Liquid and amorphous materials
Our research focuses on the atomic scale structure and dynamics of liquids and glasses and makes extensive use of both neutron and x-ray scattering methods.
Liquids and glasses are all around us and, because of their unique properties, they are of great scientific and technological importance. Relatively little is known, however, about their atomic scale nature and hence the reasons for their peculiar behaviour. Our research focuses on the atomic scale structure and dynamics of liquids and glasses and includes an extensive use of both neutron and x-ray scattering methods. The systems investigated range from network glass forming materials, through ionic liquids which include metals and aqueous solutions, to glasses that have been modified by incorporating rare-earth ions. The aim is to understand and manipulate the ordering in these systems at the atomic scale to gain insight into processes associated with the glass transition and to develop materials with new functional properties. These include rare-earth glasses with photonic applications and super-ionic conductors as used in energy storage devices and sensors.