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Materials chemistry is a vibrant area of research with many industrial applications.

Organosilicon research focuses on the fundamental chemistry of organosilicon compounds including: (i) new materials and coatings based on silsesquioxanes, (ii) biomimetic organosilicon chemistry, (iii) novel organosilicon compounds based on silsesquioxane cages, (iv) the development of novel HPLC phases and (v) the mechanism of substitution at silicon.

Research in catalysis focuses on the synthesis and characterisation of bimetallic catalysts for fuel cells and catalytic converters. There is also interest in characterising porous materials and surfaces.

Research in polymer processing and structure development research concentrates on understanding and predicting the effects of molecular variables during polymer processing. Relating this closely to their molecular architecture and properties allows the development of improved materials in the future. Molecular imprinted polymers (MIPs) have potential for the detection of biomarkers, toxins, explosives and pharmaceuticals. Research into MIPs also looks at their physical properties of this polymer class.  

Research in supramolecular chemistry focuses on luminescent sensors and probes and photoactive molecular devices. Experimental work is supported and complemented by computer modelling of solid inorganic materials including oxides with interesting electronic and magnetic properties.

Qualifications available:

PhD or MPhil


For detailed information on current fees visit Fees and funding.

Entry requirements:

Minimum 2:1 (or equivalent)

Current / recent research projects

  • Production of Novel HPLC phases (Professor Peter Taylor)
  • Characterisation of a novel silsesquioxane fabrication (Professor Peter Taylor)
  • Biocatalysis at silicon (Professor Peter Taylor)
  • Development and Analysis of Recognition Polymers (Dr Nicholas Turner)
  • MIPS for clean up of biological samples (Dr Nicholas Turner)
  • Lanthanide Complexes as Incorporated Luminescent Detectors (Dr James Bruce)
  • Understanding and improving reactivity of low platinum group metal three-way catalysts. (Dr Eleanor Crabb)

Potential supervisors

Further information

If you have an enquiry specific to this research area please contact:

Astrid Peterkin
+44 (0)1908 659845

For general enquiries please contact the Research Degrees Team via the link under ‘Your questions’ on the right of the page.