Non-invasive samplers for characterising chemical exposure

Project opportunity

This Earmarked Scholarship project is aligned with a recently awarded Category 1 research grant. It offers you the opportunity to work with leading researchers and contribute to large projects of national significance.

We are continually exposed to a complex mixture of chemical pollutants through several pathways. Our exposures are highly specific, with different patterns of exposure from the different aspects of our lives. Increasing complexity in the chemicals being used and produced makes characterising this exposure increasingly challenging. To address this challenge there is a need for improved and robust biomonitoring methods to understand the complete picture of our exposures which will facilitate effective mitigation strategies against exposure to chemicals of high concern.  

This project will develop and apply polydimethylsiloxane (silicone) as a non-invasive human biomonitoring device to advancing understanding on key and unknown chemical exposures to the Australian population. Using silicone wristbands and donated silicone prostheses (breast implants) chemical exposures in a range of scenarios will be quantified through both target and non-target chemical analysis using chromatographic techniques coupled to mass spectrometry (GC/LC-MS). The successful applicant will have access to a range of archived samplers specific to various exposure scenarios as well as the advanced analytical instrumentation necessary to successfully complete the project.

Scholarship value

As a scholarship recipient, you'll receive: 

  • living stipend of $32,192 per annum tax free (2023 rate), indexed annually
  • tuition fees covered
  • single Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC)


Professor Kevin Thomas

Queensland Alliance for Environmental Health Sciences


Preferred educational background

Your application will be assessed on a competitive basis.

We take into account your

  • previous academic record
  • publication record
  • honours and awards
  • employment history.

A working knowledge of environmental analytical chemistry would be of benefit to someone working on this project.

The applicant will demonstrate academic achievement in the field(s) of environmental sciences or a related analytical field and the potential for scholastic success.

A background or knowledge of laboratory based research, including sample extraction and analysis using mass spectrometry is highly desirable.

Latest commencement date

If you are the successful candidate, you must commence by Research Quarter 3, 2025. You should apply at least 3 months prior to the research quarter commencement date.

If you are an international applicant, you may need to apply much earlier for visa requirements.

How to apply

You apply for this project as part of your PhD program application.

View application process