PhD position in Reims

A PhD position (standard French grant) devoted to the study of carbon dioxide diffusion in sparkling wines, and especially champagnes, by classical molecular dynamics simulations might open on October 2018 under the supervision of Prof. Gérard Liger-Belair and myself at the Groupe de Spectrométrie Moléculaire et Atmosphérique (GSMA) in Reims, France.

Our team is mainly interested in the physical properties behind bubble dynamics in beverages supersaturated with dissolved carbon dioxide (eg, champagnes, beers, fizzy waters or sodas) from their formation by heterogeneous nucleation in cavities (eg, cellulose fibers) [1] to their rise and their final burst at the free surface of the liquids, this burst releasing organoleptic compounds that can be identified by mass spectrometric measurements [2,3]. In particular,
CO2 diffusion is a major physical process responsible for the formation and the growth of the bubbles and the present project aims to better understand the influence of the different molecular components of champagne wines (ie, sugars, glycerol, etc.) on the values of CO2 diffusion coefficients in the bulk and through cavity walls, then supplementing earlier studies where brut champagnes were modeled as ternary mixtures of water, ethanol, and carbon dioxide [4,5].

Interested candidates must have a master degree in chemistry, physical chemistry, or physics with strong interest for molecular simulations and related topics. Programming skills (eg, fortran 90 or C) are not mandatory but would be appreciated. Due to academic rules, the selected candidate is expected to be interviewed by a committee from our university (date to be defined, around June). Candidates are therefore encouraged to contact me or Prof. Gérard Liger-Belair as soon as possible for getting details on the project and administrative procedure. Candidates should also send a resume describing their achievements and, when available, an official document listing the marks obtained at the master level.

Contacts:
– Prof. Gérard Liger-Belair, gerard.liger-belair@univ-reims.fr
– Dr David A. Bonhommeau, david.bonhommeau@univ-reims.fr

[1] Recent advances in the science of champagne bubbles, G. Liger-Belair, G. Polidori, and P.
Jeandet, Chem. Soc. Rev. 37, 2490-2511 (2008).
[2] Unraveling different chemical fingerprints between a champagne wine and its aerosols, Gérard Liger-Belair, Clara Cilindre, Régis D. Gougeon, et al., PNAS 106, 16545-16549 (2009).
[3] Chemical messages in 170-year-old champagne bottles from the Baltic Sea: Revealing tastes from the past, P. Jeandet, S. S. Heinzmann, C. Roullier-Gall et al., PNAS 112, 5893-
5898 (2015).
[4] CO2 Diffusion in Champagne Wines: A Molecular Dynamics Study, A. Perret, D. A.
Bonhommeau, G. Liger-Belair, et al., J. Phys. Chem. B 118, 1839-1847 (2014).
[5] Unveiling the Interplay Between Diffusing CO2 and Ethanol Molecules in Champagne Wines by Classical Molecular Dynamics and 13C NMR Spectroscopy, D.A. Bonhommeau, A. Perret, J.-M. Nuzillard, et al., J. Phys. Chem. Lett. 5, 4232-4237 (2014).

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