Placement Students (Chemistry)Apply Now
At CPI we work with our partners to translate inventions into products and processes that enhance health and well-being, protect and improve our environment and increase productivity across industries.
With a deep understanding of innovation processes and funding, outstanding technical expertise and industry relevant assets, we enable products and processes to be quickly and cost-effectively brought to market. This supports the development of next-generation manufacturing, highly-skilled jobs and economic growth for the UK.
Our partners operate across many diverse markets including pharmaceuticals, speciality chemicals, food and drink, electronics and transportation.
Why this role is important for CPI’s work
We are seeking to recruit a number of 12-month placement students to prepare, test and report elements in projects, in line with business unit strategy and industry needs, in order to contribute to the technical delivery of projects. You will also be responsible for supporting the smooth running of laboratories and actively supporting the Safety, Health, Environment and Quality (SHEQ) objectives. Duties of the roles include:
- To be responsible for discussing project needs; set up, plan and execute scientific experiments and report results to agreed timescales.
- To contribute to the delivery of projects through the delivery of scientific knowledge.
- To be responsible for providing clearly documented records of technical data, decisions, methodologies, calculations and software use in an agreed format.
We have opportunities for Chemistry/Physics/Materials Science students to join the following teams (you may wish to make a note in your cover letter which of the team(s) you would be interested in joining):
Colloid Science (Formulation Business Unit)
The Colloid Science team is made up of chemists, physicists and material scientists with experience and knowledge from a broad range of industry sectors, and this is reflected in the nature of the projects we work on. These include, but are not limited to:
- Pharmaceuticals and vaccines
- Food science
- Home and personal care products
- Paints, coatings and inks
The team specialises in understanding how to make and develop complex liquid formulations, describe their behaviour, and characterise critical performance attributes. This involves optimising formulations involving nanoparticles (including nanomedicines), nanoemulsions and nanodispersions, gels and foams with a variety of morphologies including encapsulation, surface functionalisation, and structured particles. Characterisation typically includes particle size and distribution, rheological and flow properties, and stability. The design and development of novel test methods for specific end-use applications is also often required.
The lab is equipped with a wide range of tools to achieve this. Formulation production and optimisation can be carried out within microfluidic environments, on bench top apparatus and taken to pilot scale. Characterisation techniques range from spectroscopy and electron microscopy to mechanical testing, scattering techniques and surface characterisation.
Nanomaterials (Formulation Business Unit)
The Nanomaterials and Composites team focuses on the synthesis and application of nanomaterials, such as graphene, copper, silver and carbon nanotubes, and the production of new composite materials such as biodegradable thermoplastics, carbon fibre resins and embedded or printed electronics. Working in this team involves operating to industry best practice on the handling and application of nanomaterials allowing us to both work safely and to best help our customers.
Our nanomaterial and composite characterisation capability include state of the art instruments such as: Scanning Electron Microscopy, Atomic Force Microscopy, mechanical testing, electrical characterisation, mechanical testing and thermal testing. These suite of characterisation techniques allows us to understand our products from the nanoscale through to the macroscale. Recently, we have worked in projects as diverse as:
- New battery materials
- Printed sensors
- Biodegradable thermoplastics
- Catalysts for environmental remediation
The team combines a fundamental understanding of the science of nano- and composite materials with a knowledge of scaled, industrially relevant processes. The work of the nanomaterials team is very diverse and involves bringing cutting-edge science to new and existing industries.
Materials Science (Formulation Business Unit)
A placement student who joins the Materials Science team would contribute to applying deep scientific knowledge to link a material’s structure to its application performance, allowing knowledge-based optimisation of material design. As part of a multidisciplinary team you will be utilising a wide range of quantitative and qualitative chemical, physical and material property measurements including extensive capability in the areas of microscopy, spectroscopy, chromatography, thermal analysis, mechanical and tribological testing. You will join a team with many decades of combined experience across a wide range of industries (for example: coatings, inks, polymers, chemicals, electronics, advanced materials). Through a wide diversity of projects, you will gain experience across a range of industry applications including batteries, healthcare, personal care, pharmaceutics, to name a few.
The combination of capability and expertise enables innovative problem-solving approaches to understand materials properties, failure modes, and improve performance of products & processes.
Process Technology (Formulation Business Unit)
Chemistry students who join the Process Technology team will gain first-hand experience of developing and optimising laboratory scale processes across all process industries and will use these results to help design full-scale commercial plants. You will have the opportunity to work with lab equipment and different analytical techniques. We work on commercial and collaborative research projects from £20K to £1m scale and you will become an important part of project delivery. Process Technology is a growing team of 22 Process Chemists and Process Engineers and we work closely together to develop viable novel technologies and processes. This means solving new and complex problems and constantly finding creative ways of working, thus giving you unique exposure to a wide range of process solutions. The team also leads on chemical and process safety within Formulation.
You can meet some of the existing team here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WruU4BDMrrQ
Process Technology team placement students in the past have worked on projects which include:
- Converting a lab scale batch process into a lab scale continuous process
- Altering and optimising a lab-based pilot plant to demonstrate the viability of a new technology
- Using lab results to inform the flow-sheeting and preliminary design of a large-scale chemical plant
- Using client information to produce a pre-Front End Engineering Design (FEED) for a first-in-world recycling plant
- Visiting a client site to trouble-shoot and improve their existing process
- Assessing the commercial viability of a new process
Device Technology (Electronics Business Unit)
The Device Technology team brings together scientists from a range of technical disciplines. We utilise technical know-how, experimental methodology and creative problem solving to assist companies with the commercialisation of innovative new products. The team are seeking an enthusiastic placement student with an inquisitive mind and attention for detail.
A placement student who joins the Device Technology team will gain first-hand experience of developing new devices such as sensors, medical devices and wearables. This will involve applying scientific knowledge, using functional printing and coating techniques, and analytical equipment to characterise device performance. The work will range from developing early stage, novel technologies and prototypes to upscaled processes for pre-manufacturing readiness. This means solving new and complex problems and constantly finding creative ways of working.
As part of a multidisciplinary team they will support colleagues with the delivery of ongoing research programmes and commercial project work. Through a wide diversity of projects, they will gain experience across a wide range of industry applications including energy, healthcare, and smart devices, to name a few.
Each position is fixed term for 12 months from July 2022, working 37 hours per week (Monday — Friday).
The person we are seeking
The ideal candidate will be studying towards a Degree in Chemistry/Physics/Materials Science or a related field and will have demonstrated, laboratory experience in using common laboratory equipment. Training would be provided in the relevant process and/or measurement equipment required to deliver the assigned project. Applicants must be able to effectively use Microsoft packages such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint. The ideal candidates will be committed to, and actively seek opportunities to develop themselves within these new and exciting roles!
These positions would suit students whose course includes a sandwich year in industry, or those able to take a placement opportunity in industry between academic years.
Each position is fixed term for 12 months from July 2022, working 37 hours per week (Monday — Friday).
What does CPI offer you?
At CPI, we offer a wide range of benefits to our employees, this includes:
- Up to 33 days holiday, including bank holidays – Plus a holiday purchasing scheme
- Generous pension scheme
- Life assurance and accident insurance schemes
- Flexible working
- Learning and Development Opportunities
- Free parking
Find out more about our culture and benefits.
The closing date is Sunday 3 October. Shortlisting will take place during October.
Interviews are expected to be held w/c 8 and/or w/c 15 November.
If you wish to apply for a position, please submit your Cover Letter and CV through this careers page, ensuring to make it clear which team you wish to apply for on your Cover Letter.
CPI is an organisation based in the UK. Commencement of employment is conditional to demonstrating right to work in the UK, sponsorship may be available.