Materials Scientist

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Materials Scientist

Materials Scientists work in a wide variety of business environments including the manufacturing, aerospace, engineering, renewable energy, information technology, pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. Materials Scientists are involved in the measurement and analysis of a particular material's structure and properties, a process known as materials characterisation. Scientific materials characterisation techniques are constantly evolving thanks to technologies such as electron microscopes and mass spectrometers which enable ever more detailed analysis of the structure and properties of materials down to a molecular level. The results of materials characterization work carried out by Materials Scientists will be used to alter and improve materials for specific purposes or to develop new materials.  Within the biomedical industry, for example, new materials for implants and other medical devices which do not have a negative impact on human cell tissues are being developed by Materials Scientists.

Within the Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology industries Materials Scientists will typically be engaged in characterising API and drug products. A Materials Charaterisation Scientist will be primarily lab based utilising a suite of physical and chemical materials characterisation techniques, which would include light microscopy, particle size analysis, powder flow, spectroscopy and thermal techniques.   Accurate recording and reporting of large sets of data resulting from the Materials Scientist’s characterization work is always required.

Qualifications and Experience Required to become a Materials Scientist

•    Science based degree

•    Experience with performing, designing and conducting laboratory experiments either in industry or at university

•    Desire to undertake hands-on laboratory work and work and the pharmaceutical industry in general.

•    Familiarity with physical property materials characterization techniques e.g. laser diffraction particle size, specific surface area

•    Use and interpretation of thermal methods including differential scanning calorimetry and thermal gravimetric analysis

•    Application of materials characterisation assessment methods to predict product performance

•    Ability to interpret results and use this to suggest further materials characterisation where applicable.

•    Time management skills, including the ability to plan, prioritise and organise own work

•    Written communication skills (technical)

•    Ability to work with others collaboratively in a team setting

•    Enthusiastic, positive, proactive, flexible attitude and able to take the initiative