Solid-state chemistry is what fundamentally underpins the research group. Our focus is on materials chemistry which is the synthesis and study of the structure (both crystallographic and electronic) and functional properties of solid phase materials. The group mainly focuses on oxide materials – as they are an incredibly broad class of materials that encompass superconductivity to insulating properties, as well as combining transparency and conductivity and catalytic functions to name but a few. Recently we have been adopting machine learning approaches to design, predict, synthesise and characterise new (previously undiscovered) oxide materials.
Our solid state chemistry laboratory is capable of synthesising a wide range of oxide materials using traditional techniques (shake and bake) through to microwave chemistry – we recently acquired an Anton Paar Monowave400 system. We also use solution-based approaches (sol-gel) to make complex oxides deposited using spin- and dip-coating methods. We currently have four high temperature furnaces (3 tube furnaces and 1 muffle furnace) – all capable of reaching 1450oC and operating in a range of atmospheres.
Understanding materials (IrO2)
Solution-based epitaxy (Bi2Ti2O7)
Machine learning approaches