Senior Chemist (Biomaterials)

London, England, United Kingdom
4 days ago
Full time role


Modern Synthesis

London, England, United Kingdom

Modern Synthesis is a London based biomaterial company connecting the dots between biology, material science and design to craft the ...

View Company Profile

Job Description

APPLICATIONS CLOSE: 23rd June 2023 4pm


Modern Synthesis is a venture-backed start-up crafting the next generation of biomaterials by connecting the dots between biology, material science and design. We’re on a mission to create sustainable materials which reduce the fashion industry’s dependence on petrochemicals - without sacrificing performance or creativity. Our first material, which is grown by bacteria, is fully biodegradable and astonishingly strong. You can read more about it on our website.

We believe that big magic happens when disparate disciplines, perspectives and ideas collide. As a team of biologists, chemists, designers, engineers, business experts, robots and microbes, we get to witness this magic on a daily basis.

We hire people, not roles, so we can be flexible on scope. We strongly encourage you to apply if you think you’re qualified for a portion of this role. You should demonstrate a proven ability to take on new skills and challenges.


We’re looking for a Senior Chemist to develop and test new biomaterial product formulations, production processes and lead on innovative grant projects. You’ll be supporting cutting edge R&D, industry and academic collaborations to develop the future of biomaterial technologies. You’ll work with the design team to produce new materials for projects with global brands.


Product and Formulation Research
  • Research, develop and test novel biopolymer formulations for composite biomaterials
  • Demonstrate performance properties towards textile applications with unique smart/responsive properties
  • Utilise DoE approaches to optimise research efforts
  • Perform physical and chemical material characterization with both internal equipment and external testing organisations
  • Support customer and partner projects to develop novel high performance materials to relevant requirements
  • Record, analyse, interpret and present experimental data to the team and advisors
  • Assist with IP development and filing of patents

Process Development
  • Lead development and optimisation of laboratory scale biomaterial production processes
  • Test and improve finishing processes and chemistries to enhance material performance
  • Draft risk assessments and SOPs. Identify potential hazards and implement controls to maintain a safe working environment

  • Collaborate closely with the engineering team to produce samples and develop scalable processes
  • Build relationships and collaborate with our advisory board. The board is made up of world leading experts from industry and academia
  • Work collaboratively with production partners and suppliers
  • Support development of agreements and joint ventures with collaborators
  • Line management of a small team


  • Undergraduate or postgraduate degree in Chemistry, Materials Science, Engineering or similar
  • Experience working with laboratory scale material production and testing processes. These could include film casting, coatings or composite manufacturing
  • Self-motivated with a learning and growth mindset
  • Effective communication skills, both written and verbal. Ability to concisely present technical information to a wide range of stakeholders.
  • Experience or willingness to collaborate with an interdisciplinary team
  • Experience with leading and managing a team, specifically managing at least 1-2 direct reports
  • Comfortable with rapid innovation cycles and constant growth in a fast-paced environment. Proactive and flexible to take on new tasks and challenges
  • Passion for sustainability and impact


These are not required for the role
  • PhD in Chemistry or Materials Science
  • Production and characterisation of biomaterials/biopolymers - particularly bacterial cellulose
  • Knowledge of cellulose chemistries
  • Knowledge of textile processing, chemistries and finishing
  • Experience writing grant and/or patent applications

  • Company Pension Scheme
  • Private Health Insurance, including vision and stipends
  • Enhance Parental Leave Policy
  • Flexible working arrangements
  • Cycle-to-work Scheme
  • Headspace Subscription
  • Dog-friendly office in Balham
  • New biomaterials lab and workshop
  • Access to state-of-the-art testing and analytical facilities
  • Individual Training budget for Professional Development


Co-Culture - We Co-Culture Change
Co-Culture reflects our commitment to cross-pollination internally and externally, our ability to lean on one another, and our role as a catalyst in both business and culture.

Growth - We Put Growth on a Pedestal
Growth speaks to our inspiration and creative use of biology, our bias towards impact and scale, and our dedication to empowering industry to ‘grow up’ from a harmful past.

By Design - We Do It All By Design
By Design articulates the intentionality, empathy and creativity built into every aspect of our work. It also denotes the importance of accountability and our adherence to core design thinking principles.


Round 0. Apply online and submit link(s) to your portfolio of work

Round 1. 30 minute exploratory phone interview where we’ll dive into your work history and motivations for applying to Modern Synthesis

Round 2. 1 hour skills interview where we’ll explore the skills and knowledge you’ll bring to this role. Successful candidates will be asked to prepare a presentation for the final Round 3.

Round 3. 1 hour panel interview and presentation with key members of the team on-site in our Balham office.

Modern Synthesis

London, England, United Kingdom

Modern Synthesis is a London based biomaterial company connecting the dots between biology, material science and design to craft the ...

View Company Profile