HDR Scholarship - Waste glasses - A sustainable source of battery materials

Applications now open. A PhD scholarship is available to initiate and conduct research on the topic 'Waste glasses - A sustainable source of battery materials'.

Project Supervisor


Geelong Technology Precinct (GTP), Waurn Ponds Campus

Research topic

This project is very well aligned with IFM’s core research themes and strategy which focuses research on materials science to tackle complex problems in the areas of energy, health, environment, and manufacturing. This project will convert recovered waste glasses into high value battery materials which supports IFM’s circular economy outcomes of “Re-designing materials for a circular economy, imparting materials with extraordinary functionality”. This project will continue the efforts developing new technologies with the aim of repurposing of valuable component of silicon-silica (Si-SiOx) recovered from waste glasses to capture their highest economical value in a circular way.

The successful outcomes from this project will be of great interest to the glass industry and energy sector. This project will attract funding from various agencies such as Sustainability Victoria (SV), Energy Innovation Fund (Government of Victoria), ARC LP, and industries. Once initial validation of the proposed project has been undertaken, funding will be sought from industry partners. We have identified prospective industry partners (Veolia Group- Australia & New Zealand, O-I Australia, and PPK Group Ltd., Australia). Veolia Group and O-I Australia are running business in waste glass recycling whereas PPK Group Ltd., Australia is operating business in battery materials.

Project aim

Among various wastes, glass wastes are considered as solid wastes on the environment. Glass, which can take approximately one million years for a glass bottle to break down within a traditional landfill, this material can be recycled indefinitely. As silica (SiO2) is the main ingredient for glass production, therefore the rest of the waste glasses can be reduced to silicon-silica (Si-SiOx) for battery applications. This project aims to take a pioneering initiative to recover silica (SiO2) from waste glasses and repurpose them as high value battery materials through the development of advanced repurpose processes. The processes will effectively remove impurities from recovered SiO2, reduce to Si-SiOx and subsequent formation of nano Si-SiOx/graphite, creating new sources of sustainable energy materials.  Until now, no other research/industry work is being conducted around the world to recover SiO2 from waste glasses and convert them to nano size Si-SiOx and subsequent production of Si-SiOx/graphite to increase energy density of the current lithium-ion batteries. The partial reduction of SiO2 to nano Si-SiOx is a brand-new concept and the obtained nano size Si-SiOx/graphite will be used as novel battery material.

Significance and Potential Impact: This project will have a huge impact on three areas: environment, economic and social.  This project could generate new IPs in new materials recycling technology and consequently create industrial opportunities, as well as new jobs. This project will promote circular economic growth in the critical sector of energy and recycling industry.

Important dates

Applications close 5pm, Wednesday 31 August 2022


This scholarship is available over 3 years.

  • Stipend of $28,900 per annum tax exempt (2022 rate)
  • Relocation allowance of $500-1500 (for single to family) for students moving from interstate
  • International students only:  Tuition fees offset for the duration of 4 years. Single Overseas Student Health Cover policy for the duration of the student visa.

Eligibility criteria

To be eligible you must:

  • be either a domestic or international candidate. Domestic includes candidates with Australian Citizenship, Australian Permanent Residency or New Zealand Citizenship.
  • meet Deakin's PhD entry requirements
  • be enrolling full time and hold an honours degree (first class) or an equivalent standard master's degree with a substantial research component.

Please refer to the research degree entry pathways page for further information.

Additional desirable criteria include:

  • Candidates with research publications in the relevant field will be given priority

How to apply

Please apply using the Find a Research Supervisor tool


Contact us

For more information about this scholarship, please contact Dr Md Mokhlesur Rahman or Dr Srikanth Mateti

Dr Md Mokhlesur Rahman
Email Dr Md Mokhlesur Rahman
+61 431270219

Dr Srikanth Mateti
Email Dr Srikanth Mateti
+61 403308020