D) and two-dimensional analytical and
(2D) nanostructures. 3D hierarchical quantitative skills
structures comprised of graphene and carbon
nanotubes provide a large accessible surface
area, which can enable high energy storage
and better catalytic activity making them ideal
for high-performance supercapacitors and
membranes. The organization of constituent
graphene and carbon nanotubes in hybrid
materials depends on the interplay of various
molecular level interactions, and determines
the properties and performance of hybrid
materials. This project will involve the use of
self-assembly based methods for fabrication
of hybrid nanostructures and molecular-level
computer simulations for predicting
interactions in hybrids.
11 Design and analysis of bio-inspired B.Tech./ BE or M.Tech. TA 1 (Ajay
membranes for ultra-pure separations in any relevant Panwar)
Engineering discipline,
There exist several examples in biology of
or M.Sc. in Chemistry or
ultra-fine pores in membranes which can
Physics. Candidate
purify or separate analytes with extreme
precision. Synthetic membranes composed of should have good
nanomaterials such as carbon nanotubes or analytical and
graphene, and functional polymers can be quantitative skills.
fabricated which mimic the essential
properties of biological membranes to achieve
analyte separation for industrial and
technological applications. This project will
involve the use of molecular-level computer
simulations to design and simulate analyte
separation through ultra-fine pore structures.
Simulation and analysis would help in
estimating transport coefficients and
optimizing device design for ultra-fast and
ultra-pure separations.
12 Polymer Nanocomposites for Piezoelectric M.Tech/M.Sc with TA
Applications Polymer Science &
Engineering/Chemical
It is observed that few polymeric materials,
Engineering/ Mechanical
viz. polyvinylydene fluoride (PVDF),
polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) exhibit piezoelectric Engineering/Physics/Ch
behaviour. This is due to the development of a emistry background is
specific crystal structure associated with desirable.
piezoelectric behaviour. Moreover, various
nano-fillers (carbon nano tubes, graphene
oxide) also induce that specific crystal
structure, which shows piezoelectric
behaviour. Further, orientation during
processing also leads to the metastable beta
phase for PVDF, which is responsible for the
piezoelectric behaviour. The scope of the
research project is to develop PVDF and PVA
based nanocomposites, which show enhanced
piezoelectric properties. In this context,
processing-structure-property relationship
studies will be investigated
13 Films and Fibers of Graphene and Carbon M.Tech/M.Sc with TA 1 (Arup
nanotubes incorporated Polymer Polymer Science & Bhattach
Nanocomposites Engineering/Chemical arya)
Engineering/ Mechanical
It is known that orientation during processing Engineering/Physics/Ch
leads to the alignment of the nano-materials emistry background is
along with polymer chains. Moreover, a desirable
higher extent of orientation can be achieved if
the interfacial interaction between the
polymer phase and the nano-material can be
judiciously tailored. The scope of the project
is to develop hybrid nano-filler based polymer
composite fiber or film for various industrial
applications. In this context, processing-
dispersion-interfacial interaction-
crystallization behaviour-property
relationship studies will be investigated.

14 Localized thermomechanical properties in Candidate with M.Sc./ TA


confined polymer nanocomposites: M.Tech with Physics/
Chemical Engineering/
Understanding of mechano-rheological
Chemistry/ Polymer
properties of polymer nanocomposite is
Science & Engineering/
expected to advance designing of
Materials Science &
mechanically improved polymer
Engineering/ Mechanical
nanocomposites (PNC) with optimum particle
Engineering background
loading and desired functionalities. On the
is suitable.
question of confinement and glass transitions,
PNC is comparable to a polymer thin film,
where the interparticle distance in the
nanocomposite could be comparable to the
film thickness dictating the extent of
confinement and reportedly shown variation
in glass transition temperature (Tg). Beyond
this simplistic picture it has been found that
confinement (from film thickness) in polymer
thin film enhances nanoparticle dispersion in
polymer matrix. The enhanced dispersion
takes place without altering the polymer–
particle interactions, whereas, nanoparticles in
a bulk polymer matrix are known to alter the
entanglement and stress relaxation in
polymers. How and why the viscous/
viscoelastic properties in PNC films distinct 1
compare to polymer film are is an interesting (Mithun
area to explore and signify further questions Chowdh
in PNC films should be addressed in a way ury)
that exploits nanoparticle-polymer interaction
in a localized and controllable manner. In the
proposed work by spatially incorporating
polymers, nanoparticles and PNC films in a
multilayer geometry, viscous flow at the
suitable polymer-nanoparticle or polymer-
PNC interface will be probed. In-situ hot-
stage optical and atomic force microscopy
will be employed to primarily probe
topographical features and their relaxation in
PNC films, whereas, at the advanced stage X-
ray reflectivity and/ or dielectric spectroscopy
could be used. For X-Ray studies appropriate
Synchrotron sources (around the world) will
be used upon requirement and advancement
of the project.

15 Fundamental studies on controlling Candidate with M.Sc./ TA


orientation and crystallinity in semi- M.Tech with Physics/
crystalline functional polymers: Chemical Engineering/
Chemistry/ Polymer
The central idea to enhance the performance
Science & Engineering
of organic electronic devices is to tune the
background is suitable.
way excitons and electrons (holes) travel
within the active conjugated material by
controlling its morphology, crystallinity,
aggregation, and domain purity. Many studies
aimed to enhance the long-range ordering
(crystallinity) in semi-crystalline conjugated
polymers, whereas, role of short-range
ordering primarily by pi-stacking induced
aggregation also remain beneficial for exciton
diffusion and carrier mobility. Especially the
interlamellar region and their role on
structure-property relationship is yet to be
fully understood. The proposed research
project will particularly probe mostly-
amorphous (less-crystalline) yet high
performance conjugated polymeric materials
and exploit its ability to reorganize into
relatively ordered domains via controlled
inclusion of its small-molecule (or short
chain) analogues utilizing controlled blending
and annealing. The process will be extended
with acceptor molecules and small molecules
having complexation abilities by charge
transfer. Beyond conjugated polymers, at the
advanced level the project will also
investigate controlling orientation and
crystallinity in ferroelectric/ piezoelectric
polymers, such as PVDF. Upon satisfactory
progress and understanding of structural
properties, experiments could be extended
towards characterizing optoelectronic and
transport properties, if needed, seeking
appropriate collaborations within the institute.
Microscopic (optical and atomic force),
Spectroscopic (UV-VIS and Fluorescence)
and X-ray diffraction studies will be primarily
used. Processing of semi-crystalline polymers
will be performed through precision hot-stage
and custom-built solvent annealing stage. For
X-Ray studies appropriate Synchrotron
sources (around the world) will be used upon
requirement and advancement of the project.

16 Physico-chemical phenomena during Metallurgical TA/RA 1 (N N


induration of single hematite pellet engineering or chemical Viswanat
engineering. Should han)
Proportion of pellets in lieu of iron ore have interest in
sinter is being is thermodynamics,
increasing in iron making processes as more chemical reaction
spherical uniform size kinetics and transport
pellets gives better permeability. On the phenomena
other hand, with decreasing grade of iron ore,
liberation and benefeciation
calls for finer size, which again favour
pelletization process. Though
there are numerous studies to understand
induration of hematite pellets mixed with
carbon, these studies
primary empirical in nature without seriously
going in the processes
occuring with in the pellets. Recently such
work has been carried out for magnetite
pellets using optical dilatometer. Along the
same
lines, this project proposes to look at the
physico-chemical phenomena,
which includes, reaction of carbon particles in
the hematite pellet,
sintering hematite mixed with fluxes and
associated heat and mass transfer. The work
will be a combination of experiments and
modeling.

17 Analysing the role of defects and dopants MSc/ MTech TA 1


in modulating the magnetic and electronic (Amrita
properties of Heusler compounds Bhattach
arya)
18 Encapsulants for Photovoltaic modules M.Tech or M.Sc. TA/RA
Background in polymers
The aim of the project is to evaluate the and Hands on experience
various types of encapsulants and back sheets in chemical synthesis/
use for protecting the solar cells in a PV characterization is
module. The evaluation will require detailed desired.
mechanical, optical and chemical
characterization of the polymeric
encapsulants and back sheets.
1
(Sudhans
hu
Mallick)
19 Perovskite based solar cells :M.Tech or M.Sc. TA/RA
Hands on experience in
The aim of the project is to develop large area chemical synthesis/
perovskite based solar cells and detailed characterization is
characterization to improve the cell lifetime desired
and efficiency.

20 Thermo-physical properties of molten Metallurgical engg. / TA


oxides and halides - modelling at the nano Ceramics / Chemistry
and sub-nano scale (M.Sc.) - preferably with
specialisation in physical
Understanding the high temperature or inorganic chemistry /
properties (like viscosity and interfacial Chemical engg.. (in
tension) of oxide and halide melts, in terms of
decreasing order of
ordering and ionic arrangements. Suitable
preference)
modelling approach would have to be
developed to simulate the physical properties,
followed by validation with experimentally
measured values. 1
(Somnat
h Basu)
21 Fusion and flow characteristics of FeO-rich Metallurgical / Ceramics TA
oxide melts / Chemical /
Mechanical engineering.
This project would focus primarily on
incipient melts encountered during metal Applicants with M.Sc.
oxide reduction, typical examples being iron Chemistry background
oxide reduction in a BF or COREX. The work are also welcome,
would involve estimation of intermediate provided they have done
compositions, experimental determination of M.Tech. in
liquidus and viscosity measurement of the ME&MS/equivalent,
incipient oxide melts over relevant
preferably with
temperature range(s). The results would then
specialisation in Process
be used to develop a mathematical model to
predict the sequence of melt formation, the Metallurgy (in
local compositions (as opposed to the gross decreasing order of
reported composition) and the flow preference):
characteristics of the different liquid streams.
It is expected that this would eventually
provide an insight into the effect of these
liquid steams on the kinetics of the gas-solid
reactions that occur during pyrometallurgical
extraction of several metals.
22 Role of thermal vibrations on phase BTech/MTech/MSc TA 1 (T R S
stability/transitions Prasanna
)
Predicting the stability of any material is an
area of current research in materials science.
This topic involves the first principles (ab
initio)calculations of the free energy of
different phases at different temperatures and
pressures to determine the phase stability. In
particular, the role of thermal vibrations on
phase stability will be carefully studied. This
is expected to lead to better understanding of
phase stability and phase transitions. The
phase transition temperatures and pressures
will be compared with experimental data.

23 Fabrication of flexible and stretchable TA


electronic devices
1 (Dipti
Gupta)
24 Fabrication of flexible pressure and strain TA
sensors for biomedical
applications
TAP
1 Mopping oil with graphene based BTech/MTech/MSc TAP
composite sponge
RD/0118
Description: Superhydrophobic graphene-
-
framework is expected to be an excellent 1 (Shobha
DST0000 Shukla)
candidate for oil adsorbent. Oxidized
-010
graphene frame-work is hydrophilic in
nature and can be used directly for
removing organic contaminants from
water. Here we plan to reduce and convert
the framework from hydrophilic to
superhydrophobic for applications in
organic materials removal. The ultimate
aim of this project will be to focus on
development of processes and devices that
can be implemented in coastal areas after
extensive characterization and studies.

2 Silver Pastes for solar PV and other M.Tech. Materials TAP


industrial applications science or
Nanotechnology, M.Sc.
The fellowship will be 1.5 times the regular chemistry (organic). 1 (Parag
TA but there is lack of clarity on whether Candidates with Bhargava)
tuition fee would have to be paid by the background/experience
student or not. The candidate will be in materials
required to do three courses in Tata Centre characterization and
in addition to prescribed regular courses. interested in industrial
research or product
development would be
preferred.

3 Superconducting proximity effect studies M.Tech Materials TAP


with ferromagnetic insulators. Science, M. Sc. In (seed
Physics, some grant)
The project involves ultra-high vacuum 1
experience in vacuum
(UHV) sputter growth of thin films of (Avradeep
systems preferable.
superconducting Nb, Al and NbN and Pal)
ferromagnetic insulating GdN, and
subsequently multi-layers of these
materials in various combinations
depending on the physics to be probed.
Standard thin films characterization
techniques like AFM, Low Angle XRD,
TEM will be employed to study quality of
films and multilayers. Low temperature
(4K) Current in plane measurements will
be then used to study the proximity effect.
The initial part of the project will involve
participation in setting up an UHV sputter
deposition system.
4 Development of Passive daytime BE/BTech/M.Tech in TAP
radiative cooling (PDRC) coatings Materials science,
polymer science and
Description: The project aims to prepare engineering, chemical 1
smart responsive nanomaterials using engineering, polymer (Smrutira
emulsion polymerization methods already engineering and njan
Parida)
established in the lab (Polymer 118, 2017, nanotechnology
116-126). These materials and method will (polymer specialization).
be used to create Passive daytime radiative M.Sc/M.Tech. in
cooling (PDRC) coatings. The Chemistry/applied
responsiveness of these smart materials in chemistry/polymer/rubb
the coating to temperature will be tested. er and plastic
The temperature sensitivity will be tested engineering
by exposing the coating to the sun and
measuring solar reflectance index (SRI)
using the instrument available in the lab.
5 Development of high performance M Tech/B.Tech/MSc in TAP
hybrid supercapacitors based on Materials
The
nanostructure carbon and core/shell Si Science/Engineering project is
nanowires (and associated areas) sponsored
and/or physics/chemistry by the
Description: The project will focus on
Departme 1
development of the nanostructure carbon
nt of (Smrutira
and core/shell Si nanowires (NW) by CVD
Science njan
method, which involve optimization of the and Parida)
process parameters to tune the structure Technolog
(length, thickness of core/shell) of the y (DST),
nanowires. The surface of the NWs will be Govt. of
modified by conformal deposition of metal India, and
oxide and conducting polymer coatings, to the
prepare hybrid device. These electrodes scholarshi
will be used to assemble supercapacitors of p will be
various symmetric and asymmetric as per the
regular
configurations (RSC Adv., 2016, 6,
SRF or
100467). After studying the individual
JRF DST
devices, the supercapattery stacks will be norms (as
designed based on the output voltage and applicable
power requirements. . ). The
IITB
project
code is:
RD/0117-
DST0000-
029.

6 Identifying materials with improved MSc/ MTech TAP


properties by combining advance
(Seed
machine learning approaches with first
1 (Amrita
principles based methods grant) Bhattacha
rya)

7 Role of processing conditions of Candidate with M.Sc./ TAP


polymers on the mechano-rheological M.Tech with Physics/ (Seed
properties of confined glassy thin films: Chemical Engineering/ Grant)
Chemistry/ Polymer 1 (Mithun
In a simple picture, compared to bulk Chowdhu
Science & Engineering/
polymers, sufficiently thin polymer films ry)
Materials Science &
are expected to have a lower-density due to
Engineering/ Mechanical
poor packing, since chains do not
Engineering background
significantly interpenetrate each other due
is suitable.
to high entropy losses. This may
correspond to a reduction of the glass
transition temperature (Tg) of the polymer
film, which in turn, can be related to the
lower density of a polymer film deposited
on solid substrate. On the other hand,
extent of adsorption of polymer chains at
the substrate interface during annealing
above the Tg of polymer dictates the Tg
deviation of thin polymer films, where a
poorly packed, high free volume, less dense
adsorbed layer of restricted mobility is
expected at the substrate. At this point it is
not clear how the Tg of entire film
including the surface is perturbed by the
interfacial adsorbed layer, and how the
extent of non-equilibrium properties of
polymer chains is contributing to the
material properties (density, modulus) of
the entire film. Primarily, using techniques
like atomic force microscopy, optical
microscopy, ellipsometry and/or X-ray
reflectivity the adsorbed layer of
polystyrene will be characterized. To probe
the non-equilibrium properties related to
viscoelasticity and density in the entire
film, hole growth and adsorption approach
will be applied, those will be further
characterized by atomic force and optical
microscopy. At the advanced stage of the
project relaxation dynamics can be
followed using dielectric spectroscopy.
8 Flux-assisted inclusion engineering Metallurgical / TAP 1
Mechanical / (Somnath
DST Basu)
This project would focus on the influence Chemical engineering(i (approve
of welding flux composition on the n decreasing order of d)
chemistry and morphology of inclusions preference):
generated in the melt pool during high heat
input (and deep pool) welding process (e.g.
SAW of thick plates). It would further
investigate the effect the inclusions on the
morphology and orientation of the grains
formed in the weld metal during cooling,
and explore if specific inclusions can be
used to "engineer" the microstructure of the
welded joint.

The work would be part of a BRICS STI


framework project, proposed in
collaboration with Northeastern University
(China) and University of Pretoria (South
Africa), which has just been approved by
DST. One JRF position would be supported
for a period of three years. Portions of the
work would be carried out at the partner
universities and DST would support the
travel expenses of the research scholar
(within the terms of the grant). The prime
focus of the work at IITB will be to
investigate the flow behaviour and
interfacial properties of molten fluxes, and
their interaction(s) with inclusions as well
as the molten steel. The experimental
results (from all three partner institutions)
would then be collated and used for
developing a model to explain the
formation and growth of the inclusions, as
well as it influence on evolution of the
weld metal microstructure.
9. Omni-Directional Micro-TIG Cladding Metallurgical / TAP 1 (K
for Hybrid Layered Manufacturing Mechanical Engineering Narasimh
(16DSTI an)
(HLM)
MP001
(MHRD
Metal Inert Gas (MIG) and Tungsten
IMPRIN
Inert Gas (TIG) are the two types of arc
T project
cladding processes. Omni-directionality
on
refers to the invariance of the geometry and
quality of the bead with the path of the Multi-
cladding torch. This is an essential Station
requirement in HLM. Both energy and Multi-
mass flow from the same source in MIG Axis
whereas they are from two different
sources in TIG. Therefore, MIG inherently HLM)
has omni-directionality but suffers poor
bead quality due to the lack of independent
control of these flows and vice-versa in
TIG. As the quality of bead is better in
TIG, we wish to develop a special
mechanismfor varyingthe orientation of
wire feeding to achieve omni-
directionality.

Traditional arc cladding


usefillersstarting from 1.2mm and hence
produce very large beads and involve
extensive heat. Therefore, we propose to
develop a micro-TIG which will use wires
as thin as 0.2mm.

After the development of omni-


directional micro-TIG cladding system, a
systematic set of experiments will be
carried out to study the effect of various
parameters on the bead quality,
microstructure and mechanical properties,
which in turn will be used to arrive at
optimum process parameters. Finally, a few
case studies of complex geometries and
exotic materials will be carried out using
the developed omni-directional micro-TIG
HLM system.

10 Development of Low Corrosion Rate B.Tech metallurgy / TAP 1


Completion Fluid Formulation for High corrosion engg / (Smrutira
Pressure High Temperature Oil and Gas chemical engg. MTech njan
Parida)
Wells in metallurgy / corrosion
engg / chemical engg /
*Description:* The project will focus on
Materials Science /
development of a low corrosion completion
Materials engg. M.Sc in
fluid for the high pressure and high
chemistry / chemical
temperature gal well. Drilling is carried out
technology / applied
using drilling fluids or drilling muds to
chemistry
remove the rock cuttings and keep the hole
stabilized. Once target depth is attained, the
well completion process starts to get oil
and gas production from the well.
Completion fluids are specially designed to
aid in completion operations. The most
commonly used completion fluids are clear
brines. These brines can be composed of
one type of dissolved salt (single salt), or
mixture of two more inorganic/organic
salts that are compatible with one another
and do not contain any suspended solid
mass. Oil wells have temperature beyond
150°C and may reach as high as 250°C. In
this condition corrosion happens in the
brine used. So the objective is to design a
non-corrosive, clear and environmental
friendly aqueous completion fluid and test
its corrosiveness and stability in high
temperature and pressure.