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Department of Chemistry

News Archive

New Head of Department

The Department is delighted to welcome Professor Mark Wilson as Head of Department for the next three years. Mark graduated with a chemistry degree from Sheffield University, held a SERC research fellowship in Bristol then a lectureship in physics at Lancaster. He joined Durham Chemistry as a lecturer in 1995. He was promoted to Senior Lecturer in 2001, Reader in 2006 and Chair in 2009. Mark has held a number of leadership roles including as Head of Physical Chemistry in Durham, teaching coordinator for the SOFI soft matter doctoral training centre and chair of the British Liquid Crystal Society. Durham students voted Mark “Science Lecturer of the Year” in 2013.

(1 Aug 2014) » More about New Head of Department


A Hong Kong Engagement

Professor David Parker FRS, of the Department of Chemistry at Durham University and a former pupil at Durham Johnston School, is to take up the Kennedy Wong Visiting Professorship at Hong Kong Baptist University from January 1 2019. He is distinguished for his innovative and far-reaching work on the design, synthesis and application of tailored molecules, metal complexes and conjugates that are used in diagnostics, imaging and therapy.

(18 Sep 2018) » More about A Hong Kong Engagement


Large European Grant awarded to Basile Curchod

Congratulations to Dr Basile Curchod on the award of a large grant from the European Research Council (ERC). The project SINDAM (Sunlight-Induced Nonadiabatic Dynamics of Atmospheric Molecules) will focus on the role played by sunlight on the chemical composition of our atmosphere. Using theoretical chemistry, the SINDAM team will investigate how the chemistry of volatile organic compounds (molecules contributing substantially to both global warming and air pollution) is altered when they absorb light from the sun. This ERC project will start in January 2019 and allow for the recruitment of two postgraduate students as well as two postdoctoral research associates.

(14 Aug 2018)


Five-year fellowship for Russell Taylor

Many congratulations to Dr Russell Taylor, Lecturer in Synthetic Inorganic Chemistry, who has been awarded a prestigious Manufacturing Fellowship by the EPSRC (Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council). This five-year, £900,000 award will support research into the development of new manufacturing processes that directly convert natural gas to value-added commodity chemicals. The project is supported by project partners, Johnson Matthey and the Centre for Process Innovation (CPI) who will provide guidance on aspects of technical and commercial application and process development.

(3 May 2018)


Judith Howard awarded Chancellor’s Medal

Congratulations to Professor Judith Howard CBE FRS on the award of Chancellor’s Medal. The prestigious Chancellor's Medal is given to an academic staff member with a long and distinguished employment history at Durham University, who has made outstanding contributions to research and who continues to enhance the University's reputation nationally and internationally post-retirement.

 

Judith joined Durham Chemistry as a Professor of Crystallography (the first female full professor) in 1991 and became the first (and only) female head of a five-star chemistry department nationally. Judith has built instruments that allow scientists to apply techniques to prove theories experimentally and advance the field of X-ray crystallography. She developed low temperature X-ray  and neutron diffraction methods to explore  electron density distributions, chemical bonding descriptors  and magnetic properties in molecules more precisely.

Judith is the chairman of OlexSys – a successful university spin-off (2010) - which provides the popular Olex2 software for solution and refinement of crystallographic data. Her publication record is remarkable with over 1500 articles and an h-index of 78.

(30 Apr 2018)


Durham Chemistry in University Research Video

The University has just published a video covering some of the research highlights at Durham: 

Durham Chemistry is featured in the video by our staff members: Prof Jas Pal Badyal and Dr Robert Pal.

Durham University Research

(23 Mar 2018) » More about Durham Chemistry in University Research Video


Durham Chemistry welcomes two Royal Society Newton International Fellows

Durham Chemistry is delighted to welcome two new research staff members who have been awarded prestigious Royal Society Newton International Fellowships.

 

(23 Mar 2018) » More about Durham Chemistry welcomes two Royal Society Newton International Fellows


Successful International Award for Durham Chemistry

Congratulations to Dr Paul McGonigal and Dr Alyssa-Jennifer Avestro of this department on their successful bid in collaboration with Prof Andy Monkman (Physics), and Dr Chris Groves (Engineering) for a Rutherford Strategic Partnership Grant programme that will bring four early career scientists to Durham University from India, Malaysia, and Mexico as Rutherford Strategic Fellows (RSFs). During the 2018–2019 programme, the four RSFs will be hosted by the Durham Energy Institute (DEI) in the area of Organic Energy Materials.

Further details of this international award can be found at the DEI website

https://www.dur.ac.uk/dei/news/?itemno=33713

 

(27 Feb 2018)


SCI Process Chemistry Award for Professor Graham Sandford

Congratulations to Professor Graham Sandford and the Durham Fluorine Group on receiving the 2018 SCI Process Chemistry Award sponsored by GlaxoSmithKline-AstraZeneca-Syngenta-Pfizer for research on selective direct fluorination and continuous flow fluorination technology development. The highly competitive award is intended to recognise research into industrially-relevant areas of synthetic organic chemistry in order to raise awareness of the challenges faced by synthetic chemists in the pharmaceutical and agrochemical industries. A panel composed of eight process chemists from AstraZeneca, GSK, Pfizer and Syngenta selected the winner and, as part of the prize, Professor Sandford will present an award lecture at the 2018 SCI Process Chemistry Conference in Cambridge.

(23 Jan 2018) » More about SCI Process Chemistry Award for Professor Graham Sandford


Ultrafast dynamics on the electron-attachment process

Prof Jan Verlet, Dr Joshua Rogers and Cate Anstöter have recently published their novel research in the prestigious journal, Nature Chemistry. They studied the reaction of an electron with a neutral molecule to make an anion. While this may seem like something that should be completely understood by now, it actually is not. One of the main reasons for this is that the process occurs on a very short time scale and it is therefore difficult to study experimentally. Jan's group has developed a method to track the reaction in real-time and to study the reaction of a very low-energy electron with hexafluorobenzene. 

(8 Jan 2018) » More about Ultrafast dynamics on the electron-attachment process


Abby Haworth awarded RSC poster prize

Many congratulations to Abby Haworth on her poster prize at the RSC Solid State Chemistry Group Christmas Meeting in Reading. This prize was awarded by the Journal of Materials Chemistry A. Abby is currently doing a PhD with Dr Karen Johnston in the area of multinuclear solid state NMR. 

(28 Dec 2017)


Origin of protein formation

One of the biggest unanswered questions in science is how life first originated. Dr Valentina Erastova and Dr Matteo Degiacomi from our department, in collaboration with Earth Sciences departments in Durham and Oxford Universities, published an article in Nature Communications shedding light on a possible mechanism leading to the spontaneous formation of proteins, one of life’s fundamental building blocks.

(15 Dec 2017) » More about Origin of protein formation


Adams Poster Prizewinners 2017

Congratulations to Hannah Broderick (1st prize), Hannah Blandon (2nd) and Hannah Jones (3rd) in winning the D.B. Adams Poster prizes. These awards, inaugurated in 2014, are made annually in memory of Dr David Brinley Adams (Durham: BSc, 1967 – 1970, PhD, 1970 – 1973, Senior Demonstrator, 1973 – 1975) in recognition of academic excellence in the MChem poster competition.

(4 Dec 2017)


International Award for Jas Pal Badyal

Congratulations to Professor Jas Pal Badyal FRS on the award of the Chemical Research Society of India (CRSI) International Medal 2018 - the first UK-born scientist to receive this honour. This is in recognition for his research group's pioneering work at Durham University on developing high selectivity plasmachemical reaction pathways, and scalable functional nanocoatings for technological and societal applications. Jas Pal will be awarded the medal next year at the 22nd National Conference of the Chemical Research Society of India.

(3 Dec 2017) » More about International Award for Jas Pal Badyal


Jack Pike wins a poster prize

Jack Pike, PhD student in the Walton group, won a poster prize at the 2017 RSC Coordination and Organometallic Discussion Group meeting at Lancaster University. Jack’s poster “Ruthenium-Mediated Nucleophilic Trifluoromethylation of Arenes” was awarded the prize from a field of more than 30 posters. Presenting the award was Dr Nick Fletcher of Lancaster University.

(3 Dec 2017) » More about Jack Pike wins a poster prize


Sensing the difference between the elements

About a half of the reactions of life are catalysed by metals and a paper out today in Nature Communications​ from the Robinson lab at Durham University discovers how cells discern one metal from another. Metal sensing helps metalloproteins to bind the right metals. Implications and applications of understanding and manipulating protein metalation are supported by an Industry-Academia network led from the Universities of Durham and Kent in the UK (Metals in Biology BBSRC NIBB, award BB/L013711/1).

(1 Dec 2017) » More about Sensing the difference between the elements


Calling all former SALTERS Prizewinners, Award winners, Fellows or Scholars!

In 2018 the Salters’ Institute will be celebrating its Centenary. Since it was founded in 1918 the Salters’ Institute has been at the forefront of supporting chemistry education both in the UK and overseas. The Centenary gives the Institute a focus to celebrate the Institute’s history and the impact of its current activities; to redefine its relationship with the chemical industry; and to develop new initiatives, one of which is a network for Salters’ Institute Alumni.

To begin this network the Institute is contacting its previous Award winners to find out where their careers have taken them since winning an Award, and to get involved in the Institute’s Alumni events.

So far an event is planned at The Royal Society of Edinburgh on Thursday 30 November 2017. As part of the Centenary year plans are underway for an event at Salters’ Hall in April 2018 (date TBC).

Please contact: publicity@salters.co.uk for more information.

(19 Oct 2017)


Yousilliya Bunga awarded Electrochem poster prize

Congratulations to final year PhD student Yousilliya Bunga for winning a first poster prize at Electrochem 2017 held in Birmingham University. The prize was awarded by SCI (Society for Chemical Industry) for her poster, entitled ‘Interactions of thiolated gold nanoparticles with lipid membranes’, based on her PhD work with Dr Ritu Kataky. Her research is on the effects of size, charge and chemical modifications of metallic nanoparticles on their interactions with lipid membranes. The implications of the work, was judged by SCI, to have widespread applications in toxicology, anti-bacterial and drug delivery applications.

(14 Sep 2017)


Drilling through Cell Membranes

Dr Robert Pal collaborated with US researchers on the successful opening of cell membranes by using light to activate molecular nanomachines. Cells were killed rapidly due to these activated motors puncturing their membranes by drilling through. Such machines show great promise in destroying cancer cells. This study is published in the highly respected journal Nature.

(8 Sep 2017) » More about Drilling through Cell Membranes


Nicole Richardson awarded poster prize

Congratulations to recent Durham Chemistry graduate Nicole Richardson, who won the Learning Science poster prize 2017 at the recent Variety in Chemical Education / Physics Higher Education national conference in York. Nicole’s poster, presented at her first academic conference, was pitted against all the other delegates, including academic staff from institutions across the UK and beyond, and impressed the judges with both its clarity of presentation and research content. The winning poster summarised the work Nicole carried out during her fourth year chemical education research project with Dr Robson, completed as part of her MSci degree in Chemistry and Physics. Nicole’s work investigated students’ approaches to problem solving in physical chemistry, and her prize included a new Amazon Fire tablet. Well done, Nicole!

(4 Sep 2017)


Karl Coleman is the new Head of Department

The Department is delighted to welcome Professor Karl Coleman as Head of Department for the next three years. Karl graduated with a chemistry degree from Leicester University, held an individual Marie Curie Research Fellowship in Strasbourg, France then a Royal Society University Research Fellowship in Chemistry at the University of Oxford. He joined Durham Chemistry in 2004 and was promoted to a Reader in 2008 and Chair in 2012. Karl has held a number of leadership roles including Director of Research in the Chemistry Department.

(31 Jul 2017) » More about Karl Coleman is the new Head of Department


Durham Chemistry to combat Tropical Diseases

Academics from the Department of Chemistry (Graham Sandford, Steven Cobb and Patrick Steel) and the Department of Biosciences (Paul Denny and Ehmke Pohl) have joined forces with colleagues from York (Jeremy Mottram), Sao Paulo (Ariel Silber) and Kalkotta (Nahid Ali) to lead an ambitious effort to combat neglected tropical diseases (NTD) with a £8M Global Network. The insect-vector transmitted diseases leishmaniasis and Chagas disease represent huge challenges in endemic regions of South America, Africa and Asia. It is estimated that >350 million people world-wide are at risk from leishmaniasis with more than 20.000 deaths per year while more than seven million people suffer from Chagas diseases in South America alone.

(21 Jul 2017) » More about Durham Chemistry to combat Tropical Diseases


Rising Star Roisin Monaghan

Congratulations to Roisin Monaghan who won the Bill Bryson prize for Communication in Science at Rising Stars Research Symposium. She gave an excellent oral presentation on 'the synthesis of aryl and vinyl sulphides via visible light photoredox catalysis'. She carried out her undergraduate international research project with Dr Polyzos at Melbourne University, Australia.

(29 Jun 2017)


Materials in Industry RSC Award for Karl Coleman

Congratulations to Prof Karl Coleman on receiving the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) Derek Birchall - Materials in Industry Award. This prize runs biennially - following in the footsteps of Professor Tobin Marks, Northwestern University and Professor John W. Goodby, University of York.

(15 Jun 2017) » More about Materials in Industry RSC Award for Karl Coleman


Joint Durham-York Research Consortium

A research consortium between scientists from Durham and York chemistry departments was launched in May. The symposium titled "Mechanism-driven understanding in complex molecular systems" covered mechanistic-orientated research and capabilities at both institutions and included talks from industrialists. 

The consortium is aimed at encouraging research collaborations and sharing training resources, specialist expertise and techniques and further symposia are planned in the future.

(25 May 2017)


Excellence Award for Dr Pippa Coffer

Congratulations to Dr Pippa Coffer on receiving a Durham University Excellence in Learning and Teaching Award. These are awarded to “staff who have made an outstanding contribution to learning and teaching at Durham.”

For more details of the award scheme, see the DU webpage.

Pippa has been instrumental in the redevelopment of the L2 and L3 Inorganic, and L2 Physical Chemistry laboratory courses with the introduction of new experiments, activities, and different feedback methods to enhance student learning. She is also the Level 3 BSc Mentor, supporting Chemistry BSc students in their final year of study at Durham.

(17 May 2017)


Best poster prize for Tavleen Attari

Congratulations to Tavleen Attari on winning best poster titled “Synthesis and Structural Characterisation of Lithium-Rich Anti-Perovskites” at the Royal Society of Chemistry 2017 Scotland and North of England Electrochemistry Symposium (Butler Meeting). She is currently doing a PhD studying materials for use in lithium-ion batteries with Dr Karen Johnston.

(12 May 2017)


Prof Badyal awarded prestigious Tilden prize

Congratulations to Professor Jas Pal Badyal on the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) Tilden prize for his outstanding research.

 

More details on his award can be found at the University website

https://www.dur.ac.uk/news/newsitem/?itemno=31317

 

He became a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) and was nominated for the THE awards last year.

 

(9 May 2017)


Poster Prize Success for Jasmine Cross

Durham’s Jasmine Cross was a poster prize winner at the ISACS: Challenges in Inorganic Chemistry Conference held in Manchester in April 2017. Her poster, entitled “Organometallics as Histone Deacetylase Enzyme Inhibitors”, describes work carried out in the Walton group on ruthenium complexes as potential anticancer drugs. This work was also recently featured in a special edition of ChemPlusChem

The ISACS international conference brings together world-leading experts from several disciplines across the broad fields of inorganic chemistry and materials science. Durham was well represented by a number of PDRAs and PhD students, including Kevin Mason (PDRA, Parker Group), Ross Davidson (PDRA, Beeby Group), Jack Pike (PhD, Walton group) and Sergey Shuvaev (PhD, Parker Group).

(25 Apr 2017)


Methyl radical trapping success

Durham’s Dr David Carty, as part of a collaboration led by Professor Takamasa Momose of the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, has succeeded in trapping in a magnetic field the methyl radical, CH3, which is a chemically important reaction intermediate. The temperature of the trapped molecules is extremely low, 200 mK. 

(19 Apr 2017) » More about Methyl radical trapping success


Abigail Scott takes Chemistry into Schools

Third year MChem student Abigail Scott has had her final project for the Chemistry into Schools module featured in the Northern Echo. Working with the class science teacher, Sandra Elliott, Abigail taught Year 5 pupils at Fishburn Primary School a number of different chemistry activities which they then presented to the younger children in Year 1 as part of a very successful science fair. Abigail and the class teacher also discussed the success of the science fair on Star Radio. The Northern Echo article about Abigail’s project at Fishburn can be found here.

 

(20 Mar 2017) » More about Abigail Scott takes Chemistry into Schools


Brussels Sprouts in Dementia Research

Professor Andy Whiting's research group and co-workers from University of Aberdeen are investigating synthetic retinoic acid analogues as a potential cure for Alzheimer's disease. Some vegetables, such as Brussels Sprouts, naturally contain vitamin A which is metabolised to retinoic acid in the body, so eating your sprouts is a good thing, just as your Mother told you! This work is described in a Youtube video at:

(2 Mar 2017) » More about Brussels Sprouts in Dementia Research


Engineering Nickel supply for biotechnology

Durham scientists have helped uncover the pathway for biosynthesis of the yellow, nickel-containing coenzyme F430, essential in microorganisms that convert CO2 to methane, as reported today in Nature. Metal-catalysts, such as F430, are critical for life, and many of them have applications in biotechnology. The research, led by groups in Kent and Germany, showed that this catalyst is very similar in structure to other brightly coloured metal-catalysts from different organisms - the iron-containing red pigment haem found in our blood, and the magnesium containing green pigment chlorophyll found in plants. Key to the synthesis of these cofactors is the insertion of a metal ion, which is glued into the centre of the coenzyme. Peter Chivers from Durham University provided the expertise needed to engineer nickel insertion inside E. coli cells, paving the way for future applications of nickel catalysts in biotechnology.

(28 Feb 2017) » More about Engineering Nickel supply for biotechnology


Research looks at metals' roles in reactions of life

Nearly half of the reactions of life are driven by metals. Now a multidisciplinary collaboration between ten Durham University Bioscientists and Chemists has discovered how living cells are attuned to these vital elements.

This knowledge will assist in the engineering of metal supply to metalloenzymes for use in industrial biotechnology. It will support the development of bioactive compounds that subvert metal-handling inside microbes in order to replenish the dwindling arsenal of antimicrobial treatments.

The research has been published in Nature Chemical Biology.

(7 Feb 2017) » More about Research looks at metals' roles in reactions of life


Low cost synthesis of Flucytosine at Durham

Research between the Durham Fluorine group (Professor Graham Sandford) and industrial collaborators Sanofi-Aventis and MEPI in France, funded by the European Union Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI; www.imi.europa.eu) has led to a new, more efficient way of producing flucytosine, a WHO essential medicine used to treat a common and often deadly fungal form of meningitis in people with HIV / AIDS. Professor Graham Sandford and PhD student Antal Harsanyi (both shown in photograph) carried out the flucytosine synthesis at Durham.

(2 Feb 2017) » More about Low cost synthesis of Flucytosine at Durham


Front Cover from Ehmke Pohl's Chile Collaboration

In an international collaboration with Chile, Dr Ehmke Pohl has developed a new bio-informatics tool aimed at molecular biologist and synthetic chemist who want to investigate the effect of amino-acid changes in the protein chain of a protein with known structure. The programs not only presents a homology model that can be downloaded but also a detailed analysis of the electrostatic potential in order to allow the user to evaluate local as well as global changes caused by the residues exchange. The front cover is at

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/jcc.24747/full

along with a link to the study.

(27 Jan 2017)


Prof Beeby's Mappa Mundi investigation

Early January, Team-Pigment visited Hereford Cathedral to analyse the pigments used in the world famous Mappa Mundi which dates back to ca. 1300. This stylised world map is usually on display at the Cathedral, and the Durham/Northumbria team was given special permission to study it for three days. The team, shown below (Gamerson, Beeby (Durham) and Nicholson (Northumbria), used Raman and reflectance spectroscopies to determine for the first time some of the materials used to colour the map.

(18 Jan 2017)


Christmas Glassblowing Success at Durham

Our two very talented glassblowers, Aaron Brown and Malcolm Richardson, gave live glassblowing demonstrations at a very successful RSC christmas event in December. For more details, see

http://www.rsc.org/news-events/175-stories/2016/dec/christmas-glassblowing-on-teesside/

(17 Jan 2017)


Research into contrast agents on Serbian TV

Research by Professor David Parker into the research and development of contrast agents, which are extremely useful in clinical diagnosis, has featured on Serbian TV.

Professor Parker was interviewed by Serbian TV RTS2, at an international conference held in Belgrade at the end of September.

Commenting on his research, Professor Parker said:

"We are studying systems which are mainly used in magnetic resonance tomography. This is a technique that doctors use to aid diagnosis of disease. Many people are subjected to such scans in hospitals, and radiologists working with the doctors, explore the patient's body, by observing the water signal in the body. We are engaged in developing new chemical systems from scratch, and they will also be able to be observed during magnetic resonance imaging.

(5 Dec 2016) » More about Research into contrast agents on Serbian TV


Adams Poster Prizewinners 2016

Congratulations to Gemma Parker (1st prize), Andrei Markin (2nd) and Natalie Mitchell (3rd) in winning the D.B. Adams Poster prizes. These awards, inaugurated in 2014, are made annually in memory of Dr David Brinley Adams (Durham: BSc, 1967 – 1970, PhD, 1970 – 1973, Senior Demonstrator, 1973 – 1975) in recognition of academic excellence in the MChem poster competition.

(16 Nov 2016)


James Lewis awarded Poster Prize

Congratulations to James Lewis from John Evans’ group who won the poster prize at the joint meeting of the UK neutron diffraction user group, the Structural Condensed Matter group of the Institute of Physics and the Physical Crystallography Group of the British Crystallographic Association in the first week of November. James’ poster described his research on using group theoretical methods to automatically investigate possible structures of inorganic functional materials. 

(2 Nov 2016) » More about James Lewis awarded Poster Prize


Hannah Bolt's research reported in RSC News

Hannah Bolt, a PhD student, who works on peptoids (a class of biomimetic compounds) in Dr Steven Cobb and Dr Paul Denny’s labs was recently interviewed for RSC News about the successful work she carried out as part of a RSC Researcher Mobility Grant. Hannah visited Professor Ronald Zuckerman, a world expert in peptoids, at the Molecular Foundry in the US. The Molecular Foundry is based at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

For highlights of Hannah’s work in RSC News see - http://www.rsc.org/news-events/features/2016/sep/researcher-mobility-grants/

(5 Oct 2016)


THE Award Nomination for Jas Pal Badyal

Congratulations to Prof. Jas Pal Badyal of Durham Chemistry on being short-listed in the category

"Outstanding Contribution to Innovation and Technology".

for his work on liquid-repelling nanocoatings in the Times Higher Education (THE) awards.

See for details

https://www.dur.ac.uk/news/newsitem/?itemno=28797

 

(12 Sep 2016) » More about THE Award Nomination for Jas Pal Badyal


First prize for Peter Quinn

Congratulations to Peter Quinn (joint O'Donoghue-Hodgson groups) for winning first prize in the poster competition at the Royal Society of Chemistry Physical Organic Chemistry Postgraduate Symposium held in Syngenta, Berkshire.

(4 Aug 2016)


Durham Chemistry at successful Bath MSMLG meeting

Durham Chemists, Jon Steed, Paul McGonigal and Alyssa Avestro were invited to give talks at the 5th International Meeting on Sensors and Molecular Logic Gates (MSMLG), University of Bath. Congratulations to Alyssa who was awarded the MSMLG Networking Prize and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) Prize for International Collaboration. 

 

(3 Aug 2016) » More about Durham Chemistry at successful Bath MSMLG meeting


Jeremy Hutson awarded Thomson Medal

Congratulations to Professor Jeremy Hutson on receiving the Thomson Medal and Prize 2016 from the Institute of Physics (IoP) for his pioneering work on the theory of ultracold molecules. 

At temperatures around a millionth of a degree above absolute zero, atoms and molecules stop behaving as particles and become waves, which must be treated using the laws of quantum mechanics. Their motions can be controlled with exquisite precision using lasers and electric and magnetic fields. Jeremy Hutson and his research group have developed methods to calculate what happens when ultracold atoms and molecules collide in the presence of external fields, and have applied them to gain a new level of understanding of the interactions involved.

(3 Jul 2016) » More about Jeremy Hutson awarded Thomson Medal


Durham student wins Salters' Prize

The Department of Chemistry is pleased to announce that Lucy Arkinstall has been awarded one of the Salters' Graduate Prizes for 2016.

(28 Jun 2016) » More about Durham student wins Salters' Prize


Welcome Fraser Stoddart

A warm welcome to Sir Fraser Stoddart of Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois. He will present the prestigious Durham Lectures this week.

 

Details about Fraser can be found at

http://www.chemistry.northwestern.edu/people/core-faculty/profiles/j-fraser-stoddart.html

 

Information on the Durham Lectures are at

https://www.dur.ac.uk/chemistry/events/durham_lectures/

(21 Jun 2016)


Musgrave Lecture by Prof Steve Ley CBE

On Wednesday May 18, we welcome Professor Steve Ley CBE FRS, (Cambridge University) to give the 2016 Musgrave Lecture. This biannual series of lectures began in 1986 , and previous Lecturers have included Jean-Marie Lehn and Rolf Huisgen. On this occasion, supporting lectures will also be given by Prof Paul Brennan (Oxford) and Dr Stuart Warriner (Leeds), and the lectures begin at 13.30 in CG 93. The title of the Lecture is: 'Challenges and Opportunities in Natural Product Synthesis'.

(11 May 2016)


Welcome to Dr Dominikus Heift

Dr Dominikus Heift joined the Chemistry Department this week as an EU-funded COFUND Junior Research fellow working alongside Dr Phil Dyer’s group.
Dominikus will be working in the area of organo-antimony and -bismuth chemistry developing systems for small molecule activation and for bio-medical applications.
He joins Durham having completed a post-doctoral stay with Prof. Bruno Chaudret (Laboratoire de Physique et Chimie des Nano-objets, Toulouse), working in the area of metal nanoparticle chemistry, and having studied for his PhD in developing building blocks for organophosphorus chemistry with Prof. Hansjörg Grützmacher (ETH, Zürich).

(5 May 2016)


Hannah Bolt and Aisha Bismillah receive awards

Congratulations to Aisha Bismillah (McGonigal Group) and Hannah Bolt (Cobb Group) who scooped 3 out of the 4 awards at the annual Faculty of Science Poster Competition.

(4 May 2016)


Prof J.P.S. Badyal FRS

Professor Jas Pal Badyal of our department has received the honour of a
Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS). The fellowship of the Royal Society
includes around 80 Nobel Laureates. Jas Pal has been recognised for his
pioneering research on the functionalization of solid surfaces and
deposition of functional nanolayers. He has invented a wide range of novel
surfaces for technological and societal applications. These have been
underpinned by the investigation of fundamental mechanisms and scale-up.
Examples include: antibacterial, fog harvesting, catalysis, non-fouling,
optochiral switches, filtration, biochips, super-repellency, and
nano-actuation. For more details about Jas Pal's research, see:

https://royalsociety.org/people/jas-badyal-12843/

https://www.dur.ac.uk/news/newsitem/?itemno=27909

(3 May 2016)


Durham Chemistry Department ‘Celebrating Excellence'

Members of the Chemistry Department played a leading role at the annual 2016 Durham University Celebrating Excellence Dinner, hosted by the Vice Chancellor, Professor Stuart Corbridge, which was held in the Great Hall, University College. The photograph shows Members of the Chemistry Department at the Durham University 2016 Celebrating Excellence Dinner: left to right: Prof Jim Feast CBE FRS, Prof Andy Beeby, Prof Judith Howard CBE FRS, Prof Graham Sandford, Prof Dick Chambers FRS, Prof Jas Pal Badyal, Dr. Alyssa-Jennifer Avestro, Prof Mark Wilson, Prof Chris Greenwell (Earth Sciences/Chemistry).

(28 Apr 2016) » More about Durham Chemistry Department ‘Celebrating Excellence'


Prestigious Faraday Symposium held at Durham

Durham Chemistry successfully hosted the prestigious Faraday Awards Symposium on 20th April. Five award lectures were given by Prof Nico Sommerdijk (Soft Matter & Biophysical Chemistry Award), Philipp Kukura (Marlow Award), Flemming Hansen (Marlow Award), David Wales (Tilden Prize) and Lyndon Emsley (Bourke Award). Prizes were awarded by Prof Graham Hutchings and RSC Faraday Division Secretary, Marie Cote. The day was attended by more than 80 colleagues, families and friends from Durham, the North East and beyond. It was a fantastic celebration of Physical Chemistry, showcasing some of the most eminent leaders and emerging talent in the field. 

 

(21 Apr 2016)


Kerry Strong wins Apprentice Award

Kerry Strong, Apprentice Technician in Chemistry, has been selected as the winner of Durham University Apprentice of the Year Award in Academic Departments in 2015-16. This is a great achievement for Kerry and demonstrates both her capabilities and enthusiasm for her work. She was nominated by her Line Manager, Emma Smart and was selected from a group of other apprentices working within the University. 

(18 Apr 2016) » More about Kerry Strong wins Apprentice Award


Rubber Breakdown Research in Chemistry World

A team of chemists led by Dr Ezat Khosravi have developed a remarkable new way to break down styrene butadiene rubber at room temperature and without mechanical input, by placing it in dichloromethane with a ruthenium-based Grubbs’ catalyst. The original article is published in Green Chemistry and highlighted in Chemistry World. 

‘In natural rubber you see the presence of double bonds,’ explains Khosravi. ‘We thought by implementing cross metathesis using a ruthenium initiator we would be able to break down the rubber network in the presence of a simple ester, but surprisingly the reaction worked with just the catalyst, which was very interesting.’ Khosravi's Durham colleague Dr Richard Thompson helped analyse why the reaction still works without the ester.

(1 Apr 2016)


Water molecules cooperate to break hydrogen bonds via quantum tunnelling

Quantum tunneling in the smallest water droplet

A collaboration between theoretical and experimental chemists, led by the Department of Chemistry, was able to observe and explain the hydrogen-bond breaking motions of water molecules in a cluster. Although at very low temperatures, the molecules do not have enough energy to overcome the potential barriers, they are able to tunnel through them. In this work, published in Science, it was shown that the cluster was able to simultaneously break two hydrogen bonds by moving cooperatively. The theoretical study was carried out by Dr Jeremy Richardson using novel methods developed in his research for studying the complex dynamics of quantum molecular systems. 

(21 Mar 2016) » More about Water molecules cooperate to break hydrogen bonds via quantum tunnelling


Simon Beaumont with UK's first NAPXPS spectrum

Simon Beaumont carried out the first experiments at the Diamond Light Source's new Near Ambient Pressure X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy endstation, VERSOX on 16th February. The photograph below shows the team, also including researchers from Aston University and the beamline scientists, just after the first ever spectrum was recorded with this instrument - a UK first. 

(26 Feb 2016) » More about Simon Beaumont with UK's first NAPXPS spectrum


Beeby and Gameson study a really old book!

The Codex Bezae Cantabrigensis is a codex of the New Testament dating from the 5th century written in an uncial hand on vellum. It contains, in both Greek and Latin, most of the four Gospels and Acts. It is an extremely fragile and important book - over 1500 years old - it is one of the oldest books in Britain. Professor Andy Beeby and Professor Richard Gameson were analysing the red pigment found at the end and start of each gospel book.

 

(16 Feb 2016)


Swiss Internship for George Lewis

Congratulations to George Lewis, a second-year Chemistry and Physics joint honours student, who has secured a NCCR Bio-inspired Materials undergraduate summer internship based at the University of Fribourg in Switzerland. George will work for 8 weeks with Prof. Ullrich Steiner on a project entitled “Exploring the potential of pluronic block copolymers as structure-directing agents in engineering electrode materials for lithium-ion batteries”. As well aslearning basic sol-gel based synthesis and routine characterization, George will also gain hands-on experience in electrode fabrication, battery assembly and electrochemical tests.

(12 Feb 2016)


Durham Research to be Showcased at Westminster

Maria Czyzewska and Hannah Bolt both PhD students in Dr. Steven Cobb’s research group have been selected to present their science to Members of both Houses of Parliament at Westminster at the 2016 SET for BRITAIN event. Maria and Hannah’s abstracts were selected from over 600 applications. Maria will present her work on the development of a new 19F-NMR based anti-doping test in the Biological and Biomedical Science category and Hannah will present her work on the development of new treatments for the neglected tropical diseases in the Chemistry category. Dr James Radcliffe (who undertook his PhD in Dr Phil Dyer’s group) was also selected to present his work through a poster entitled “Catalysis By Design: The Selective Production of Key Feedstocks for Advanced Polyethylene Manufacture” in the Chemistry Session of SET for BRITAIN, showcasing work he undertook during his PhD in Durham in collaboration with Sasol Technology UK.

(2 Feb 2016)


Newton Fund Scheme for Centre of Soft Matter

The Durham Centre for Soft Matter was awarded funds (£120,000) from the Newton Fund International PhD Partnering Scheme last November, to establish a PhD student exchange program with a consortium of South African universities, coordinated by the University of Stellenbosch, who received a similar sum of money. The aim of the Scheme is to facilitate the building of sustainable, long-lasting links between UK and international Research Organisations to support the training of PhD students and the development of an international cohort of early career researchers with the skills, links and contacts to operate in the global research environment.

 

(2 Feb 2016) » More about Newton Fund Scheme for Centre of Soft Matter


BSAC Grant to Develop Next Generation Antibiotics

The rising prevalence of antibiotic resistance has increased the need for research on novel antimicrobials to replace or complement current treatments for infectious diseases. The challenge lies in finding new molecules with novel modes of action. To tackle this challenge Dr Steven Cobb (Chemistry) and Dr Fionnuala Lundy (Centre for Infection and Immunity, Queens University Belfast) have been awarded a grant from the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy (BSAC - www.bsac.org.uk). 

(20 Jan 2016)


Simon Beaumont on Next-Generation Catalyst Design

Exciting work from Simon Beaumont’s group (as part of a collaborative research team comprising researchers at Aston and Leeds universities) has just been published in the high-impact journal Nature Materials.

The study reports the successful selective dual-functionalisation of porous materials with a high degree of spatial control over where each functionality is located (selectively to either large or small pores). The value of these new materials is demonstrated as unusually selective catalysts for an otherwise challenging one-pot oxidation of cinnamyl alcohol to cinnamic acid.

(17 Nov 2015) » More about Simon Beaumont on Next-Generation Catalyst Design


BSc Awards for Carole Hubery and Emma Elliott

Many congratulations to Carole Hubery and Emma Elliott on their Bachelor of Science awards from Open University (OU). They recently graduated at Birmingham Symphony Hall on Saturday 17th October. They thoroughly enjoyed being graduands, taking part after years of being in the audience of graduation ceremonies here.

(6 Nov 2015) » More about BSc Awards for Carole Hubery and Emma Elliott


Dr Zhao wins RSC poster prize

Congratulations to Dr Xiaotao Zhao (current PDRA in the Bryce group) who was awarded joint 1st prize in the poster competition at the RSC 2nd Asian-European Symposium on Organic Optoelectronics, Edinburgh 27-29 October 2015. The photo shows the two prizewinners with Professor Graeme Cooke from University of Glasgow (Graeme obtained his PhD in the Bryce group in 1992!).

(30 Oct 2015)


Tony Harsanyi wins Fluorine Chemistry Prize

Tony Harsanyi (3rd year PhD student, Graham Sandford Fluorine Group) was awarded a poster prize (500 euro) sponsored by the German Chemical Industry group of the German Chemical society (GDCh) at the recent 21st International Symposium on Fluorine Chemistry, Como, Italy (www.fluorine-como2015.eu). The poster, titled ‘Synthesis of fluoromalonate esters: Assessment of the greenness of direct fluorination’, was selected from over 100 contributions.

(25 Sep 2015)


Yousilliya Bunga wins Electrochem Poster Prize

Congratulations to Yousilliya Bunga for winning the first prize at the poster competition held at the Electrochem 2015 conference, Durham, 13-15 Sept 2015. Her poster entitled ‘Metal nanoparticles and their interactions with lipid membranes immobilised on gold electrode’ was selected amongst 65 entries.

(18 Sep 2015)


Tim Williamson wins Science Council award

Congratulations to Tim Williamson who won the RSciTech category of the CPD (continuing professional development) Award. The awarding panel felt that the report was an excellent example of good CPD; comprehensive, thorough and demonstrating a broad range of activity and engagement. Tim has been invited to attend the upcoming CPD Workshop in Covent Garden on 23rd September to accept the award.

(2 Sep 2015)


Fuel Cells Get Cool

Work from Ivana Evans’ group on materials for solid oxide fuel cells has been highlighted in the Institut Laue Langevin’s report “Neutrons and Energy 2015” The article on page 8 of the brochure describes experimental and computational studies on materials which show high oxide ion conductivities at low temperature. These properties are needed for solid oxide fuel cells which convert chemical energy directly to electrical energy. 

(26 Aug 2015) » More about Fuel Cells Get Cool


Researcher Mobility Grant for Hannah Bolt

Hannah Bolt a 2nd year PhD student working with Dr Steven Cobb (Chemistry) and Dr Paul Denny (Medicine, Pharmacy and Health) has been awarded a Researcher Mobility Grant from The Royal Society of Chemistry and the Biological and Medicinal Chemistry Sector (BMCS). The grant will fund a research placement for Hannah enabling her to work at the Molecular Foundry, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (USA) to work with Prof. Ronald Zuckermann. Hannah’s work will focus on the synthesis of a peptoid library for structure activity studies against the neglected tropical disease Leishmaniasis.

(26 Aug 2015)


Building blocks for new materials

Work from John Evans' group features on the cover of “Inorganic Chemistry” this August. The paper is the culmination of three publications in ACS journals this year which show how it’s possible to create controlled transition metal arrays in a family of oxychalcogenide materials related to the iron arsenide superconductors. The first two publications described how the apparently complex superstructures of these materials could be rationalised using (3+1)D or superspace crystallography, leading to the idea of an “infinitely adaptive” family of materials. The latest paper describes 60 new compositions showing how the resulting “building block” ideas can be used to create new materials.

(6 Aug 2015) » More about Building blocks for new materials


Chemists examine pigments in Gospels

Scientists from Durham and Northumbria Universities have used Raman spectroscopy to examine the St Augustine Gospels at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge. They were thought to have been written in the 6th Century in Italy and possibly brought to Britain by St Augustine of Canterbury himself. This manuscript is the oldest surviving Latin illustrated Gospel book and one of the oldest European books in existence. 

(10 Jul 2015) » More about Chemists examine pigments in Gospels


Adams Poster Prizewinners 2015

Congratulations to Christian Wells (1st prize), Rowan von Spreckelsen (2nd) and Sean Boardman in winning the D.B. Adams Poster prizes. These awards, inaugurated in 2014, are made annually in memory of Dr David Brinley Adams (Durham: BSc, 1967 – 1970, PhD, 1970 – 1973, Senior Demonstrator, 1973 – 1975) in recognition of academic excellence in the MChem poster competition.

(3 Jul 2015)


Hannah Bolt wins RSC Presentation Prize

Congratulations to Hannah Bolt, a second year student in the Cobb group (working in collaboration with Paul Denny), who was awarded first prize for the best oral presentation at the recent RSC Chemical Biology and Bio-Organic Chemistry Postgraduate Symposium at Bristol University. Her talk was titled 'Developing Peptide-Mimetics for the Treatment of Cutaneous Leishmaniasis' 

(1 Jun 2015) » More about Hannah Bolt wins RSC Presentation Prize


Chemistry World article by Sam Lear

Congratulations to Sam Lear, a PhD student in the Cobb group, who was a runner up in the recent RSC World Science Communication Competition. Sam’s 800 word article based on this year’s topic: chemistry and art secured him second place in the final which was recently held at Burlington house. Sam’s article “Perfumery: the molecular art form” is available to read in Chemistry World (May issue).

(21 May 2015)


Durham Chemistry wins Teamwork Innovation Award 2015

The Procter & Gamble and Durham University Partnership has won the Royal Society of Chemistry’s 2015 Teamwork in Innovation Award consisting of £4,000 and a trophy. This was given in recognition of the multidisciplinary, collaborative and high-impact research leading to product innovation.

(12 May 2015) » More about Durham Chemistry wins Teamwork Innovation Award 2015


Durham Chemistry tops the rankings

Durham Chemistry has risen to second position in the 2016 Complete University Guide, securing its position as a top department for the study of chemistry, providing our students with an excellent academic environment for research-led study with other bright minds leading to excellent employability prospects. Durham Chemistry’s rise to second position now places it ahead of Oxford Chemistry (in third place). Durham Chemistry students have higher entry qualifications than any other British university except Cambridge, and our final year students are amongst the most satisfied students with the quality of their teaching and learning experience. Durham Chemistry students are taught by academic staff whose research is world-leading, and has the greatest societal impact of any UK Chemistry department, as measured by REF2014.

 

(29 Apr 2015) » More about Durham Chemistry tops the rankings


Liz Grayson wins Excellence Award

Congratulations to Liz Grayson who is a winner of the University's
Excellence in Learning and teaching Award. The award is in recognition of Liz's outstanding contribution to learning and teaching, which has taken place in the Department of Chemistry over many years.


(23 Apr 2015)


Showcase Study for UK Chemistry Published in Nature

An Impact Case Study from Professor Jas Pal Badyal's research was selected as a REF 2014 showcase study for UK Chemistry and published in Nature (one of the three examples chosen by HEFCE from across the whole of UK Engineering and Physical Sciences). Jas Pal has been studying chemical reactions taking place on solid surfaces since the late 1980s. This has led to a range of patented functional surfaces, including super-repellent surfaces which have been used to make over 100 million smartphones splashproof. Successful start-up companies from his group include P2i, Surface Innovations, and Dow Corning Plasma - all a result of curiosity driven basic research.

(21 Apr 2015) » More about Showcase Study for UK Chemistry Published in Nature


Durham Chemistry Down Under

March 2015: Sydney University was treated to a feast of Durham chemistry, with three seminars from Durham academics in 8 days. Prof John Evans gave the Sydney Chemical Society’s “Francis Lions Memorial Lecture” on functional inorganic materials and Dr Ivana Evans and Dr James Walton gave departmental seminars. 

(26 Mar 2015) » More about Durham Chemistry Down Under


Anti-Parasite Peptoids by Cobb and Denny Groups

Recent exciting work on linear peptoids by the Steven Cobb (Chemistry) and Paul Denny (Medicine and Health) groups was featured as an Editor's choice article and on the inside cover of ChemMedChem. For the issue see:

(27 Jan 2015) » More about Anti-Parasite Peptoids by Cobb and Denny Groups


Sam Lear in Finals of RSC Science Competition

Sam Lear, a PhD student in the Cobb group, had reached the final stages of the Royal Society of Chemistry Chemistry World Science Communication Competition 2014 (http://www.rsc.org/chemistryworld/2013/10/chemistry-world-competition-science-communication). 

(21 Jan 2015) » More about Sam Lear in Finals of RSC Science Competition


Lectureships for Ben Murray and Stephen Butler

Congratulations to Dr Ben Murray on a Lectureship in Inorganic Chemistry at Hull University from February 2015 and Dr Stephen Butler on a Lectureship in Organic Chemistry at Loughborough University from May 2015. Stephen currently holds a Ramsey Fellowship while Ben was a former member (2005-2008) in the David Parker research group here. 

(2 Jan 2015)


Research Awards for Filip Kielar and Elizabeth New

Congratulations to Drs Filip Kielar (Naresuan University, Thailand) and Elizabeth New (Sydney University, Australia) on receiving Early Career Research Awards for excellence in biological inorganic chemistry. Filip (2004-7) and Elizabeth (2006-9) were former members in Prof David Parker's research group here.

(2 Jan 2015)


Ken Wade Commemoration Symposium

Following the very sad news that our colleague and friend Prof. Ken Wade (FRS) passed away in March this year, Durham University’s Chemistry Department, with sponsorship and support from the Dalton Division of the Royal Society of Chemistry, held a one-day symposium in his honour on 15th December. Hosting this meeting in Durham was particularly poignant, as Ken spent the majority of his scientific career in Durham, joining the Chemistry Department as a lecturer in 1961. Although Ken formally retired from Durham in 1997, he continued his enthusiastic and active involvement with the Department as an Emeritus chair for another sixteen years. 

(24 Dec 2014) » More about Ken Wade Commemoration Symposium


REF 2014 - Durham Chemistry tops UK research impact

Durham Chemistry Department topped the UK research impact charts in the December 2014 REF (Research Excellence Framework). The Head of Department, Prof. Mark Wilson, congratulated the staff for their "fantastic work". The impact tables are a measure of how research work done in universities makes a difference in terms of the economy and society. 76% of Durham Chemistry’s research activity was ranked as 4* (outstanding), ahead of Cambridge and Liverpool who were in 2nd and 3rd place in the tables with 60%. Additionally, 100% of our research impact was ranked as making an outstanding or very considerable (economic or societal) impact.

(18 Dec 2014) » More about REF 2014 - Durham Chemistry tops UK research impact


Postgraduate Open Day

The Chemistry Department Postgraduate Open Day on Wednesday 12th November 2014 will provide an opportunity to speak to members of staff about projects that will start in October 2015. Travel costs from within the UK will be covered by the Chemistry Department. For more details, see

https://www.dur.ac.uk/chemistry/postgraduate/openday/

(29 Oct 2014)


Fulbright Scholarship for Branton Campbell

We welcome Professor Branton Campbell who has won a Fulbright Scholarship to spend a sabbatical year in Durham. Branton is from the Department of Physics at Brigham Young University and will be working with John Evans and Ivana Evans in the Chemistry Department. 

(16 Sep 2014) » More about Fulbright Scholarship for Branton Campbell


Dr Walton wins award in Zurich

Dr James Walton won a poster prize at the European Biological Inorganic Chemistry Conference (EuroBIC 12) in Zurich in August. The poster was entitled “EuroTracker Dyes: Very Bright Europium Complexes for Live Cell Imaging” and showed some of the work carried out during his PhD study with Prof David Parker.

(3 Sep 2014) » More about Dr Walton wins award in Zurich


Durham Chemists in Brazil

Jack Rowbotham and Dr James Walton attended the “Brazilian Meeting on Inorganic Chemistry” in Araxa, Brazil in August. Jack’s trip was funded through the RSC after he won first prize in a poster competition at the Dalton 2014 meeting in Warwick and James was awarded a bursary from the RSC to attend the conference.

(3 Sep 2014) » More about Durham Chemists in Brazil


A Chemist in the Commons Part 2

Durham Chemistry’s Jack Rowbotham  (3rd year PhD student working jointly with Phil Dyer and Chris Greenwell) was intimately involved in both the preparation and defence of a report while working as a Committee Specialist during his 3 month secondment the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (POST), following award of an RSC Westminster Fellowship.
 

(4 Aug 2014) » More about A Chemist in the Commons Part 2


Third Poster Prize for Jack Rowbotham

Jack Rowbotham (3rd year PhD student working jointly with Phil Dyer and Chris Greenwell) scored his hat-trick of poster successes for this year at the Anglo-German Inorganic Chemistry Conference (AgiChem) held in Edinburgh (30 July-1 Aug)Jack’s multi-award-winning poster entitled “Opening the Egg-box: Solution-state Studies of s-Block Metals with Seaweed Sugars” took first prize from a field of 70 posters. 

(4 Aug 2014) » More about Third Poster Prize for Jack Rowbotham


Celebration of new Chemistry facilities

Durham officially opened new facilities in NMR, X-ray diffraction, Mass Spectrometry and Microscopy this July. The equipment was purchased as part of the EPSRC’s “core capability” programme, which invested over £15m in Chemistry department’s across the country. Durham’s award was part of a coordinated set of proposals by Chemistry Departments in the N8 group which provided equipment that can be accessed by researchers across the consortium. A launch event was held in Manchester on 21/7 and featured lectures describing the state-of-the-art in each of the four techniques.

(28 Jul 2014) » More about Celebration of new Chemistry facilities


Mark Senn awarded 1851 fellowship

Congratulations to Mark Senn on receiving a prestigious Research Fellowship by the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851. Mark was an undergraduate at Durham and has a 2006 publication from his MChem research project here. 

Mark is currently a postdoctoral research scientist on the Materials and Magnetism I16 Beamline at the Diamond Light Source, having previously carried out his Ph.D. studies with Paul Attfield at the University of Edinburgh.

(28 Jul 2014)


Katie Finney wins prize in Ireland

Congratulations to Katie Finney on winning a poster prize at the RSC International Meeting on Challenges in Inorganic and Materials Chemistry (ISACS13) in Dublin in July. Her poster was titled 'Development of 1H PARASHIFT Probes for Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy and Imaging'.  

(9 Jul 2014) » More about Katie Finney wins prize in Ireland


Chemistry Staff vs Students Cricket

The annual staff student cricket match was held on 25th June at Durham City Cricket Club. More than 100 spectators watched a fantastic game of cricket that went down to the last ball, with the staff team requiring a single run to win. The staff held their nerve to take the victory and retain the Lyn Williams trophy. There were notable staff performances from Dr. Eckart Wrede, Prof. Jon Steed, Dr. Chris Coxon and Prof. David Parker. The student team put up a great fight with superb performances from George Harrison (2nd yr.) and their captain, Vishnu Shastry (3rd yr. finalist). Many thanks to Dr James Walton for organising this successful event.
 

(7 Jul 2014)


Durham DFT Conference Special Issue

High quality papers from international speakers at the DFT2013 meeting in Durham have been compiled in a special issue of Physical Chemistry - Chemical Physics (PCCP). The conference and the content of the special issue were described in the editorial by the organisers, Professor David Tozer and Dr Michael Peach.

(1 Jul 2014) » More about Durham DFT Conference Special Issue


Adams Poster Prizewinners

Joanna, Callum and Lucy

Congratulations to Joanna Starkie (1st prize), Callum Foden (2nd) and Lucy Norton in winning the D.B. Adams Poster prizes. These awards, inaugurated in 2014, are made annually in memory of Dr David Brinley Adams (Durham: BSc, 1967 – 1970, PhD, 1970 – 1973, Senior Demonstrator, 1973 – 1975) in recognition of academic excellence in the MChem poster competition. 

(30 Jun 2014)


Final Year Chemistry Prizewinners

Congratulations to the final year undergraduate prize winners:

Prize for Mastership of Chemistry 2014:Andrew Frawley for outstanding performance in final examinations for the degree of Master of Chemistry.

Harrison Shearer Prize 2014: Peter Tratalos for outstanding performance in final examinations for the degree of B.Sc. in Chemistry

Alumni Thesis Prize 2014: Sarah Collins for outstanding performance in production of a 4th year MChem or MSci thesis. Sarah carried out her 4th year research project with Dr David Hodgson and Dr Martin Schroder.

(30 Jun 2014)


Presentation award for Mehrin Chowdhury

Congratulations to Mehrin Chowdhury who was awarded a prize for her oral presentation on “The study of fat emulsification using electrochemical and crystallisation methods” at the Post Graduate Research Topics Meeting in Electroanalysis and Sensing at Birkbeck in May 2014. Mehrin is in the third year of her PhD study with Dr Ritu Kataky.

(20 Jun 2014)


PG Symposium Success

Our postgraduates and Keynote PDRA speakers made the Durham postgraduate (PG) symposium on 18th June a success - a really enjoyable event, well attended and lively. All the speakers showed an extraordinarily high degree of professionalism.

(19 Jun 2014) » More about PG Symposium Success


California for Hannah Bolt

Congratulations to Hannah Bolt, a first year PhD student working with Dr Steven Cobb and Dr Paul Denny, who has been awarded a grant from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (http://www.lbl.gov/) and a Van Mildert College Postgraduate Award. Hannah’s research is focused on developing peptoids, a class of peptide mimetics, as a new type of agent for treatment of the neglected tropical disease Leishmaniasis.

(9 Jun 2014) » More about California for Hannah Bolt


Durham Lectures 2014

The department is delighted to welcome Professor David Nesbitt of the University of Colarado in Boulder as the 2014 Durham Lecturer.

Further details of the Durham Lectures for 2014 can be found here.

(9 Jun 2014)


Durham Chemistry retains 3rd place overall in UK

Our chemistry department has retained its high ranking in the Independent Complete University Guide for 2015. 

The 2015 rankings are at: 

http://www.thecompleteuniversityguide.co.uk/league-tables/rankings?s=Chemistry

(2 Jun 2014)


Royal Society Fellowship for Robert Pal

Many congratulations to Dr. Robert Pal for a prestigious University Research Fellowship from the Royal Society to study the Development and Chemical Application of Phase Modulation Nanoscopy. Robert will hold his Fellowship in the Chemistry Department, from the 1st October this year. After completing his PhD in 2008, he has been working as a postdoctoral research assistant in the Department and has transformed himself from an organic chemist to a well recognised microscopist. He also serves as the Technical Director of the successful University spin out company, FScan Ltd. 

 

(15 May 2014) » More about Royal Society Fellowship for Robert Pal


Smart Coatings for Oil Clean-Ups

An article in the journal ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces by Professor Jas-Pal Badyal's group was highlighted in the American Chemical Society (ACS) press release concerning hot topics for journalists. The hot article is titled 'New smart coating could make oil-spill clean-up faster and more efficient'.

(14 May 2014) » More about Smart Coatings for Oil Clean-Ups


Elizabeth Wood Retirement

Elizabeth Wood retired on Thursday 19th April after 46 years in the Chemistry Department. She joined us in September 1967 working in the 2nd & 3rd year organic teaching labs and ran the infrared spectrometry and CH&N services. She also carried out inorganic research (S4N4) with Dr Banister and worked for the Open University, Prof Feast and Dr Yarwood here. 

(1 May 2014) » More about Elizabeth Wood Retirement


From Warwick to Brazil!

At the recent Dalton 2014 meeting held in Warwick in April, an event that brings together four of the main inorganic chemistry discussion groups of the RSC's Dalton Division, Jack Rowbotham won, not only one of two poster prizes awarded by the RSC journal Chemical Sciences, but also the award for the best overall poster at the meeting! Jack’s prize is to represent the UK at the forthcoming XVII Brazillian Meeting on Inorganic Chemistry (BMIC; http://bmic2014.ufmg.br) in Araxa, Brazil, in August of this year.

(1 May 2014) » More about From Warwick to Brazil!


School Science Festival Success

On 1st-3rd April 2014, Durham University’s School of Biological and Biomedical Sciences played host to this year’s Schools Science Festival. Twenty-five schools from the surrounding area brought groups of 13-15 year old students to experience a day of the fun side of science.

(12 Apr 2014) » More about School Science Festival Success


A Chemist in The Commons

Jack Rowbotham has just returned to Durham following his 3-month RSC Westminster Fellowship, during which Jack worked for the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (POST), spending his time advising the Energy and Climate Change Select Committee. Jack is currently a PhD student with Dr Phil Dyer and Dr Chris Greenwell.
 

(10 Apr 2014) » More about A Chemist in The Commons


BCA Poster Prize for Matthew Tate

Congratulations to Matt Tate who was awarded the “Solid State Chemistry Poster Prize” at this week’s British Crystallographic Association conference. Matt was a Durham M. Chem. student and is currently in the first year of his PhD working on oxide ion conductors for energy-related applications with Dr Ivana Evans. Matt’s poster was on structural properties of Nb doped bismuth oxides.

(10 Apr 2014)


David Parker awarded RISE fellowship

Congratulations to Professor David Parker who has been honoured as a Recognising Inspirational Scientists and Engineers (RISE) Fellow. The RISE initiative, a partnership between the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council and the Royal Academy of Engineering, recognises established and future research leaders in engineering and the physical sciences.

 

(10 Apr 2014) » More about David Parker awarded RISE fellowship


2014 Powder Diffraction and Rietveld Refinement school

Durham Chemistry welcomed 70 delegates to the 2014 Powder Diffraction and Rietveld Refinement school last week. The PhD+ level training school was organised by Ivana and John Evans and students came from 20 different countries, including participants from as far afield as Brazil, China and an ursine representative from Australia. 

(8 Apr 2014) » More about 2014 Powder Diffraction and Rietveld Refinement school


Prof Ken Wade

It is with great sadness that we pass on the news that Prof. Ken Wade (1932–2014) passed away on 16th March. Ken joined the Durham Chemistry in 1961, was Head of Department from 1986 until 1989 and continued to be extremely active in Durham Chemistry after his formal retirement in 1997. He will be greatly missed.

(19 Mar 2014) » More about Prof Ken Wade


Caitlin Langford wins Biomaterials Poster Prize

Congratulations to Caitlin Langford on winning a poster prize at the RSC Biomaterials conference at the University of Manchester on the 7 & 8th Jan this year. The title of her poster was “Post-polymerization Functionalization of Thiol-Acrylate Emulsion Templated Porous Polymers”.

(13 Mar 2014)


Esma Okur awarded top prize at Tokyo meeting

Congratulations to Esma Okur on an award for best poster at the International School and Symposium on Molecular Materials (ISSMM2013) in Tokyo on November 2013. Her poster was titled "Structural and Electronic Properties of KxCs3-xC60 Fulleride Superconductors".

(13 Mar 2014)


Tracker Dyes Grant Success

Congratulations to Professor David Parker and Dr Robert Pal on a large EPSRC award to carry out a project titled "EuroTracker Dyes: Synthesis and Application in Functional Cell Imaging". This project involves developing bright europium (Eu) complexes as stains and responsive probes of particular organelles within living cells.

(13 Mar 2014) » More about Tracker Dyes Grant Success


Durham Crystallography in top journal Science

A stunning image of X-ray diffraction data collected from a benzene single crystal taken during research carried out by Professor Judith Howard and Dr Michael Probert appears on the front cover of the latest issue of the prestigious journal ScienceTogether with former Durham PhD student and postdoctoral fellow Dr Michael Probert, Judith has reviewed recent developments in single-crystal X-ray studies of chemical and materials sciences in an article which is one of the main features in Science’s 100 year celebration of Crystallography.

(11 Mar 2014) » More about Durham Crystallography in top journal Science


Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award for Kosmas Prassides

Congratulations to Professor Kosmas Prassides on his appointment as a Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award holder for research on "New Chemistry of Functional Molecular Materials". Professor Prassides is an authority on molecular superconductors and the physics and chemistry of condensed matter. Jointly funded by the Wolfson Foundation and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), the Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award scheme provides universities with additional support to enable them to attract science talent from overseas and retain respected UK scientists of outstanding achievement and potential.

(31 Jan 2014)


Jennifer Norcliffe wins Poster Prize

Congratulations to Jenny Norcliffe on winning a runners-up poster prize at the RSC BMCS Biological and Medicinal Chemistry Postgraduate Symposium held at Cambridge University last December. This symposium was designed to showcase the very best postgraduate research in the field of biological chemistry and medicinal chemistry. 

(21 Jan 2014) » More about Jennifer Norcliffe wins Poster Prize


Metals in Biology Grant Success

Universities and Science Minister David Willetts announced that Durham would receive a share of an initial £18 million to develop networks with companies and other Universities to harness the properties of metals found in biological molecules. Durham is unusual in having biologists embedded in its Department of Chemistry to enable deeper understanding of how elements such as metals interact with the molecules of living organisms. Metals are now estimated to drive about half of the reactions of life. These vital elements include iron, calcium, magnesium and zinc plus some less appreciated essential metals such as copper, cobalt, manganese and nickel. In all, nearly a third of genes need some metal or other for their products to work.

(19 Dec 2013) » More about Metals in Biology Grant Success


Katharina Fucke joins School of Pharmacy

Congratulations to Dr Katharina (Kathi) Fucke on her appointment as a lecturer of pharmaceutics at the new School of Pharmacy at Queen's campus. Her research will focus on structural investigation of amorphous and crystalline pharmaceuticals using X-ray and neutron scattering techniques. From 2009 to 2012, Kathi was a PDRA in the research group of Prof Jon Steed studying the importance of water in crystal structures at Durham. 

(16 Dec 2013) » More about Katharina Fucke joins School of Pharmacy


Barry Barker Retirement

Barry Barker retired on Friday 29th November after 44 years in the Chemistry Department. Barry joined us in 1969 as a junior technician and held various roles in the Department before transferring into electronics and moving up to become the electronics workshop leader. The support from Barry and the rest of the electronics team has had a huge impact on the teaching and research of the Department. We wish Barry a long and happy retirement.

(2 Dec 2013)


Graphene Spin-Off Flotation Success

Professor Karl Coleman’s Durham Graphene Science (DGS) spin-out has floated on the stock market as “Applied Graphene Materials” (AGM). The flotation was two times over-subscribed, raised £11m and the first day share price rise from 155 to 216p valued the company at £36 million. The national press (Times, Guardian, Express, Sun) had stories on this with photographs of Maria Sharapova and Andy Murray due to graphene materials present in tennis rackets. 

(25 Nov 2013) » More about Graphene Spin-Off Flotation Success


P&G Partnership Award

Tim Hammond and David Hodgson received a P&G Strategic Partnership award on behalf of Durham University at a recent European Innovation meeting in Brussels. The photograph shows (from left to right) Euan Magennis, Elena Lurieluke, Tim Hammond, David Hodgson, Michael Duncan and David Jakubovic.

 

(25 Nov 2013)


Centre of Doctoral Training Success

Many congratulations to Lian Hutchings of this department, Tom McLeish and others in the Centre for Soft Matter for winning a major grant from the EPSRC to fund a Centre of Doctoral Training (CDT). The Soft Matter and Functional Interfaces (SOFI) CDT is a Durham-led joint venture with Leeds and Edinburgh Universities and numerous industrial partners. The grant will fund 5 cohorts of 16 PhD students per year and the CDT has a total value of around £10 million with EPSRC, University and Industrial contributions. 

(22 Nov 2013) » More about Centre of Doctoral Training Success


Bnar Ahmed wins RSC poster award

Ms. Bnar Ahmed a 3rd year PhD student working with Dr Steven Cobb and Prof. Karl Coleman recently won first prize for her poster presentation at the annual RSC Protein and Peptide Science Group Early Stage Researchers meeting. The meeting in Durham was attended by over 50 peptide chemists and biochemists from all over the UK. 

(19 Nov 2013)


Industrially sponsored prizes from Infineum awarded to second-year Chemists

Twenty five undergraduate chemists were awarded a set of OUP Primers on Tuesday 22 October by Professor John SO Evans, Head of Department, and Professor Colin D Bain.

(14 Nov 2013) » More about Industrially sponsored prizes from Infineum awarded to second-year Chemists


Spin-off Graphene Firm to Float

Manufacturer Applied Graphene Materials is to float on the Alternative Stock Market to raise about £10M and fund its development to increase graphene production at Wilton. A founder member of this spin-off company is Professor Karl Coleman of this department. 

(15 Oct 2013) » More about Spin-off Graphene Firm to Float


Glassblowing Star

Congratulations to Aaron Brown on winning this year's Hampshire Trophy in a competition for glassblowers with up to seven years' experience organised by the British Society of Scientific Glassblowers. He entered one set piece of apparatus (McLeod gauge) and one free choice item (multi-surface coil condenser) in August. 

(5 Oct 2013)


Chemistry PhD Student awarded RSC Westminister Fellowship

Jack Rowbotham (PhD student jointly working between the Dyer+Greenwell groups in Chemistry) co-funded by DEI and CPI, has been awarded a Royal Society of Chemistry Westminster Fellowship. This award enables the recipient to work for three months in the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (POST) with the responsibility of keeping members of both houses of parliament informed on matters of current scientific importance.

Jack will take part in the writing of concise, peer reviewed reports (POSTnotes) as well as providing technical assistance to relevant select committees as they go about their enquiries. 

(30 Sep 2013)


Bethany Harriss wins National Award as Best Chemistry Student

Congratulations to Bethany Harriss on winning the 2013 Science, Engineering & Technology (SET) award for the Best Chemistry Student of the year which was sponsored by Shell. SET Awards are Europe's most important awards for science undergraduates and recognise the "exceptional achievements of both students and universities". Bethany's prize was based on her 4th year M. Chem. project on "Preparation and characterisation of pharmaceutical cocrystals" which was supervised by Dr Ivana Evans. Bethany presented her work to an academic judging panel in London on 26th September and received her award at a gala dinner that evening.

(27 Sep 2013) » More about Bethany Harriss wins National Award as Best Chemistry Student


Durham Chemistry tops the tables!

Durham Chemistry is delighted to have moved up to 2nd place in the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2014. This position reflects our high scores for student satisfaction and graduate prospects, and the academic quality of our students. Durham Chemistry continues to recruit some of the most highly qualified students in the country, and produces highly employable graduates who enjoy their time at university.

(27 Sep 2013) » More about Durham Chemistry tops the tables!


Casey Lam wins Top Regional Award

Casey Lam, a postgraduate researcher in the Chemistry department, was the overall winner with her business ‘Top Hat Teacakes’ at The North East Regional Blueprint Business Planning and Creation Competition. 

(24 Sep 2013) » More about Casey Lam wins Top Regional Award


Poster prize for Joe Ridout

Joe Ridout was awarded the CCDC European Crystallographic Association Poster Prize at the ECM conference in Warwick. His poster was entitled “Kinetic Control of High-Pressure Crystallisation: Rates of Compression” and described how varying the rate of compression of a liquid can produce different crystalline forms. Joe is supervised by Ehmke Pohl and Judith Howard with Sally Price and Louise Price at UCL as computational collaborators.

(24 Sep 2013)


Chemists achieve academic excellence awards

Congratulations to Alexander Boddy (M. Chem. year 2), Florence Gregson (year 4) and Jonathan Warby (year 3) who have been awarded one of the prestigious Vice-Chancellor’s Scholarships for Academic Excellence. These are the highest awards for academic excellence at undergraduate level at Durham University, and it’s great that three have been won by Chemistry’s students.

(23 Sep 2013)


DFT2013 Conference

The 15th International Conference on Density Functional Theory and its Applications (DFT2013) took place in the Calman Learning Centre and Earth Science Rooms in Durham, from 09-13 September 2013. This is the latest in a series of biennial conferences, which have taken place most recently in Brussels, Geneva, Amsterdam, Lyon, and Athens. 

(18 Sep 2013) » More about DFT2013 Conference


Durham MChem student shortlisted for prize in National Competition

Bethany Harriss has been selected as one of three top Chemistry students in the SET (Science, Engineering and Technology) Awards 2013 national competition. Beth graduated this year as the top MChem student. She did her fourth year project with Ivana Evans entitled "Preparation and characterisation of pharmaceutical cocrystals" and the project synopsis was entered into the competition.

(4 Sep 2013)


Durham Chemistry Graduate is Big Cheese

Durham Chemistry graduate Matthew Feroze has won the title of France's most talented cheesemonger by winning the Concours National des Fromagers at the Salon Mondiale de Restauration et Hôtellerie during a two year break from his career as a government accountant. The competition involved the blind tasting of cheeses, cutting cheeses to specified weights, and the presentation of a cheese platter he had selected and matured himself, where he included two English cheeses.

Matt graduated with an MChem from Durham University in 2004, completing his final year project with Prof. Paul Low. 

(30 Aug 2013) » More about Durham Chemistry Graduate is Big Cheese


Excellent Student Feedback

Durham Chemistry received excellent feedback from its graduating students in the 2013 National Student Survey (NSS) with scores increasing across the board.


More of our students responded to the survey than from any other Chemistry Department in the country. 97% of them reported that their course was intellectually stimulating and 95% felt that staff were accessible and that there was good access to specialised equipment, IT and Library support.

(15 Aug 2013)


Staff-Student Cricket Match

The annual Chemistry Staff-Student Cricket Match on 31st July was played at the Durham Cricket Club ground accompanied with a barbecue party for everyone from the department. Thanks to Ffion Abraham and her barbecue team for organising a fantastic day. The staff team won by 9 wickets in achieving the 69-run target in 12 overs.

(15 Aug 2013)


Casey Lam awarded enterpreneur prize

Congratulations to Casey Lam, a Durham University chemist, after being crowned winner of a challenge to find Tyneside's next big entrepreneur. She runs a business, TopHat Teacakes, after developing a taste for baking teacakes. For more details on her award see

http://www.thejournal.co.uk/business/business-news/tophat-teacakes-boss-takes-journals-5671090

The TopHatTeacakes webpage can be found at

http://www.tophatteacakes.co.uk/

(7 Aug 2013)


Electroanalysis at the Nanoscale

Faraday Discussions, dating back to 1947 provide a unique platform for lively discussions on specialized topics, by all participants. Faraday Discussions 164 ‘Electroanalysis at the Nanoscale’ - was held at Durham University on 1-3 July, in the same spirit, attended by internationally renowned electrochemists from across the globe. 

Prof Joe Wang (University of California at San Diego, US) was awarded the RSC Spiers Memorial Award. He gave a fascinating insight into the future of nano propelling machines.

(10 Jul 2013) » More about Electroanalysis at the Nanoscale


Poster award for Anne Krol

Congratulations to Anne Krol, for a poster prize on her fourth year project on ‘Penetration of Gold Nanoparticles into Bilayer and Monolayer Modified Electrodes’ at the recent Faraday Discussions meeting in Durham.

(10 Jul 2013)


Mapping receptors in the brain

Neil Sim, Robert Pal, David Parker, Anurag Mishra and their German collaborators have synthesised a series of novel MRI contrast agents that can pinpoint N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors in vitro, effectively mapping the location of these receptors in real time. The glutamate receptor NMDA plays a key role in memory, learning and neurotransmission. Misregulation and overstimulation of NMDA receptors has been associated with Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases. 

(3 Jul 2013) » More about Mapping receptors in the brain


Chemistry celebrates the success of the class of 2013

Over 100 Chemistry students, BSc, MChem, MSc and Ph.D. cohorts, were awarded their degrees at a ceremony on 26 June.

Prior to the ceremony, staff celebrated the success of their undergraduate and postgraduate students, together with their family and friends, at a graduation reception held in the Department.

(27 Jun 2013) » More about Chemistry celebrates the success of the class of 2013


Natural Sciences Awards

Congratulations to Katherine Rumble, Bethany Orrell and Jack Panter for the 4th year MSci, 3rd year BSc and the Michael Weston (Grey College 2nd Year) awards respectively.

(26 Jun 2013)


Laser investigation on historic documents

Prof Andrew Beeby, Dr Kate Nicholson and Andrew Duckworth are using Raman spectroscopy to investigate the materials used in treasured manuscripts linked to the Lindisfarne Gospels written in the 6th - 12th centuries. Andy Duckworth (right) takes the ancient rumour that only those properly attired should handle manuscripts to heart! These include books belonging to Bede and Bishop Cosin as well as the first written history of Durham reported by Symeon. For more details of this exciting project at the University Library on Palace Green see...

http://durhamgospels.blogspot.co.uk/

(25 Jun 2013)


Undergraduate Cover Star

Congratulations to Jim Madge and Ivana Evans whose research has been highlighted on the front cover of this month’s Chemistry of Materials. In the related paper they use a combination of diffraction, ab-initio molecular dynamics simulations and quasi-elastic neutron scattering to probe the structure and the mechanism of oxide ion migration in Bi26Mo10O69. Oxide ion conductors are of importance, inter alia, as electrolytes in fuel cells. The work revealed the importance of short-lived MoO5 groups and their dynamic reorientation in the ionic conductivity pathway. Jim undertook his portion of the work during a summer research internship between the 3rd and 4th years of his M. Chem. degree based at the ILL in Grenoble. The work was a collaboration between Durham, the ILL and the University of Sydney.

(24 Jun 2013) » More about Undergraduate Cover Star


Science Lecturer of the Year

Professor Mark Wilson was voted Durham Students' Union lecturer of the year for science 2013, and received his award at the recent DSU awards ceremony.

(22 Jun 2013)


Rising Stars

Congratulations to Sophie Scott, Beth Orrell and Sarah Armitage who represented the Department at this year’s “Rising Stars” research symposium on Thursday 20th June. Sophie and Beth are graduating this year from the BSc programme and Sarah from the M. Chem. programme.

(21 Jun 2013) » More about Rising Stars


Honorary Degree for David Phillips CBE

Professor David Phillips is awarded a honorary degree from Durham University this year. David, born and bred in the North of England, is one of the UK’s leading scientists. He grew up in South Shields, South Tyneside and was educated at the South Shields Grammar-Technical School for Boys.

(20 Jun 2013) » More about Honorary Degree for David Phillips CBE


Martin Dracinsky wins prestigious Czech Award

Congratulations to Martin Dracinsky who has been awarded Otto Wichterle Award. The Otto Wichterle Award (named after a Czech chemist, best known for his invention of modern soft contact lenses) is an honour given by the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic to stimulate and encourage selected, exceptionally outstanding, promising young scientists for their remarkable contributions to the advancement of scientific knowledge in a given area of science. Martin is currently a Marie Curie Fellow in Durham Chemistry, in the solid-state NMR group. His research interests include NMR spectroscopy, molecular modelling and properties of modified components of nucleic acids.

(20 May 2013)


Durham Lectures 2013

The department is delighted to welcome Prof. Dr. Peter H. Seeberger from the Max Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces in Potsdam as the 2013 Durham Lecturer.

Further details of the Durham Lectures for 2013 can be found here.

(14 May 2013)


Chemistry department ranked 3rd in UK

Our chemistry department has retained its high ranking in the Independent Complete University Guide for 2014. 

The 2014 rankings are at: 

http://www.thecompleteuniversityguide.co.uk/league-tables/rankings?s=Chemistry

(13 May 2013)


SCIENCE GOES LIVE TODAY (3 May 2013)

Have a look at
 

(3 May 2013)


Outreach in China

Prof John Evans and Dr Ivana Evans have recently spent 10 days in China visiting university and industrial partners where we have strong teaching and research links. 


During the trip they also visited Harrow School Beijing where John gave a lecture to A-level students about modern chemical research and how it relates to material on the A-level curriculum. The students contributed through a team demonstration of the kind of phonon modes that can lead to unusual physical properties in materials. 


(30 Apr 2013) » More about Outreach in China


Teaching Excellence Award for Jacquie Robson

Congratulations to Jacquie Robson who has been awarded a Durham University “Excellence in Learning and Teaching” award for her work in the department. Jacquie has developed a number of new activities and experiments for the first year laboratory course as part of the RELITE project, and she recently worked with the team that devised new induction processes for first year students. She is the department mentor for new first year students and works closely with students needing assistance in making the transition from school to university studies.

(26 Apr 2013)


Double Success for Durham Chemists with Prestigious Fellowships

Two Durham University Chemists have gained prestigious Ramsay Fellowships.

Dr Stephen Butler, a post-doctoral researcher in Durham was educated at Warwick and Sydney Universities before moving to Durham in 2011 to work with Prof David Parker FRS in the Chemistry Department. He plans to explore the selective recognition of phosphate species in solution using optical methods.

Dr Gareth Roberts obtained his PhD from Durham University in 2010 and was the first PhD student to work with Dr Jan Verlet in the Chemistry Department. He is currently working at Warwick University and will take up his Fellowship in Bristol, examining ultrafast laser dynamics studies of DNA base pairs.

(3 Apr 2013) » More about Double Success for Durham Chemists with Prestigious Fellowships


Industrial Fellowship for Chris Greenwell

Congratulations to Dr Chris Greenwell who has been awarded a Royal Society Industry Fellowship to understand how clay minerals and clay mineral/other mineral interfaces hydrate during drilling and fracking operations. The Fellowship will last for 4 years and Chris will spend 50% of his time working with M-I SWACO (Schlumberger) on the project, making use of the world class Aberdeen Research & Technology Centre.

(3 Apr 2013) » More about Industrial Fellowship for Chris Greenwell


Welcome to Mark Miller

A warm welcome to Dr Mark Miller who is a Senior Lecturer at our department. Mark’s research interests include the simulation of soft condensed matter, self assembly, molecular and colloidal clusters and network-forming fluids; see

http://www.dur.ac.uk/chemistry/staff/profile/?id=11538

Mark willl be closely associated with Durham’s Institute for Advanced Research Computing.

(3 Apr 2013)


Prof Geoffrey Coates

Prof. Geoffrey Coates (1917–2013), who was head of Department from 1953 until 1968, passed away on 10th January. Prof Coates made enormous contributions to the Department and University during his time in Durham. He reinvigorated Durham Chemistry helping design and establish us in a then state-of-the-art building. His activities and the people he hired set the foundations for the modern Department. His monograph on organometallic compounds (Methuen, 1956) outlined the principles of the rapidly developing subject so effectively that it was followed by a second and then further substantial multi-author editions. Many of us first learnt organometallic chemistry from his texts.

(21 Feb 2013) » More about Prof Geoffrey Coates


Organic Light Award

Congratulations to Martin Bryce (Chemistry) and Andy Monkman (Physics) for a large grant award from EPSRC on high performance fluorescent devices from E-type triplet harvesting. This grant will fund two PDRAs (one based in Chemistry, one based in Physics) each for 3 years. The work will involve the synthesis of new materials, photophysical studies and device fabrication. The aim is to develop new strategies to achieve high performance organic light-emitting devices (OLEDs) and low energy organic solid-state lighting.

(28 Jan 2013) » More about Organic Light Award


Raman spectroscopy grant for Simon Beaumont

Congratulations to Simon Beaumont who was awarded EPSRC support for his ‘CataRaman’ project under the EPSRC First Grant scheme. The project will be focused on exploiting Total Internal Reflection (TIR) Raman spectroscopy for in situ studies of heterogeneous catalysis. This methodology, which offers a number of advantages over current alternatives, will be exploited for the first time to study reactive adsorbates under true operating conditions on specially prepared, well defined nanoparticle catalysts. 

(27 Dec 2012)


Geri Rosser awarded Communication Bursary

Congratulations to Geri Rosser (final year PhD student, Department of Chemistry), who has recently been awarded one of the ten available £100 bursaries to attend British Interactive Group conference in January 2013. The conference will give Geri the opportunity to further develop her STEM communication skills to assist her with her work as a Science Animator and in her role in the department's Outreach team. Geri works regularly with local school children to engage youngsters and to inspire them into science (particularly chemistry), and she was recently a key part of the department's team for the Celebrate Science festival, a flagship University outreach festival held each October.

(12 Dec 2012)


Karl Coleman and Durham win THE Innovation Award

Congratulations to Karl Coleman, the DBIS team, Karl’s supporters in Chemistry and Durham Graphene Science (DGS) for winning the 2012 Times Higher Education Award for “Outstanding Contribution to Innovation and Technology”. One of the judges commented that “Durham’s approach to the production of synthetic graphene will have a major impact on manufacturing and allied industries, as well as on research disciplines. It is difficult to overstate the significance of this innovation.”

(30 Nov 2012) » More about Karl Coleman and Durham win THE Innovation Award


Judith Howard talks crystallography on Radio 4

Professor Judith Howard was one of the guests on Radio 4 discussing the history of crystallography, the study of crystals and their structure with presenter Melvyn Bragg. 

The discovery in the early 20th century that X-rays could be diffracted by a crystal revolutionised our knowledge of materials. This crystal technology has touched most people's lives, thanks to the vital role it plays in diverse scientific disciplines - from physics and chemistry, to molecular biology and mineralogy. To date, 28 Nobel Prizes have been awarded to scientists working with X-ray crystallography, an indication of its crucial importance.
For more details, see
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01p0s9s

(29 Nov 2012)


Jack Robotham awarded three national presentation prizes in 2012

Jack won a prize in the poster session at the RSC Energy & Environment - Early Career Researcher Symposium, at Cranfield University, which is the third such prize this year for Jack! His poster, entitled "Seaweed and Sustainability: Biofuels from the Catalytic Pyrolysis of Macroalgae", describes Jack's recent work exploring fundamental aspects of the pyrolysis of macroalgae - a methodology that could be used to generate fuels and chemicals from this sustainable bioresource.

For more details see

http://www.dur.ac.uk/cscp/news/

(28 Nov 2012)


Phil Souter's life saving innovation wins Economist award

Congratulations to one of our visiting Professors, Phil Souter from P&G, on winning the 2012 Economist Innovation Award for Social and Economic Innovation for the “P&G Pure Water” product for producing safe drinking water. Phil was presented with the award along with Greg Allgood of P&G at a ceremony at BAFTA on Thursday 15th November. 

(19 Nov 2012) » More about Phil Souter's life saving innovation wins Economist award


Industrially sponsored prizes from Infineum awarded to second-year Chemists

Forty undergraduate chemists were awarded a set of OUP Primers on Tuesday 06 November by Professor John SO Evans, Head of Department, and Professor Colin D Bain.

The prize, under new sponsorship from Infineum, went to the top forty students who had studied Core Chemistry 1A and Core Chemistry 1B in 2011/12, and had subsequently registered for second year Chemistry programmes.

Infineum, with whom Durham has a number of research collaborations, is a world leader in the formulation, manufacturing and marketing of petroleum additives for lubricants and fuels.

(9 Nov 2012)


Celebrate Science

Celebrate Science is a well-established University Outreach and public engagement event with activities all over the city, but with a focus on the exhibition marquee on Palace Green. Running from Tuesday 30th October to Thursday 1st November 2012, this year proved to be bigger and better than ever with over 5500 visitors to the activities, an increase of 60% from last year. The chemistry activities in the main marquee were coordinated by one of our leading chemistry Outreach practitioners, Dr Robert Pal, who was ably assisted by PhD student Geri Rosser. Geri has recently been combining her PhD studies with her role as a University Science Teaching Consultant, working to inspire and educate local secondary school students about science.

(2 Nov 2012) » More about Celebrate Science


Poster winners in Valencia

Congratulations to Dr Stephen Butler and Dr Brian McMahon for winning poster prizes at the International Conference on Coordination Chemistry in Valencia, Spain. Two poster prizes won by Durham chemists out of 900 posters is a great achievement. Both Stephen and Brian are in Professor David Parker's group.

(25 Oct 2012)


Seaweed Power

The MacroBioCrude consortium lead by Phil Dyer (Centre for Sustainable Chemical Processes, Durham Chemistry, and Royal Society Industry Fellow) supported by Mike Theodorou has received EPSRC funding (£1.6M) to support a cross-discipline project to establish an integrated supply and processing pipeline for the sustainable manufacture of  liquid hydrocarbon fuels from seaweed (or macroalgae). 

(25 Oct 2012) » More about Seaweed Power


Prof Sandford as Chair of RSC Fluorine Chemistry

Prof Graham Sandford has been elected as chair of the Fluorine Chemistry Group within the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC). See

http://www.rsc.org/Membership/Networking/InterestGroups/FluorineChemistry/Committee.asp

(24 Oct 2012)


Welcome to new academic staff

The department warmly welcomes three new members of academic staff,

Professor Ian Baxendale (Chair in Synthetic Chemistry)

Dr Simon Beaumont (Lecturer in Physical Chemistry)

Dr Sandra Engelskirchen (Lecturer in Physical Chemistry) 

(24 Oct 2012)


Chairs for Beeby, Coleman, Steel and Williams

Congratulations to Andy Beeby, Karl Coleman, Patrick Steel and Gareth Williams on their promotions to professors.

(1 Oct 2012)


TSB award for sustainable coating applications

Prof Andy Whiting (pictured) of this department and collaborators, AkzoNobel, High Force Research and Manchester University, have been awarded a large TSB grant for a three-year project on novel routes to waterborne polymers for coating applications. The key aim is the use of more efficient continuous manufactoring processes to improve air quality and reduce greenhouse gases thereby making coating manufacturing more sustainable. 

(10 Sep 2012)


Tanner Research Internships

The Department was delighted to welcome the first pair of Tanner Research Interns this summer, Jacob Grant and Gordon Hack. The internships, funded by a generous donation from a Chemistry Department Alumnus, Julian Tanner, will provide funded research experience to Durham University undergraduates in laboratories during the summer vacation for the next 3 years – enhancing their skills, experience and employability!

(7 Sep 2012) » More about Tanner Research Internships


ERC grant success for Jan Verlet

Many congratulations to Dr Jan Verlet on obtaining a prestigious ERC Starting Grant worth over £1M. This large grant will be used to study the spectroscopy, dynamics and reactivity of solvated electrons at water interfaces using both gas-phase clusters and ambient aqueous interfaces. 

(4 Sep 2012)


Rachel Daunton wins RSC prize

Congratulations to Rachel Daunton, a PhD student working under Dr Ritu Kataky, on an award for her poster at the Royal Society of Chemistry's Analytical Research Forum 2012 held in Durham this July. Her poster was titled "A Multifunctional Microgripper Capable of Simultaneous Single Cell manipulation and Associated Ion Sensing".

(4 Sep 2012)


Big Bang North East 2012

The Department of Chemistry showed their continued support of the school students' Science and Engineering competition held at Newcastle University. We held a workshop on cryochemistry and spectroscopy that was attended by about 100 school students (Alexander Dudgeon). Students were excited to hammer a rubber nail with a banana into a piece of wood!  Dr Hendrik Nahler was part of the judging team and again very impressed by the enthusiasm, inventions and knowledge shown by school students as young as 11 years old. Projects reflected the students concerns and interests e.g.,  analysing the water quality of the River Tyne or gathering forensic evidence based on lipstick marks.

(1 Aug 2012)


Chemistry celebrates the success of the class of 2012

Almost 100 Chemistry students, BSc, MChem, MSc and Ph.D. cohorts, were awarded their degrees at a ceremony on 29 June.

Prior to the ceremony, staff celebrated the success of their undergraduate and postgraduate students, together with their family and friends, at a graduation reception held in the Department. The event included some words of advice and congratulations from the Head of Department, Prof John SO Evans, and a prize-giving session with awards given to Craig Cavanagh (BP Chemicals Mastership of Chemistry prize - see photo), Emily Oldfield (Harrison-Shearer BSc prize), Lucy Hodge (Alumni Thesis prize), Gregory Newman (BP Poster Prize) and Katie Fram (industrially-sponsored Chemistry & Society poster prize).

(5 Jul 2012) » More about Chemistry celebrates the success of the class of 2012


Leverhulme Fellowship awarded to Simon Beaumont

Congratulations to Simon Beaumont, who has been working in the Department with Phil Dyer, on the award of a Leverhulme Research Fellowship to work on "Novel Spectroscopic Studies of Catalyst Surfaces under Operational Conditions".  Simon will start the fellowship in November.

(2 Jul 2012)


Reinnervate Team wins RSC Cornforth Award

Congratulations to the Reinnervate Team on winning the Royal Society of Chemistry Rita and John Cornforth award for “commercialising technology to enhance the growth of cultured cells, through a multidisciplinary collaborative partnership using novel organic and materials chemistry”. The award is made to collaborative research teams from both chemistry and the life sciences disciplines and will be collected by Prof Stefan Przyborski (pictured) on behalf of the team.

(2 Jul 2012) » More about Reinnervate Team wins RSC Cornforth Award


Successful first North East SCI symposium at Durham

Durham Chemistry Department recently hosted a Society of Chemical Industries (SCI) Young Chemists’ Panel - Undergraduate Research Symposium. The Undergraduate Symposium are run annually by the SCI at various universities through-out the UK and the event at Durham marked the first one to be held in the North East.

(25 Jun 2012) » More about Successful first North East SCI symposium at Durham


David Parker wins prestigious award

The 5th LeCoq de Boisbaudran Award will be presented at the International Conference on f Elements, ICFE-8, at Udine (Italy), August 26-31, 2012 to Professor David Parker “in view of his outstanding and far-reaching contributions to the field of bio- analyses and bio-imaging”. The award is bestowed triennially, is sponsored by a company interested in rare earths, and is given for "an outstanding and long-lasting contribution to the science and/or technology of the f-elements”.

(23 May 2012) » More about David Parker wins prestigious award


High Ranking for Chemistry


Our chemistry department is ranked 3rd in the Independent Complete University Guide for 2013.  

The rankings are linked from: 

http://www.dur.ac.uk/chemistry/undergraduate/our_department/chemistry_tops_the_tables/ 


(10 May 2012) » More about High Ranking for Chemistry


Teaching Award and Grants for Julita Gasowska

Congratulations to Julita Gasowska who has won a Durham University "Excellence in Learning and Teaching Award" for her work in creating a new ethos and introducing a set of extended project-based experiments in the 3rd year organic teaching laboratory.

(10 May 2012) » More about Teaching Award and Grants for Julita Gasowska


Thanks to John Hartwig

The prestigious Durham Lectures this year was presented by Professor John F. Hartwig between 14th to 16th May. 

(9 May 2012) » More about Thanks to John Hartwig


Powder Diffraction School at Durham

Durham Chemistry welcomed 75 delegates from around the world to the 2012 Powder Diffraction and Rietveld Refinement School.  PhD+ level students from over 25 countries spent 5 intensive days learning about all aspects of powder diffraction and advanced methods for data analysis.  Lectures were given by Jeremy Cockcroft (UCL), Andy Fitch (ESRF), Ivana Evans and John Evans (Durham).  Tutorial and practical sessions were taught by the lecturers with help from Emma McCabe, Sarah Tallentire, Andrew Tuxworth (all from Durham), Cora Lind (Toledo) and Andrew Goodwin (Oxford).

(7 Apr 2012) » More about Powder Diffraction School at Durham


Slime Zone, Amazing Materials and Light Entertainment

Chemistry's Slime Zone, Amazing Materials and Light Entertainment exhibits were seen by over 450 students from 21 schools across the North East and were extremely well received. 

Many thanks to  Dr Jacquie Robson, Dr Julita Gasowska, Katy Moss, Katharine Linton, Matthew Tate, Alexandra Tyson, Dr Robek Pal, Lucy Wilson, Joel Cockcroft, Dr Pippa Coffer, Ffion Abraham and Geraldine Rosser for the superb demonstrations carried out with wonderful energy and enthusiasm in this successful event.


(7 Apr 2012)


Frances Chadbourne shows her research to MPs

Final year PhD student Frances Chadbourne has recently presented her research at the Houses of Commons at SET for Britain. Frances, who works on an interdisciplinary project led by Steven Cobb (Chemistry) and Paul Denny (School of Medicine and Health), was selected from several hundred applicants to present her research on the neglected tropical disease Leishmaniasis.

(21 Mar 2012) » More about Frances Chadbourne shows her research to MPs


Chancellor's Medal awarded to Prof Wade

Prof. Ken Wade's many contributions to Durham Chemistry and to the University as a whole over more than 50 years have been recognised by the award of the Chancellors Medal.  The award was presented at a gala dinner in the Castle on Wednesday evening with an oration delivered by Jim Feast.   

(8 Mar 2012) » More about Chancellor's Medal awarded to Prof Wade


Dr Cobb awarded grant on peptide scaffolds

Well done to Steven Cobb for winning £125k under the EPRSC first grant scheme on "Regiospecific, Controlled Synthesis of Structurally Defined Peptide Scaffolds".

 

The funding will be used to develop novel synthetic approaches to access rigid cyclic peptide scaffolds for drug discovery programs.

(29 Feb 2012)


EPSRC Fog grant and IAAM Medal successes for Prof Badyal

Many congratulations to Jas Pal Badyal who has been awarded a significant grant from the EPSRC (£1.5 million) for a project entitled “Eco-Sustainable fog collection in arid climates”.  The work aims to try and adapt some of Nature’s tricks to harvest water in dry climates.


(29 Feb 2012) » More about EPSRC Fog grant and IAAM Medal successes for Prof Badyal


EPSRC Grant success for Emma McCabe and John Evans

Congratulations to John Evans and Emma McCabe for winning a £360k EPSRC grant in collaboration with Stewart Clark from Physics and partners from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in the US.  This grant continues earlier EPSRC-funded work on the electronic and magnetic properties of new oxychalcogenide phases for a further 3 years.

(29 Feb 2012) » More about EPSRC Grant success for Emma McCabe and John Evans


Gels and Microemulsions Grant Success

The team of Jon Steed, Sharon Cooper, Paul Hodgkinson and Judith Howard has been awarded a £683k grant on "Complementary Gel and Microemulsion Strategies for Pharmaceutical Solid Form Control". 

(29 Feb 2012) » More about Gels and Microemulsions Grant Success


Hydrogen grant success for Dr Hess

Many congratulations to Corinna Hess for a £125k first-grant success on "Ligand-Centred Mixed Valence Catalysts for Hydrogen Production".  The project centres on the development of a new class of bimetallic mixed valence catalysts, exploiting redox active ligands as electron storage sites.

(29 Feb 2012) » More about Hydrogen grant success for Dr Hess


Best PDRA Poster award at the recent Algal Biotechnology: Biofuels and Beyond conference held at UCL on the 13th February

Jack Rowbotham, Dr Li Li, and Louise Parkes from the Dyer and Greenwell groups who won the best PDRA Poster Prize at the recent Algal Biotechnology: Biofuels and Beyond conference held at UCL on the 13th February.  Clearly Jack is getting practice in early!  Click to see their winning poster entitled "Promising Catalytic Processes for the Conversion of Algae to Fuels".



(27 Feb 2012)


Chemistry Highlights in Review

News including awards and large grants concerning the Chemistry department are shown in the science faculty annual report for 2011. The annual report for 2011 is available at: http://www.dur.ac.uk/resources/science.faculty/Science_Screen.pdf

(26 Jan 2012)


Fluorine Flow Chemistry

Professor Graham Sandford and Jessica Breen, a PhD student, demonstrate the batch and continuous flow fluorinations with elemental fluorine in a movie at

http://www.beilstein.tv/tvpost/fluorination-in-flow/

(26 Jan 2012)


Mark Wilson appointed as new Head of Section

Mark Wilson has taken over as head of the physical teaching section from Jeremy Hutson, who has acted in this role since 2002.  We thank Jeremy for the enormous contributions he's made to the Department as section head and, of course, to Mark for taking on the role.

(26 Jan 2012)


A Centre of Excellence with P&G, CPI and Peerless

Durham Chemistry and Physics Departments have recently initiated a £14M research project with Procter and Gamble, CPI and Peerless systems under project "CEMENT" - a Centre of Excellence in Methods and New Technologies for Surface Modification and Cleaning. 

Prof. John Evans from Durham said "What's particularly exciting about the project is the way in which we can bring a team of academics from different disciplines together to tackle projects which are extremely challenging, scientifically fascinating, but also have significant real-world impact." 

(20 Jan 2012) » More about A Centre of Excellence with P&G, CPI and Peerless


P2i wins Best Use of Technology Award

P2i, which was set up to commercialise the super-repellent nanocoatings invented in Jas Pal Badyal's research group, has recently won the "Best Use of Technology" prize at the UK Fast Growth Business Awards. 

(15 Dec 2011) » More about P2i wins Best Use of Technology Award


Durham Graphene Science named as a Future-50 star

Karl Coleman's spin out company, Durham Graphene Science, has been named as one of "Britain's most innovative, creative and disruptive young brands". See the story at http://realbusiness.co.uk/news/future-50-star-durham-graphene-science

(21 Nov 2011)


Graham Sandford wins a Blueprint Knowledge Transfer Award

Congratulations to Graham Sandford for Brock Fine Chemicals (http://www.brockfinechemicals.com/) in winning Blueprint Knowledge Transfer Awards. Awards in the previous two years were won by Karl Coleman for Durham Graphene Science (http://durhamgraphene.com/default.aspx) and David Parker and Robek Pal for FScan (http://www.fscanltd.com/default.html).

(21 Nov 2011)


Steven Cobb and his team awarded a Gates Foundation grant

An interdisciplinary research team led by Dr Steven Cobb, involving the University of Manchester and Imperial College London, has been awarded a Grand Challenges Explorations Grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The project titled "Something from Nothing: Developing Technologies for Energy Recovery from Sewage Waste" will design a novel technology that will have the ability to convert fecal sludge into hydrogen, a usable fuel source.

(21 Nov 2011) » More about Steven Cobb and his team awarded a Gates Foundation grant


Team led by Mark Wilson awarded substantial EPSRC funding

Prof Mark Wilson has won substantial funding from EPSRC for a project entitled "Chromonic phase behaviour based on planar discs functionalized with EO (ethylenoxyl) groups". Mark has led a team from Durham Chemistry, Hull Chemistry and Manchester Chemical Engineering. The project also brings in expertise from groups in Bologna, Malaysia, Braga, Fujifilm and Kent State – a strong interdisciplinary, international team.

(21 Nov 2011)


Jessica Breen wins prize at RSC Fluorine meeting

Well done to Jessica Breen on being awarded a prize for her oral presentation at the RSC postgraduate Fluorine meeting held at the University of Aberdeen on 8-9th September. Her talk was entitled 'The fluorination of aromatic and heterocyclic systems'.

(4 Oct 2011)


50 years in the Chemistry Building – a weekend of science and friendship

Chemistry marked 50 years in its current building on 23rd and 24th September 2011 with an alumni reunion to celebrate the many achievements over that period.  We were delighted to welcome around 400 attendees, who had associations with the Department dating back to 1950!

(30 Sep 2011) » More about 50 years in the Chemistry Building – a weekend of science and friendship


Rachel Carr and Katy Moss receive Demonstrator Awards

Congratulations to Rachel Carr and Katie Moss who have been nominated to receive Postgraduate Demonstrator Awards of £100 for their exceptional contributions within the teaching laboratories.

(30 Sep 2011)


Richard Massey wins prize at RSC Physical Organic Group Meeting 2011

Congratulations to Richard Massey, a Ph.D. chemist with Dr AnnMarie O'Donoghue, on winning a prize for best oral presentation at the RSC Physical Organic Group Postgraduate Meeting held at AstraZeneca in Macclesfield on 14th September.

His talk was on 'Proton Transfer Reactions of N-Heterocyclic Carbenes' which involved pKa measurements of around 20 triazolium ions from the kinetics of deuterium exchange. Triazolium ions are used as catalysts for many reactions.

(20 Sep 2011)


A level results produce a bumper crop of Durham chemists

The publication of A-level results on 18th August means that Durham Chemistry can confirm the places for a record 129 students who will start their study of Chemistry in October 2011.

(30 Aug 2011) » More about A level results produce a bumper crop of Durham chemists


Student Experience in Bosnia Herzegovina

Abigail Hallowes, a Durham Chemistry (industrial route) student, experienced an industrial placement in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

See http://www.aluminij.ba/en/news/319-two-students-european-union-two-week-summer-practice-aluminij for details.

(30 Aug 2011)


Enthusiastic Durham Chemistry students more satisfied with their stimulating course

 The results of the 2011 National Student Survey were published today and show that 90% of Durham Chemistry students are satisfied overall with the quality of their course, an increase from the 2010 survey. 97% of Durham Chemistry students said that their course was intellectually stimulating, and 96% of students were satisfied that they were able to access specialised equipment, facilities or rooms and general IT resources when necessary.
 

(17 Aug 2011) » More about Enthusiastic Durham Chemistry students more satisfied with their stimulating course


Retirement of Jimmy Lincoln

Jimmy Lincoln started training as a junior technician in the 1st year teaching lab in the Chemistry Department in 1962. He worked as a research technician for several research groups in the inorganic section.

(12 Aug 2011) » More about Retirement of Jimmy Lincoln


The Big Bang North East 2011

More than 100 school students witnessed Oliver Willis and Alexander Dudgeon, demonstrating exciting chemistry experiments from 'Spectroscopy in a Suitcase' and beyond at 'The Big Bang North East'. Valentina Erastova and Dr Hendrik Nahler acted as judges (70 in total) at the event and were impressed with the enthusiasm and great ideas of the school students.

(12 Aug 2011) » More about The Big Bang North East 2011


Durham Lectures 2011

The Durham Lectures for 2011 were presented by Professor Jacob Israelachvili FRS (University of Santa Barbara). Over a series of three lectures between 21st and 23rd June 2011, Prof. Israelachvili gave a fascinating account of the chemistry and physics of soft matter at interfaces and discussed cutting-edge scienctific issues with several staff and postgraduate students.

(11 Aug 2011) » More about Durham Lectures 2011


Dr Andres Goeta

We're sorry to announce that Dr Andres Goeta died suddenly on Friday 29th July.  Andres was a highly valued colleague and friend to all in the Department.  He was a talented scientist, excellent teacher and generous and warm-hearted person.  He will be sorely missed. 

(10 Aug 2011) » More about Dr Andres Goeta


Durham University spin-out company reinnervate wins international technology award

Reinnervate, an innovative biotechnology company founded by Professor Stefan Przyborski of Durham University's School of Biological and Biomedical Sciences, is delighted to announce that alvetex®, its breakthrough 3D cell structure technology, is among the winners of the prestigious 49th Annual R&D 100 Awards.


(9 Aug 2011) » More about Durham University spin-out company reinnervate wins international technology award


Thomas Graham prize for Colin Bain

Congratulations to Prof Colin Bain who was awarded the Royal Society of Chemistry and the Society of Chemical Industry inaugural Thomas Graham award on 5th July. The Thomas Graham lectureship is awarded for contributions from mid-career academics in the areas of surface and colloid science.

(8 Aug 2011)


Prof. Ken Waugh appointed Visiting Chair

Prof. Ken Waugh (Emeritus Prof. University of Manchester; Consultant Davy Process Technology) has recently been awarded a visiting chair in the Chemistry Department at Durham University in conjunction with the Department's Centre for Sustainable Chemical Processes (CSCP).


For just over 20 years Ken was a Company Research Associate in heterogeneous catalysis with ICI. Then from 1992 Ken held a chair in physical chemistry/heterogeneous catalysis at UMIST before subsequently becoming Emeritus Professor of Physical Chemistry at the University of Manchester in 2002. Ken has an extremely strong track record in the area of heterogeneous catalysis and catalyst characterisation with long-established links to industry (ICI, BP, DPT, JM, etc.) as well as to other academic departments in the UK, Europe and US.

(22 Jul 2011)


Chemistry celebrates the success of the class of 2011

Almost 100 Chemistry students, BSC, MChem, MSc and Ph.D. cohorts, were awarded their degrees at a ceremony on 1 July.

Prior to the ceremony, staff celebrated the success of their undergraduate and postgraduate students, together with their family and friends, at a graduation reception held in the Department. The event included some words of advice and congratulations from the Head of Department, Prof John SO Evans, and a prize-giving session with awards given to Ben Monks (BP Chemicals Mastership of Chemistry prize), Vicky Chang (Harrison-Shearer BSc prize), Michael Parkin (Alumni Thesis prize) and Charlotte Greenhalgh (industrially-sponsored Chemistry & Society poster prize).

(18 Jul 2011) » More about Chemistry celebrates the success of the class of 2011


Rui Campos and Alice Delcourt Lancon win prizes at RHINE 2011

Congratulations to Rui Campos and Alice Delcourt Lancon, for best oral presentation and poster prizes, respectively, at  the RHINE (Robin Hood Interdisciplinary Network in Electrochemistry) PG workshop (24th June 2011) . The workshop, set up in 2006, focuses on excellence and diversity in research beyond the "natural" borders of electrochemical science and technology. This year the RHINE workshop was organised by Dr Jay Wadhawan at the University of Hull.

(28 Jun 2011)


Durham Chemistry tops employability tables

The 2012 Times Good University Guide was published on Thursday 23rd June 2011, and rates every university department on student satisfaction, research quality, entry standards and graduate prospects.

(27 Jun 2011) » More about Durham Chemistry tops employability tables


First One-Day Postgraduate Research Symposium

The Chemistry Department held its first One-day Postgraduate Research Symposium this week.  The event provided the Department's research students the opportunity to showcase the exciting, cutting-edge science that they are all undertaking as a part of their PhD studies.  The day opened with three parallel talk sessions where each of the Department's final year students gave a 15 minute oral presentation in a conference-style format, which was supported by a very lively question and answer session after each talk.  This was followed by a very animated, colourful, and enjoyable poster session (no doubt helped, in part, by a few glasses of wine!) during which all of the Department's second year PhD students very eloquently presented and defended their research to other students and members of staff.

(16 Jun 2011) » More about First One-Day Postgraduate Research Symposium


Former Durham chemistry student wins Dalton Award

Congratulations to Elizabeth New on achieving the Dalton Young Researchers Award this year. More details are found at: http://www.rsc.org/ScienceAndTechnology/Awards/DaltonYoungResearchersAward/2011winner.asp

Elizabeth did her PhD under the supervision of Professor David Parker at Durham. Read more about her experiences in Durham here: http://www.dur.ac.uk/chemistry/international/our_graduates/ 

(7 Jun 2011)


Tom McLeish elected as Fellow of the Royal Society

Congratulations to Prof Tom McLeish on his appointment as a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS).  Tom is Durham's PVC for research and holds a joint appointment in chemistry and physics.  More information about Tom's award is available at: http://www.dur.ac.uk/news/newsitem/?itemno=12099


(7 Jun 2011)


Royal Society Industry Fellowship awarded to Dr Phil Dyer

Congratulations to Dr Phil Dyer on the award of a Royal Society Industry Fellowship to carry out a project entitled "Tuned Ligand Delivery for ‘Designer’ Heterogeneous Catalyst Preparation". This fellowship will allow Phil to spend 50% of his time for the next 3 years working with Johnson Matthey Catalysts (JMC) at Billingham. 

(16 May 2011) » More about Royal Society Industry Fellowship awarded to Dr Phil Dyer


Royal Society of Chemistry Awards for Coleman, Parker and Hutson

 

Many congratulations to Dr Karl Coleman, Professors David Parker and Jeremy Hutson of this department on awards from the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC).
Karl Coleman has been awarded the RSC "Chemistry World Entrepreneur of the Year". The award is to recognise Karl's development of intellectual property around the production of graphene, and for the formation of the spin out company Durham Graphene Science Ltd, which is currently housed in Chemistry.
David Parker is the recipient of the RSC Ludwig Mond Award for "outstanding research in any aspect of inorganic chemistry". The citation is for work on the "coordination chemistry of the rare earths, leading to an understanding of the action of responsive optical and magnetic probes and the development of lanthanide complexes and conjugates for use in analysis and imaging". David was the head of the organic chemistry teaching section so winning an award in inorganic chemistry shows no such 'traditional' chemistry boundaries exist at Durham!
Jeremy Hutson has been awarded the RSC Tilden Prize and lectureship, which is awarded simply for "advances in chemistry". Jeremy's citation reads "for pioneering studies of the formation and properties of ultracold molecules, particularly the novel molecular collisions that occur in the fully quantum-mechanical regime below 1 millikelvin". Previous RSC Tilden Prize winners from the Chemistry Department at Durham include Profs Prassides, Bain, Parker, Feast and Wade.

(16 May 2011)


Chemistry Teachers Conference 17-19th April 2011

This meeting was organized jointly by the Department of Chemistry and Student Recruitment, attracting 47 A-level Chemistry teachers to the city for a 2½ day continuing professional development event. The first day was spent with presentations from University and Department recruitment staff, providing up-to-date information about University admissions policies and what is sought after in a student's personal statement and reference.  By way of refreshment delegates were entertained by a Chemistry Demonstration Lecture "A Little Light Entertainment" - which produced numerous requests for recipes for the demonstrations!

(26 Apr 2011) » More about Chemistry Teachers Conference 17-19th April 2011


Durham Schools' Science Festival

Many of the new STEM Ambassadors flew the flag for Chemistry at last week's Schools' Science Festival. The 'Amazing Materials' and 'Slime Zone' activities were very popular with the visiting Year 10 pupils from schools across the north-east. Pupils saw demonstrations of some 'Amazing' thermochromic materials, liquid crystals, shape memory wire and ferrofluid as well as a high temperature superconductor, and they were entertained by the dry ice 'foam fountain' and a number of 'magic' colour-change experiments. In the 'Slime Zone', pupils made their own non-Newtonian fluid (more commonly described as slime or goo) in a variety of colours and investigated the properties, as well as performing real hands-on testing of a variety of slimes, putties and touchable bubbles. The demonstrators proved their bravery by producing balls of fire on their hands by clever use of flammable methane gas and a water and detergent mixture. Almost 300 pupils visited one or both of the chemistry activities, and feedback was very positive. Thanks go to the demonstrators for their excellent efforts in organising and entertaining the visiting children, namely: Katy Moss, Iain Wallace, Ricardo Girling, Alistair Linsell, Mike Smith, Chris McPake, Becky Edwards and Alex Dudgeon.

Jacquie Robson and Julita Gasowska

(13 Apr 2011)


Chemistry Department hosts school pupils for a week

Two Year 10 pupils from Framwellgate School in Durham had an exciting time in the Chemistry Department when they were placed here for their work experience week. Jack Strangward and James Milne joined a number of colleagues across the Chemistry Department and helped out with a number of activities. They performed to such a high standard that they received an 'acknowledgment' in a research paper for work carried out with one research group, and they assisted the Outreach team by demonstrating some chemistry for a group of Year 10 pupils from other schools who visited the department as part of the AimHigher scheme. Jack and James's reports about their week appear below:

(5 Apr 2011) » More about Chemistry Department hosts school pupils for a week


CRB and Durham University launch medical research project

North-East specialist peptide manufacturer Cambridge Research Biochemicals (CRB) has teamed up with Durham University to carry out important health research.

CRB, which is based in Billingham, Teesside, and manufactures peptides and antibodies for use in pharmaceutical and biotechnology research across the world, is carrying out the work with Durham University as part of a twelve-month Knowledge Transfer Account (KTA) scheme funded by the EPSRC.

(24 Mar 2011) » More about CRB and Durham University launch medical research project


Chemistry Degree…What Next?

Undergraduate and postgraduate students within the department were recently given an insider's view of three different chemistry career pathways at an event supported by the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC). Case studies looking at working in industry, teaching and science publishing were presented by Dr. Richard Ward (Johnson Matthey), Dr. Jacquie Robson (RSC Teacher Fellow, Durham) and Katie Dryden-Holt (RSC, Recruitment Executive).

(8 Mar 2011) » More about Chemistry Degree…What Next?


Crystal ball gazing

The first issue of Organometallics in 2011, presents a number of perspective articles on the future of the discipline and provides a forum to discuss areas of science and technology in which organometallic systems may play a decisive role.  See Organometallics, 2011, 30 (1), pp 7 - 12 for a perspective provided by Prof Paul Low and fellow collaborators.

(4 Mar 2011)


Organometallics in the News

Artwork created by Horst Puschmann based on genuine organometallic mixed-valence complexes has been presented on the front cover in a recent issue of Organometallics..

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(4 Mar 2011) » More about Molybdenum Complexes on Organometallics Front Cover


David Parker awarded European Research Council Advanced Investigator Grant

Congratulations to Professor David Parker on gaining an European Research Council (ERC) Advanced Investigator grant to study functional coordination chemistry. The ERC award, valued at 2.5 million Euros, will be used to support 3 PDRA and 3 PhD students over the next 5 years. The project will involve active collaborations with research groups in Germany, Italy, France and Scotland.

David said:  ”Obviously, I am delighted to have gained this grant as it recognises, to a considerable extent, the skill and inspiration of current
and recent group members and our collaborators.”

(3 Feb 2011)


Nigel Clarke appointed to Chair

We are delighted to announce that Dr. Nigel Clarke has been appointed to a Chair in Condensed Matter Theory in the Department of Physics & Astronomy at the University of Sheffield from 1 February 2011.

Nigel has been at Durham since 2000 and has been a Senior Lecturer since 2006, and leads experimental and theoretical research in soft matter, particularly in polymer flow and rheology. We will miss him a great deal, but we are delighted that his distinction has been recognised in this way, and we look forward to continuing to collaborate with him.

Good luck, Nigel!

(31 Jan 2011)


Large EPSRC Grant Award on Ultracold Molecules.

Jeremy Hutson, Eckart Wrede and David Carty were awarded a multi-million pound 5-year EPSRC Programme Grant on "Microkelvin Molecules in a Quantum Array", in collaboration with Simon Cornish in the Physics Department at Durham and Ed Hinds and Mike Tarbutt at Imperial College London. The Durham share of this grant is almost 4 million pounds.

(24 Jan 2011) » More about Large EPSRC Grant Award on Ultracold Molecules.


Successful first UK-China workshop on Metals in Organic Synthesis

Prof. Todd B. Marder (Durham University, Chair of the Organising Committee), with the assistance of Prof. Jianliang Xiao (University of Liverpool), and Profs. Zhenfeng Xi (Chair), Liangbing Gan, Zhen Yang, Jianbo Wang, Zheng-jie Shi (Secretary), and Wen-Xiong Zhang (all of Peking University) organised the First RCUK China Funded UK-China Workshop on Metals in Organic Synthesis: Toward Cleaner, Greener Chemical Processes, held at Peking University, Beijing, China, from 9-13 January, 2011.

(20 Jan 2011) » More about Successful first UK-China workshop on Metals in Organic Synthesis


Ice expert, Dr Nahler, interviewed on BBC

Dr Hendrik Nahler was interviewed on the topic of ice on 8th December on BBC Radio Tees. He spoke about some unique properties of ice, explaining what makes it slippery. The slipperiness of ice cannot be explained by pressure melting or frictional heating, two common misconceptions. The water molecules at the ice surface are loosely bound and form a quasi-liquid layer, the phenomenon which makes ice slippery. The use of grit (mainly rock salt) melts ice if the temperatures do not drop too low and prevent water from freezing, a phenomenon dubbed freezing point depression. In his research lab Dr Nahler focusses on chemical reactions at ice surfaces triggered by light.

(16 Dec 2010)


Naked Scientist

Durham Chemistry's very own Dr Karl Coleman appeared on the Naked Scientist Radio show talking and answering questions on the manufacture of graphene, the subject of this year's Noble Prize in Physics. The Naked Scientists use radio, live lectures, and the Internet to strip science down to its bare essentials, and promote it to the general public. Their award winning BBC weekly radio programme, The Naked Scientists, reaches a potential audience of 6 million listeners across the east of England, and also has an international following on the web.

(16 Dec 2010) » More about Naked Scientist


Valentina Erastova wins best poster prize at 'Celebrate Science' Festival

Many congratulations to Valentina Erastova who won the prize for best poster at the ‘Celebrate Science - Past and Present’ event on 26-28th October.

(9 Nov 2010) » More about Valentina Erastova wins best poster prize at 'Celebrate Science' Festival


Blueprint and Knowledge Transfer Award goes to Dr Karl Coleman

The list of winners for this year's Blueprint Awards - the North East Universities Business Planning Awards - has been unveiled.

The Blueprint and the Knowledge Transfer Award went to Durham Graphene Science which was founded by Dr Karl Coleman, a Reader in the Chemistry Department, to develop and retail products containing graphene, an advanced carbon nanomaterial that could potentially replace carbon fibre in composites and indium tin oxide found in new plastic electronics

(22 Oct 2010) » More about Blueprint and Knowledge Transfer Award goes to Dr Karl Coleman


Durham Graphene Science

Dr Karl Coleman, a Reader in the Chemistry Department has made it into the North East Regional newspaper The Journal for his new University spin-out company Durham Graphene Science. A company set-up to commercialise new technologies, developed in his laboratories,  for the synthesis of graphene (the subject of the Nobel prize in Physics 2010).

(22 Oct 2010) » More about Durham Graphene Science


Chemistry in its Element: Series 2 Podcast on Cisplatin

Prof. Jonathan Steed has just published a podcast as part of the RSC series Chemistry in its Element on the anti-cancer drug Cisplatin.

This second series of podcasts focuses on fascinating molecules and complements the first series which covered the elements themselves. Fronted by the well-known broadcaster Johnny Ball, Chemistry in its Element is an accessible, often quirky, look at some of the more interesting features, history and impact of chemicals in the world around us. Steed's take on Cisplatin - can be downloaded at http://www.rsc.org/chemistryworld/podcast/CIIEcompound.asp

(14 Oct 2010) » More about Chemistry in its Element: Series 2 Podcast on Cisplatin


Dr Victoria Money awarded a prestigious RS Fellowship

Dr. Victoria Money has joined the department as a Royal Society University Research Fellow.  Victoria will use protein crystallography and other biophysical techniques to improve our understanding of human respiratory syncytial virus (hRSV).  hRSV causes normally mild but potentially life threatening respiratory infections and is a member of the viral order Mononegavirales.  The World Health Organisation has identified hRSV and other members of this viral order, such as parainfluenza virus and the measles and mumps viruses, as being the cause of a serious health and economic burden worldwide.  In addition to these better known threats hRSV is closely related to newly emergent viruses such as Nipah, Hendra and Ebola.  It is thought that these viruses may provide the next serious health threat to face humankind.

(11 Oct 2010) » More about Dr Victoria Money awarded a prestigious RS Fellowship


Richard Delley wins poster prize at RSC Physical Organic Group Meeting 2010

Richard Delley, a Ph.D. student with Drs Hodgson and O'Donoghue, won the poster competition at the recent RSC Physical Organic Group's Residential Meeting at Gregynog (September 28-30). Richard's poster was on 'Kinetics Studies on the Hydrolysis of Phosphorus (V) Chlorides'.

(11 Oct 2010)


Congratulations Professor Low!

Congratulations to Paul Low on being promoted to a Chair.

This is in recognition of Professor Low's work in the areas of synthesis and characterisation molecular materials, coupled with identification of structure-property relationships in those systems.

More information on Professor Low's research is available on his personal web pages.

(1 Oct 2010)


Dalton Discussion 12: Catalytic C-H and C-X Bond Activation (DD12)

The Department and University hosted the 12th Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) Dalton Discussion (DD12) conference on 13 - 15 September 2010. DD12 was the first Dalton Discussion to have been jointly organised by the Organic and Dalton divisions of the RSC.  The topic of this meeting was the applications of late metal catalysed cross-coupling reactions, involving the activation of C-X (X = halogen) or, more recently, C-H bonds, which are now common place in the synthesis of natural products, therapeutic agents, biological probes, and advanced materials. It is clear that inorganic and organometallic coordination chemistry, theoretical and kinetic studies, new synthetic methodologies and applications are playing a key role in this popular area of research.

(30 Sep 2010) » More about Dalton Discussion 12


RSC Chemistry Teacher Fellow for 2010/2011

Jacquie Robson has joined the department as a Royal Society of Chemistry Teacher Fellow for 2010/2011, Jacquie will be looking at using context and problem-based learning methods in undergraduate teaching, as well as other strategies to develop students' problem-solving skills.

(9 Sep 2010) » More about RSC Chemistry Teacher Fellow for 2010/2011


NESIP 33

Durham Chemistry Department and Grey College hosted the 33rd Annual North East Schools-Industry Partnership (NESIP) Project Week from Sunday 4th July to Friday 9th July. Students from various schools in the North East accompanied by their teachers spent a week in the Department undertaking research projects supplied by both local industrial and academic partners, including Davy Process Technology, Corus, MSD Billingham, Shasun, Sunderland University and Durham University. The projects undertaken ranged from assessing lime quality for steel making to monitoring pollution with spider webs. Several projects were supplied by Dr Richard Thompson, Dr Lars-Olof Palsson, Dr Mark Skipsey, Dr Aileen Congreve and Prof Stefan Przyborski of this department.

(27 Jul 2010) » More about NESIP 33


USIC 2010

The Universities of Scotland Inorganic Chemistry Conference, USIC 2010, took place in Durham on Thursday and Friday, 8th-9th July. This was the first time that the USIC conference has been held outside Scotland. The successful meeting was superbly organized by a team of postgraduate students from Durham University Chemistry Department (Peter Harrisson, Rachel Harder, Peter Harvey, Chris Herron, Winnie Man and Louise Parkes) working together with Dr Philippa Monks.

(27 Jul 2010) » More about USIC 2010


Durham Scientist Elected Fellow of the Royal Society

Professor Jeremy Hutson of the Durham Chemistry and Physics Departments has been elected a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS), the UK's national academy of science. The Royal Society is made up of the most eminent scientists, engineers and technologists from the UK and Commonwealth.

(21 May 2010) » More about Durham Scientist Elected Fellow of the Royal Society


Chemistry in its Element - podcast (niobium)

Prof Jon Steed has just published a new podcast, this time on niobium, as part of the Royal Society of Chemistry's podcast series, Chemistry in its Element.

(6 May 2010) » More about Chemistry in its Element - podcast (niobium)


Chembridge United win University five-a-side Cup Final

The Department of Chemistry's five-a-side team, Chembridge United, beat the ITS by six goals to one in a thrilling final at Maiden Castle, to the delight of the squad members and supporters alike.

Some good play, and a glaring miss from ITS, saw Chembridge take a four goal lead before an unlucky deflection off one of their players led to a half-time score of 4 - 1. A brace of goals in the second half enabled a few tactical substitutions to be made and there was to be no way back for the opposing team.

The team were incredibly grateful to all of their supporters for turning up and cheering on the team.

The team was: R Carnachan, M Smith, C Fleming, S Ramsey, J Walton with substitutes of: I Johnson (on for C Fleming), K Dillon (on for M Smith), S Zheng (not used)

 Goals: M Smith (2), J Walton (2), S Ramsey, C Fleming

(5 May 2010)


Chemistry @ Durham Science Festival

A group of Chemistry students, led by Julita Gasowska, contributed two exhibits to the Durham Science Festival this April. The Chemistry demonstrations were Amazing Materials (Alistair Linsell, Ricardo Girling, Kirsten Chalmers and

Andy Henderson) and Colour Chemistry (Ben Smith, Irene Georgiou, James Walton, David Smith and Peter Harvey). Good fun was had by all, according to the reports in the local press:

http://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/news/8110740.Appliance_of_science_to_help_youngsters/

(5 May 2010)


RSC awards for Chemistry Professors

Prof Kosmas Prassides has been awarded the RSC Tilden Prize and Prof Jon Steed the RSC Corday-Morgan Prize.

(5 May 2010) » More about RSC awards for Chemistry Professors


Durham Chemist wins Salters' Graduate Prize

The Department of Chemistry is pleased to announce that Ruth Poultney has been awarded one of the Salters' Graduate Prizes for 2010.

(26 Apr 2010) » More about Durham Chemist wins Salters' Graduate Prize


Humboldt Prize Winners

Professors Jeremy Hutson and Todd Marder  have recently won the prestigious Alexander von Humboldt Prizes. The Humboldt Prize, also known as the Humboldt Research Award, is Germany's highest research award to internationally renowned scientists and scholars. Jeremy and Todd will make extended research visits to Germany, spread over several years, as part of their prizes.

(23 Apr 2010) » More about Humboldt Prize Winners


Powder Diffraction and Rietveld Refinement School 2010

From Sunday 18th April to Thursday 23rd April Durham Chemistry and Van Mildert College hosted the 5th School  on Powder Diffraction and Rietveld Refinement.  Delegates from a range of disciplines (Chemistry, Physics, Earth Sciences, Pharmacy, Industry, Geography and Engineering) from universities and countries around the world gathered to learn about modern methods for collecting and analysing powder diffraction data - one of the key techniques for probing the structure of a range of materials, and hence understanding and exploiting their physical properties.

(23 Apr 2010) » More about Powder Diffraction and Rietveld Refinement School 2010


Ultra Cold Control?

In an article published in this month’s Nature Physics http://www.nature.com/nphys/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nphys1533.html, Durham Chemistry professor Jeremy Hutson and Jesus Aldegunde with the experimental cold molecules group in Innsbruck report the production of an ultracold and dense sample of molecules in a single hyperfine level of the rovibronic ground state.  Each molecule is individually trapped in the motional ground state of an optical lattice well. This will result in determination of the collision properties of ground-state molecules in a fully state-selective way with precision measurements.

(9 Apr 2010) » More about Ultra Cold Control?


Jonathan Steed named as new editor of Chem. Comm.

Professor Jonathan Steed has been named as the new UK Associate Editor for the Royal Society of Chemistry flagship journal Chemical Communications. Chemical Communications has an ISI impact factor of 5.34 making it one of the highest cited primary journals in the discipline. Professor Steed will be accepting manuscripts to the Durham office from mid March 2010 and particularly welcomes submissions in the area of supramolecular chemistry, crystal engineering and soft materials chemistry”

(3 Mar 2010)


BiotechnologyYES

Congratulations to Jonathan Foster who was part of a team of Durham students who picked up the prize for the best presentation in the 2009 BiotechnologyYES competition.

(18 Dec 2009) » More about BiotechnologyYES


The New Victorians

Ritu Kataky has appeared in a recent article entitled "The New Victorians" in the Times Magazine.

(14 Dec 2009) » More about The New Victorians


Durham Chemist wins Salters' Graduate Prize

The Department of Chemistry is pleased to announce that Christine Wheeler has been awarded one of the Salters' Graduate Prizes for 2009.

(25 Nov 2009) » More about Durham Chemist wins Salters' Graduate Prize


Chancellor visits Chemistry

The Department was extremely pleased to welcome the University's Chancellor, Bill Bryson, to Chemistry for a tour of research and teaching facilities, and to meet with many of its members.

(19 Nov 2009) » More about Chancellor visits Chemistry


Postgraduate Recruitment Fair

The Annual Postgraduate recruitment fair occurred on 18th Nov. This was a successful and well-attended event where all of the Academic Staff discussed available research projects with prospective Postgraduate Students across the chemical sciences.

(19 Nov 2009) » More about Postgraduate Recruitment Fair


Louise Parkes wins prize for best presentation at USIC 2009

Louise Parkes won the prize for the best oral presentation at the 2009 Universities of Scotland Inorganic Chemistry (USIC) meeting held at Heriot-Watt University, for a talk entitled "Exploring new luminescent complexes containing quinoline ligands and 6-membered chelating units".

(23 Sep 2009) » More about Louise Parkes wins prize for best presentation at USIC 2009


Paula Lopes wins poster prize at Electrochem 2009

Congratulations to Paula Lopes on winning second prize for the student poster competition at Electrochem 2009 (Faraday Division).

The conference was held at the University of Manchester, 16-17 Sept 2009 and encompassed all aspects of electrochemistry from clean energy to materials degradation, nanoscale applications, sensors, to electrochemistry under non-conventional conditions.

Paula’s poster was on ‘Chiral transfer at a micro liquid-liquid interface’

(22 Sep 2009)


Dan Smith receives prize for best student talk

Dan Smith won the prize for the best student talk at the 2009 UK RSC Main Group Chemistry meeting held at the University of Manchester, for a talk entitled "N-Phosphino pyridyl imines: flexible, multi-functional reagents".

(21 Sep 2009)


Chemistry in its Element – podcast

A Durham academic, Prof. Jonathan Steed, is the latest in a long series of experts to immortalise one of the chemical elements in the Royal Society of Chemistry’s Chemistry in its Element podcast series. The series, fronted by the well-known broadcaster Johnny Ball, is an accessible, often quirky, look at some of the more interesting features, history and impact of the chemical elements. Steed’s take on the element ruthenium – an element reserved for the connoisseur – can be downloaded at http://www.rsc.org/chemistryworld/podcast/element.asp

(1 Sep 2009)


Smart Supramolecular Gels

In an article published in this month’s Nature Chemistry http://www.nature.com/nchem/journal/v1/n6/abs/nchem.283.html , Durham Chemistry professor Jonathan Steed and co-worker Gareth Lloyd highlight the emerging science of ion-tunable gels, jelly-like materials with switchable flow properties that have interesting potential application in drug formulation and delivery. The overview is based on the Steed group's earlier work published in the journal Chemical Communications last year (http://www.rsc.org/publishing/journals/CC/article.asp?doi=b804259d).

(1 Sep 2009)


A-level successes give record first year class

A-level results were published last Thursday and students hoping to study Chemistry at Durham next year have been very successful in meeting their offers. With the additional student numbers announced by the government in STEM subjects we will be admitting a record number of Chemistry students this October. Congratulations to those who have secured their place

(25 Aug 2009)


Durham Chemistry welcomes new Head of Department

The Department is delighted to welcome Professor John Evans as the new Chairman from 01 August 2009 for three years.

John joined the department in 1998 from a prestigious '1851 Research Fellowship' at Oxford University, following a successful PDRA at Oregon State University, USA. John won the RSC Meldola Medal in 1997, was promoted to Reader at Durham in 2003 and to his current Chair of Inorganic and Solid State Chemistry in 2007.

We wish John a successful and enjoyable chairmanship and offer him all our collegiate support.

(1 Aug 2009) » More about Durham Chemistry welcomes new Head of Department


Juho Lintuvuori awarded the Skinner Poster Prize at Faraday Discussion 144

Congratulations to Juho Lintuvuori on winning the Skinner prize for the best student poster at Faraday Discussion 144 (beating off strong competition from 50 posters from Europe and North America)

(24 Jul 2009) » More about Juho Lintuvuori awarded the Skinner Poster Prize at Faraday Discussion 144


RSC Meet the Universities

As featured in the August edition of RSC News.

The Admissions Tutor (Dr Hughes) and Outreach Manager (Dr Beeby) attended the Royal Society of Chemistry's Meet the Universities event at The Royal Horticultural Halls, London on 6th July. The event was attended by nearly 400 lower sixth formers from all over England and representatives of the majority of UK Chemistry departments.

(22 Jul 2009) » More about RSC Meet the Universities


Alice Delcourt Lancon awarded the Analyst Poster Prize at the Analytical Research Forum 2009

Alice Delcourt Lancon was awarded the Analyst Poster Prize at the Analytical Research Forum 2009 in Pfizer Kent, 13-15th July 2009.


Microelectrode sensor arrays in microfluidic systems for high-throughput sensing


Alice Delcourt Lançon1,2, Dr. Ritu Kataky1, Prof. David Wood2, Dr. Andrew Gallant2

1 Department of Chemistry, Durham University, Durham DH1 3LE, United Kingdom

2 School of Engineering, Durham University, Durham DH1 3LE, United Kingdom

 

(21 Jul 2009)


RSC reaccredits Chemistry degrees

The Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) has today renewed the accreditation of our degree programmes so that students who graduate with a 1st or 2nd class degree continue to meet the academic requirements for Chartered Chemist (CChem).

(17 Jul 2009) » More about RSC reaccredits Chemistry degrees


More Fellowship Success

Kosmas Prassides has been awarded a Royal Society Leverhulme Trust Senior Fellowship for the coming year 2009-10.

A 5 year EPSRC Leadership Fellowship has been awarded to Paul Low and a 5 year EPSRC Career Acceleration Fellowship awarded to Ilya Kuprov.

Many congratulations to all for their success.

(15 Jul 2009)


Chemistry celebrates the success of its graduating students

Almost 100 Chemistry students, BSc, MChem, MSc and PhD cohorts, were awarded their degrees today.

The students graduated in a ceremony held at Durham Cathedral, with speeches from the University Chancellor, Bill Bryson, and Vice Chancellor, Prof Chris Higgins.

(1 Jul 2009) » More about Chemistry celebrates the success of its graduating students


Durham Chemistry undergraduate is runner-up in national science communication competition

Durham Chemistry undergraduate Alistair Linsell is this year’s runner-up of the NESTA FameLab science communication competition – congratulations, Alistair!

NESTA (National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts) Fame Lab is an annual competition consisting of regional heats and the grand final held at the Cheltenham Science Festival. Alistair was the only undergraduate among the 10 finalists. His presentation on Green Fluorescent Monkeys wowed the audience and the judges alike. Alistair’s prize includes a Channel 4 TV performance in the near future.

More information about Fame Lab can be found at: http://famelab.org/

(1 Jul 2009)


Fellowship Success

Congratulations to 2 of our commonwealth scholars in Chemistry, Elizabeth New and Gareth Lloyd who have won competitive postdoctoral Fellowships abroad for next year

(24 Jun 2009) » More about Fellowship Success


Top Universities by Subject 2010

In the Independent's Complete University Guide (2010) published in April 2009, Durham Chemistry was ranked 4th out of 48 institutions in the UK.

(5 May 2009) » More about Top Universities by Subject 2010


Rapid technique for prostate cancer diagnosis

A fast way to measure biomarkers in the body could help in diagnosing prostate cancer, says a team of UK and US scientists. The test needs only a small amount of sample and takes less than three minutes to complete.
David Parker, at Durham University, led the team that developed the method, which measures levels of citrate and lactate in bodily fluids. These are important markers for disease, explains Parker. Anions such as citrate and lactate are formed in cell metabolism processes which alter when cancers grow - citrate levels in prostate fluid fall as prostate cancer progresses. More details.


Link to BBC News Report

(6 Mar 2009)


Luminescence shines new light on proteins

A chance discovery by a team of scientists using optical probes means that changes in cells in the human body could now be seen in a completely different light.
Prof David Parker from Durham University’s Chemistry Department was working with experts from Glasgow University, and a team of international researchers, when they discovered dramatic changes in the way that light was emitted by optical probes during a series of experiments.

(17 Nov 2008) » More about Luminescence shines new light on proteins


Corday Morgan Prize

Dr David J Tozer has been awarded the Corday Morgan Prize from the Royal Society of Chemistry

(16 Jul 2008)


Molecular tug-of-war

Research at Durham University has contributed to explain a new and unexpected way in which energy is transferred between molecules when they collide. The research, a collaboration with the group of Prof. Richard Zare at Stanford University (California), Dr Stuart Greaves, a Durham graduate and PhD now at the University of Bristol, and Dr Eckart Wrede, a Lecturer in Physical Chemistry at Durham, has been recognised and selected for publication in the prestigious international journal Nature.

(16 Jul 2008) » More about Molecular tug-of-war


RSC Main Group Prize

Prof Todd B Marder has been awarded the RSC Main Group Prize.

(16 Jul 2008)


The Durham Lectures 2008

This years Durham Lectures are by Professor Christian Amatore of the Ecole Normale Supérieure, Paris.
Full Details of the Lecture and Workshop Programme are linked.

(27 May 2008)


Manchester and Durham universities paint a breakthrough for the environment

,

Manchester and Durham universities paint a breakthrough for the environment

The developers of a paint additive that is set to revolutionise the paint and coatings industries have secured funding of £90K from NorthStar Equity Investors (NSEI), through its Proof of Concept Fund.

The additive, HESS - being developed by The University of Manchester and Durham University - is a crosslinker added to water-based paints to eliminate the emission of harmful volatile organic compounds (VOCs) when drying, as well as improving the paint’s performance. Water-based paints currently on the market produce harmful VOCs when drying and are inferior to solvent-based paints, whereas HESS paints release only water and are likely to be stronger and more durable.

HESS was developed by Dr Andrew Whiting, Professor Peter Lovell and Dr David Berrisford and has been supported by The University of Manchester’s Intellectual Property commercialisation company (UMIP) to secure a European and US patent.

The NSEI funding will enable work to be carried out at Durham University to scale up the synthesis of HESS from gram to multi-kilo quantities so that it can be used in industry trials.

Several paint and coatings industry giants are keen to test HESS because it could potentially accelerate the replacement of solvent-base paints with water-based ones that greatly reduce the damaging impact on the environment and health of users.

(18 Sep 2007) » More about Manchester and Durham universities paint a breakthrough for the environment


David Parker develops non-invasive MRI probe

Intrusive biopsies for people with cancer could be sidestepped thanks to the development of fluorine-containing contrast agents by David Parker and colleagues at Durham University.

(24 Aug 2007) » More about David Parker develops non-invasive MRI probe


David Parker develops non-invasive MRI probes

Intrusive biopsies for people with cancer could be sidestepped thanks to the development of fluorine-containing contrast agents by David Parker and colleagues at Durham University.

(24 Aug 2007) » More about David Parker develops non-invasive MRI probes


Jim Feast Awarded Royal Medal

The Royal Society has awarded a Royal Medal to RSC President Professor Jim Feast for his "outstanding contributions to chemical synthesis with far reaching implications, particularly for the field of functional polymeric materials".

The announcement is the second Royal honour this year for Professor Feast, who is this month half way through his two-year tenure as President of the RSC.

http://www.rsc.org/AboutUs/News/PressReleases/2007/JimFeast.asp

(13 Jul 2007)


Jeremy Hutson wins Kołos Medal

Kolos Medal

Jeremy Hutson has been awarded the Kołos Medal by the University of Warsaw and the Polish Chemical Society. He is only the fifth winner of this prestigious award: the list of previous winners is headed by Nobel Laureate Professor Roald Hoffmann of Cornell University.

(19 Jun 2007) » More about Jeremy Hutson wins Kołos Medal


New Year Honours for Chemistry Staff

Two members of staff from the Department of Chemistry have been awarded New Year Honours in the Queens List.

Professor W. J. Feast - Emeritus Professor in the Department of Chemistry at Durham University has been awarded a CBE for services to Polymer Chemistry.

Dr E.J.F Ross - lately administrator of the Chemistry Department at Durham University has been awarded a MBE for services to Higher Education.

(1 Jan 2007)


Dr Phil Dyer awarded the Franco-Brittanique Young Scientist Award for 2006

Dr Phil Dyer has been awarded the Franco-Brittanique Young Scientist Award for 2006 from the French Academie des Sciences.

This prize is awarded every second year to young British scientists for the excellence of research work in both countries and the induced relationship between research groups.

Dr Dyer's work at the Universities of Durham and of Leicester and with the Universities of Toulouse, Pau and Rennes was recognised as outstanding by the Academie.

(8 Dec 2006)


New Method for Uric Acid Assay

Luminescent lanthanide complexes can be used to rapidly detect uric acid levels in urine and blood, say Durham scientists.

(9 Oct 2006) » More about New Method for Uric Acid Assay


Duham Student wins ICI Award for the Best Chemistry Student

The Winners of the 2006 SET (Science, Engineering & Technology Student of the Year) Awards have been announced at a ceremony attended by more than 500 students, academics, and business leaders in London's Royal Courts of Justice. Entries were received from every major university in the United Kingdom and Ireland, and judges paid tribute to the exception quality of this year's work. 45 students were shortlisted in fifteen different categories.

Lisa Murphy of the University of Durham won the The ICI Award for the Best Chemistry Student 2006 (Judged by the Royal Society of Chemistry) for Chiral electrochemical detection of 1 phenyl ethanol; a key intermediate in many pharmaceutical syntheses.

(25 Sep 2006)


Postgraduate Recruitment Fair

Durham University will hold a Postgraduate Recruitment Fair on Wednesday 15th November 2006. As part of this event, tours of the Department of Chemistry will be conducted and individual meetings can be arranged with academic staff in research areas that you are considering for your postgraduate studies.
Full details here.

(7 Sep 2006)


Chemical Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Meeting

22 September 2006
This one day meeting, hosted by the RSC Chemical Nanoscience and Nanotechnology subject group (part of the Materials Chemistry Forum), aims to offer an opportunity for those interested in nanoscience to discuss common problems, identify the major challenges and generate new research networks.
More information is available.

(1 Sep 2006)


MICRA 2006 Meeting

The MICRA 2006 meeting is being held in the Department of Chemistry, Durham University: Sunday 10th to Wednesday 13th September, 2006.

(1 Sep 2006) » More about MICRA 2006 Meeting


The Durham Solid-State NMR Research Service

The Durham Solid-State NMR Research Service, based in the Department of Chemistry, has seen the support it receives from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council extended for a further 5 years.

(31 May 2006) » More about The Durham Solid-State NMR Research Service


Glycoconjugates of Gadolinium Complexes for MRI Applications

Glycoconjugates of Gadolinium Complexes for MRI Applications" (a paper in which David Parker and colleagues at the Universities of Durham and Turin have examined the behaviour of glycoconjugates of gadolinium complexes, which offer great potential as contrast agents in MRI applications) was selected as an RSC ChemComm Hot Article

(16 May 2006)


Novel multi end-functionalised polymers. Additives to modify polymer properties at surfaces and interfaces

Work carried by a team of Durham Chemists under the auspices of the University Innovation Centre for Nanotechnology and focussed on the development of polymeric additives to modify the interfacial properties of materials without compromising the bulk physical properties has resulted in patent pending technologies.

(16 May 2006) » More about Novel multi end-functionalised polymers. Additives to modify polymer properties at surfaces and interfaces


Optical Matter

Research by Durham chemist Prof. Colin Bain has been featured in this week's New Scientist magazine ("The Stuff of Beams", May 13).

(16 May 2006) » More about Optical Matter


Demonstrator Awards

Congratulations to Antal Harsanyi, Oliver Maguire and Andrea Perrin for the 2012-2013 Postgraduate demonstrator prizes.

 

(24 Jun 2013)


Chemistry's 50th Birthday

The University is proud to welcome its Chemistry alumni back to Durham to join with us in this historic celebration of 50th years in their current departmental buildings. We are proud of its past and current successes and we look forward to further successes for the Department in the future. We do hope that many of you as possible will join us on September 23rd and 24th this year and apart from the events taking place in the Chemistry Department, there is much to see and enjoy in other parts of the University campus. The Oriential museum and the new Wolfson Heritage Centre being just two of these. Do visit the university web pages for more details and contact us if you have questions


Professor Christopher F. Higgins  DL BSc (Dunelm) PhD (Dunelm) FRSE FRSA FMedSci
Vice-Chancellor and Warden

Links

(15 Jun 2011)