Best quote from a chat so far "The only cleavage I want to see is at a cellular level."
University of Nottingham
Medicinal and Biological Chemsitry with an assessed year in industry (MSci)
Centre of Doctoral Training in Sustainable Chemistry ♻ at the University of Nottingham
Favourite thing to do in my job It sounds really boring but I love using rotary evaporators (a machine which boils then condenses liquids). When the solvent starts to condense, it looks like it’s raining inside a glass tube and it’s really mesmerising to watch!
I am very energetic and need to do loads of things to use up that energy.
Continuous flow ? photochemistry☀️ using non-invasive ⚗ analysis methods.
I am part of the Centre of Doctoral Training in Sustainable Chemistry♻. This means that my project is focused on doing chemistry in more environmentally friendly ways.
The continuous flow part is similar to how you can turn your tap on at home and instantly get hot water, as opposed to boiling a kettle – but which medicines. This means that medicines could be made very energy efficiency and in larger quantities (bath vs. cup of tea).
Photochemistry is the use of light to make chemicals instead of expensive metals and lots of heat. The use of light means that I can make medicines which are, otherwise, very hard to make. This is also quite an environmentally friendly way to make chemicals.
The non-invasive analysis methods is a way of checking if a reaction is completed without having to take a sample. Think cooking rice and being able to know exactly when its done just by looking at it – but with medicines!
My Typical Day
I have no typical day.
In the last three weeks alone, I have been doing lots of different things. I have been doing Infra Red, UV/vis spectroscopy, organic synthesis, chromatography, building various different sizes and types of reactors, writing computer programmes, processing data, having meetings, participating in public engagement, learning how to use new software, reading, planning research and giving presentations.
As you can see I do a wide variety of things so I don’t suppose there ever is a typical day.
What I'd do with the money
It would be fantastic.
I’d try to collaborate with the Outreach teams at Nottingham University and come up with an exhibition or show that will teach people about how chemistry is having an effect on climate change and how we are working to reduce global warming. It’s something I’m really interested in and think other people would like it too. It would be nice to show the public that we care about the environment and what we are trying to do to look after it!
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
Thinker, fighter, feline-friend
What's the best thing you've done in your career?
Titrated my own wee to find out how much vitamin C was in it.
What or who inspired you to follow your career?
Watching QI/ My Granddad
What was your favourite subject at school?
What did you want to be after you left school?
Were you ever in trouble at school?
Yep, especially in Science and English
If you weren't a scientist, what would you be?
Who is your favourite singer or band?
What's your favourite food?
BBQ Chicken pizza
What is the most fun thing you've done?
Spent two weeks in France learning about aliens, prehistoric life and how the Earth was made.
If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!
I’d like to have an element named after me, be able to read people’s minds and keep bees ?
Tell us a joke.
Why did the bear dissolve in water? It was a polar bear! (Chemistry jokes are awful!)
First of all my cats.
Ginger = Princess , White = Reggie.
Everyone in my year (cohort) on the CDT with me.
This is me working in the lab. Looking like I’m doing something science-y.
This boring white box is a gas chromatograph which I have been using. It heats mixtures up until they become a gas and separates them. It’s really useful for helping me work out if I’ve made what I think I have and how pure the chemicals I’ve made are.
Another piece of equipment I use is a rotary evapourator. It heats things up and reduces the pressure of a solution so that the solvent boils off. This solvent is then condensed into the next flask along. It’s a really useful machine for getting a product out of a solvent. It’s my favourite one to watch!
My bosses: Professor Mike George (left), Professor Sir Martyn Poliakoff (right)
My boss blowing stuff up: