Personal profile

My group


MChem (2004) and PhD (2008, supervised by Prof. Cameron Jones) both obtained at Cardiff University.

Post-doctoral work carried out with Prof. Stephen T. Liddle at the University of Nottingham (2008-2012).

Lecturer in the Departmenr of Chemistry 2012-2017, Senior Lecturer 2017-2019, Reader 2019-2021, Professor of Inorganic Chemistry since 2021.

Group webpage:


Research interests

We are a synthetic chemistry group that focuses on f-element compounds - the lanthanides and actinides. We are interested in the synthesis of complexes with unusual geometrical features, which can engender interesting physical properties. These complexes are prepared by advanced Schlenk and glovebox techniques and are characterised by a plethora of techniques including single crystal X-ray crystallography, EPR, NMR, UV/Vis/NIR, FTIR, and Raman spectroscopies, magnetometric methods (eg. SQUID, Evans method), cyclic voltammetry, mass spectrometry and elemental analysis. Analytical data is supplemented by comprehensive theoretical studies on computationally demanding calculations of paramagnetic f-element systems with collaborators. All of these techniques combine to deepen our understanding of fundamentals of structure and bonding. We also explore the interesting further reactivity of these complexes.

The f-elements have remarkable physical attributes that have been utilised in numerous consumer devices. Lanthanides find most industrial application in catalytic converters and petroleum refining, whilst their unique optical and magnetic properties have been exploited in high temperature superconductors, rare-earth magnets, magnetic resonance and fluorescence medical imaging, electric motors, lasers and phosphors. In addition, reactive lanthanide compounds have been frequently employed in fine chemical synthesis, e.g. hydroelementation, polymerisation and single-electron transfer (SET) reagents such as ceric ammonium nitrate (CAN) and samarium(II) diiodide. The inherent radioactivity of actinides has currently limited their usage to nuclear fuel cycles, but their molecular complexes often exhibit enhanced reactivity profiles that could be utilized in catalysis. However, despite these well-established applications, our knowledge of the f-elements lags behind the rest of the Periodic Table, thus we must first develop their fundamental chemistry to provide the necessary insights for future technologies.

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy, Investigations into the Reactivity of a Gallium(I) N-Heterocyclic Carbene Analogue, Cardiff University

27 Sept 200427 Sept 2007

Award Date: 13 May 2008

Master of Chemistry, MChem 1st class with honours, Cardiff University

27 Sept 200031 May 2004

Award Date: 14 Jul 2004

Areas of expertise

  • QD Chemistry
  • synthetic
  • non-aqueous
  • f-element
  • organometallic
  • coordination

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Energy
  • Dalton Nuclear Institute


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