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Harding Distinguished Postgraduate Scholars Programme


  Hamish MacLeod


  Chemical Engineering, St Catharine's College

  PhD thesis: TBC



Research interests:

  1. Porous Materials
  2. Tunable Functionality
  3. Sustainability, Green Energy, and Carbon Capture
  4. Adsorption

Metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) are a group of materials notable for their extremely high surface area to mass ratio, and for the diversity of architectures that can be derived by varying the components used in their construction: organic molecule linkers and metal nodes. These properties make MOFs well suited to storing large volumes of gas via adsorption, and by optimising the functionality and size of components. The next step in making MOFs viable for industrial scale impact is improving their performance even further, by synthesising MOF monoliths. Compared to a powder, monoliths optimise the available area for adsorption and have improved mechanical properties. My research focuses on selecting promising candidate materials for, among other applications, carbon capture and hydrogen gas storage. I aim to develop synthetic routes to transform them into monoliths, and test their performance for the targeted application.

Who or what inspired you to pursue your research interests?

Having undertaken a range of research projects in inorganic and organic materials chemistry I was inspired to pursue an interdisciplinary project to develop tuneable, functional materials with direct environmental applicability, and satisfy my scientific curiosity. I was first introduced to metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) in my Master's project, where I sought to combine them with zeolites to create a layered hybrid material, and I see them as powerful materials with the potential to impact environmental outcomes. My scientific outlook is the product of numerous supportive and enriching research environments fostered by a number of excellent mentors, to whom I am grateful.