Postgraduate research opportunities Discovery and Applications of Novel Solid-State Structures: Water Bridge Salt Forms


Key facts

  • Opens: Monday 8 March 2021
  • Deadline: Wednesday 30 June 2021
  • Number of places: 1
  • Duration: 42 Months
  • Funding: Home fee, Stipend


The project aims to improve our ability to identify and exploit crystalline hydrated salt forms that are in a unique solid-state arrangement known as a “water bridge” and be part of a dynamic research team working closely with industry partners and gain experience of experimental and modelling techniques.
Back to opportunity


2:1 Honour degree or overseas equivalent

(background in chemistry, physics, pharmaceutical science, material science, chemical engineering, mechanical engineering, or similar) and funding eligibility (candidates eligible for home fees are UK or Irish nationals, applicants with a settled or pre-settled status in the UK under the EU Settlement Scheme, and applicants with indefinite leave to remain in the UK. We also welcome applications from EU or international candidates who can provide evidence of their ability to fund the fee difference)

THE Awards 2019: UK University of the Year Winner
Back to opportunity

Project Details

The project aims to improve our ability to identify and exploit crystalline hydrated salt forms that are in a unique solid-state arrangement known as a “water bridge”.  Currently, CMAC Tier 1 partners have identified interest in a small number of salt forms that despite being expected to disproportionate in tablet formulations showed unexpected solid-state and solution stability.  A recent publication by researchers at Purdue and Pfizer highlighted a case study on two solid-state forms of Miconazole mesylate (anhydrous and hydrate) where the salt-hydrate had this same unique “water bridge” arrangement.   The research showed that the hydrate form also had resistance to disproportionation.  However, sustained solubility in the pH solubility curve was not discussed.  This research will seek to build fundamental understanding of salt “water bridge” propensity, creation, stability, and physical property relationships. The project will combine 3 research elements to (1) explore the molecular features that favor water bridge formation in molecular salts, (2) the factors that affect their formation from solution crystallization and (3) the solubility, dissolution and stability of selected water bridge hydrate structures. Further details on the proposed methodology are provided in the attached workplan paragraphs below. The aim is to develop insights that can inform the targeted selection of water bridge hydrates during salt selection informed by the factors that influence their formation, stability and performance.

This is an exciting opportunity to join a dynamic research team based at the university of Strathclyde and working closely with industry partners, gain experience of a range of experimental and modelling techniques as part of your research.

Back to opportunity

Funding details

This project is fully funded Strathclyde Excellence Award (SEA)

Back to opportunity


Professor Alastair Florence

Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences

View profile
Back to course

Contact us

Any enquiries regarding the project can be sent to