Bio-Inspired Materials Chemistry

My group carries out research in the area of bio-inspired materials chemistry, taking Nature as the inspiration for developing novel strategies for the production of advanced materials. Biological structures are characterised by many unique features optimised for their function, including remarkable, complex morphologies, hierarchical organisation over many length scales and responsiveness to their environment. Importantly, all of this is achieved through strategies which operate under mild reaction conditions. The research in my group focuses on one class of biological materials - biominerals - which include structures such as bones, teeth and seashells. Through examining the structures of these biogenic minerals and the mechanisms by which biomineralization occurs, we aim to develop new, low-temperature synthetic routes to a range of materials, and indeed to produce materials with novel structures.

Applications

Crystallization is a hugely important subject which lies at the heart of a vast array of natural phenomena and technological processes, including weathering and frost heave, scaling phenomena, biomineralization, the formation of ice in the atmosphere and applications such as the fabrication of nano-materials, mineral-based biomaterials, pharmaceuticals, food-stuffs and personal care products. Developing ways of controlling crystallization - be it the formation of new materials or indeed the prevention of unwanted crystallization events such as the formation of kidney stones - is thus highly important to fundamental research and technology across many disciplines.

PhD and postdoc positions available!

We currently have funded PhD and postdoc positions available from September 2018. We are looking for people with experience in crystallisation and/ or microfluidics, so if you are interested in joining our vibrant group, please get in touch with Fiona.

School of Chemistry, University of Leeds, Woodhouse Lane, Leeds, LS2 9JT