Research facilities

xray diffraction

Our academics and postgraduate researchers have access to a wide range of specialist facilities and laboratories. Undergraduate and Masters students may benefit from these facilities during their project work.

  • Flow-Xl: Enables in-situ, time-resolved characterisation of crystallisation processes in highly controlled environments. This is achieved by coupling state of the art laboratory X-ray diffraction and Raman spectroscopy to a range of fully-integrated flow platforms. These can be used simultaneously to study crystallisation pathways for a range of functional materials.
  • Colour science analytical: Scanning electron microscopy / energy dispersive x-ray spectrometry, thermal analysis, particle size analysis, gas chromatography / mass spectrometry, capillary electrophoresis, rheometer.  
  • Nova NanoSEM450 scanning electron microscope: This instrument operates with a FEG source in standard secondary electron and backscattered electron modes and also has a CBS detector which makes it possible to image non-conductive samples without coating.
  • NMR spectroscopy: Offers experimentation and support for standard chemical analysis and the opportunity to collaborate using specialist experimental design to support cutting edge research.
  • Highly Instrumented Reactor for Atmospheric Chemistry (HIRAC): A NERC funded atmospheric simulation chamber developed to bridge the divide between the study of elementary reactions in the lab, and large scale field work. HIRAC allows researchers the unique ability to control temperature, pressure and photolysis rates during experiments. Contact: Paul Seakins, e:
  • Mass spectrometry: Our mass spectrometry facilities provide cutting edge, highly sensitive determination of molecular weight and analysis of mixtures.
  • High-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC): We have a number of HPLC instruments for analytical and preparative work. A range of chiral columns are also available for ee determination. 
  • Robotic liquid handling and screening: Plate based screening methods enable high throughput assays to be performed. These assays are accelerated where the robotic liquid handler can be used for plate preparation.
  • Biological chemistry suite: Two category 2 and one category 1 containment labs are fully equipped for molecular biology and protein expression/purification. Facilities include two refrigerated Kuhner shaker-incubators, each with capacity for up to 10 L of bacterial or yeast culture; Constant Systems cell disrupter; Beckman Coulter high speed centrifuge with maximum centrifugal force of 110,000 x g; and Akta Purifier and BioRad FPLC systems. Contact: Bruce Turnbull, e:
  • X-ray diffraction: Our facility offers both single crystal and powder X-ray analysis, ranging from simple bulk powder analysis through to crystal structure solution and refinement.
  • Specialist carbon dioxide facilities: We have a range of equipment for high pressure (liquid and supercritical) and low pressure (gaseous) carbon dioxide, much of it housed in a dedicated interdisciplinary CO2 laboratory funded by the Wolfson Foundation. Contact: Christopher Rayner, e:

We also make use of University facilities, including:

  • Institute for Process Research and Development: A collaborative venture bringing together chemists and chemical process engineers with industry to improve manufacturing processes of fine chemicals, pharmaceuticals and new materials.
  • Bragg facilities: The Bragg Centre for Materials Research provides Leeds-Diamond small angle X-ray spectroscopy (SAXS) facilities, such as an open access high-resolution X-ray scattering facility for nanostructural fine-analysis of complex soft matter, polymers, bio-materials and advanced solid materials.

Working with business

We are committed to sharing our facilities and associated expertise with external academic and industrial collaborators. Contact our Research and Innovation team for more information.