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Research interests

Work in the Edler group focuses on understanding the formation of functional hierarchically structured materials in order to apply that understanding to make new materials. We use self-assembly, driven by interactions between nanoscopic species (micelles, nanoparticles, polymers) in solution and at interfaces to form materials with organized structures from nm to cm. Understanding interactions between surfaces, nanoparticles and other species is central to our control over structure and thus function.

We use time-resolved grazing incidence X-ray & neutron reflectivity, liquid diffraction and small angle scattering to study formation mechanisms & final structures. A range of other complementary techniques (including TEM, SEM, AFM, NMR, light scattering, surface tension, conductivity, XRD, SESANS, USANS/USAXS, gas adsorption) are also used to characterise our materials across length scales from tens of Ångstroms to microns.

Extensive collaborations with other groups in industry and academia apply the novel materials synthesised in our group to applications from delivery of active species, to catalysis and “green” gels or emulsions.

 

For more details please see the Edler group page.

 

Current research topics

  • Self-assembly, solvent structures and materials synthesis in deep eutectic solvents
  • Lipid nanodiscs for membrane protein supports & drug encapsulation
  • Biodegradable surfactant synthesis & characterisation
  • Polymer-surfactant and polymer-protein conjugates in films & particles for encapsulation/release
  • Functionalised cellulose nanofibril thickeners for sustainable aqueous formulations
  • Biodegradable microbeads and Pickering emulsions for formulations
  • Mesoporous inorganic oxide particles and membranes.

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