Experience Reports

Experiences reports our scholarship holders:

Tatiana Zueva, PHD candidate at CBI:
„This workshop was about engine combustion research and alternative mobility concepts with focus on fuel sprays and experimental methodology for transient inert and reactive flows. This fits perfectly to my PhD topic, which is “Investigation of the heated hydrocarbons spray propagation under cross flow conditions”. Taking part in the workshop gave me great opportunity to increase my knowledge in the field of my scientific research. Moreover, I got to know other researchers who are working in the same area and had a chance to discuss my topic with them. Thus, I got many valuable comments, advices and opinions about my research. So, the participation in the conference was fruitful for me. I am thankful to the Women’s representative of the Faculty of Engineering at FAU for financial support.

The research visit was a highly valuable experience and an important step on my way of becoming a successful woman in science. I would like to thank the women`s representatives for the international visiting scholarship.“

Dr.-Ing. Selda Özkan, Post-Doc at WW
“From mid-January to early February 2019, I worked as a visiting researcher in Prof. Xiaorong Zhou`s group at the School of Materials/University of Manchester (https://www.research.manchester.ac.uk/portal/xiaorong.zhou.html).

In 2013, I joined the group of Prof. Patrik Schmuki at the University of Erlangen-Nürnberg as a doctoral candidate. I received my Ph.D. degree in 2017 and since then I am a postdoctoral researcher in his group. Currently, I conduct research on the synthesis of anodic TiO2 nanostructures and functionalization of the nanostructured layers for electrochemical, photoelectrochemical and photocatalytic energy conversion. My motivation for the research stay was to gain insight into a different research environment while learning new methods in electrochemistry. The corrosion science and engineering group at the University of Manchester accommodates well-known, respected scientists in the field of anodic oxidation. This opportunity has not only broadened my scientific perspective and introduced me to other aspects of this research field, but is also an important experience that will help me achieve my career goals as a scientist.

In the last decade, Prof. Schmuki`s group collaborated with the corrosion group at the University of Manchester on various projects in the field of nanostructured oxide layer formation by electrochemical anodization. During my research stay, I focused particularly on plasma electrolytic oxidation (PEO) of titanium and the characterization of the oxide layers. PEO method leads to the formation of crystalline porous oxide layers different from the conventional anodization technique. Moreover, during the anodization process, ionic species incorporate into the oxide layer and significantly modifies the physical, chemical and electrical properties. The as-formed crystalline porous layers can find wider application in the fields of electrochemical, photoelectrochemical and photocatalytic energy conversion. In this work, I perform research on the functionalization of PEO layers for photocatalytic hydrogen generation.“

„From January to March 2021, I worked as a visiting researcher in Prof. Higgins group in Chemical Engineering Department at McMaster University in Canada. https://www.higginslab.com/
In 2015, I joined the Institute for Surface Science and Corrosion (LKO), Department of Materials Science at the University of Erlangen-Nürnberg as a doctoral candidate. I received my Ph.D. degree in 2020 and since then I am a postdoctoral researcher. Currently, I am conducting research on synthesis of nanostructured anodic oxides, defect engineering of the nanostructured layers and single atom catalysis for electrochemical, photoelectrochemical and photocatalytic H2 generation and CO2 reduction. My motivation for the research stay was to learn new techniques in electrocatalysis and gain insight into a different research environment. I selected Higgins group for my research stay, mainly due to similar research interests with the focus on “Nanomaterial Catalysts for Sustainable Energy Technologies”. This opportunity not only introduced me to other aspects of this research field, but also enabled me to expand my network which I believe is very beneficial for my future academic career.
During my research stay, I focused particularly on TiO2 nanotubes, intrinsically copper decorated TiO2 nanotubes, and defect engineered TiO2 nanotubes for electrochemical CO2 reduction. The idea behind electrochemical CO2 reduction is to convert harmful CO2 into value-added chemical compounds such as methanol, methane, or carbon monoxide. Using modified 1D TiO2 nanostructures, provides a promising electrode for electrocatalytic reactions which can find wider application in the fields of electrochemical and photoelectrochemical energy conversion.
The research visit had indeed an important role in helping me getting closer to my academic goals and was very much a valuable experience. I would like to thank the women`s representatives for the international visiting scholarship.”

“The writing retreat was aimed at providing the tools for academic writing. This included how to plan writing sessions and organise writings using different methods such as visualisations. We were taught how to give and receive good and helpful feedback. I learnt how to structure my time and writing such that my writing sessions were focused and efficient even if there were longer breaks between them. I highly recommend Dzifa Vode as a writing coach.”