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The University of Southampton
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Professor Andrew L Hector BSc, PhD, PGCert, FRSC, FHEA

Professor of Inorganic Chemistry

Professor Andrew L Hector's photo

Professor Andrew L Hector is a Professor of Inorganic Chemistry within the Electrochemistry group in the School of Chemistry at the University of Southampton.



Andrew Hector came to Southampton as a postdoctoral research fellow first in complex fluorides and oxyfluorides, then in lithium battery cathode materials. He took up a Royal Society University Research Fellowship to study precursor routes to new metal nitride compositions and processing methods before joining the academic staff. Andrew is a member of the Electrochemistry research grouping, with interests linking materials synthesis and characterisation with electrochemical applications.

Externally Andrew is a fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry and a member the International Society of Electrochemistry. He currently serves on the RSC Electrochemistry interest group committee as treasurer. He is an EPSRC College member and serves on the Royal Society Research Grants panel and the IRC Government of Ireland PG scholarships panel.

BSc, Chemistry, Imperial College, 1992

PhD, University College London, 1996

Professor, University of Southampton, since 2015

Senior lecturer, University of Southampton, 2011-2015

Lecturer, University of Southampton, 2008-2011

Royal Society URF, University of Southampton, 2000-2008

Research Fellow, University of Southampton, 1995-2000

Research interests

Research in the Hector group has three key themes:

  • Materials synthesis, including metal nitrides, thin film materials, sol-gel and solvothermal processes and porous structures. 
  • Materials characterisation – powder and thin film diffraction, microscopy and spectroscopy techniques.
  • Electrochemistry, including charge storage in battery and supercapacitor type cells, and electrodeposition of various materials. 

We have a long-standing interest in metal nitrides produced through solid state, sol-gel and solvothermal chemistry and often focussed on producing them in new forms. Metal nitrides are less well explored than metal oxides, as oxides occur so prominently in nature in our oxygen-rich atmosphere. Nitrides have a number of important technological applications and are of interest for a diverse range of potential new applications – we are currently working on applications in charge storage and catalysis.

Our electrochemistry activities include the electrochemical deposition of nanomaterials, assessment of porosity in some deposited materials and the assessment of charge storage materials. The latter is often linked to potential applications of metal nitrides or to understanding changes that occur during cell operation.

Thorough characterisation is essential to the understanding of materials. We carry out powder and thin film diffraction, and small angle scattering, studies in Southampton and also at synchrotron X-ray (Diamond Light Source) and neutron (ISIS and ILL) central facilities. We also use electron microscopy to examine microstructure and nanostructure, EDX, WDX and XPS to examine compositions, and X-ray absorption spectroscopy for local structure and oxidation state information.

MPhil/PhD Research

Self-propagating metathesis preparations of inorganic materials, PhD supervised by Ivan Parkin at UCL


Research group


Affiliate research group

Functional Inorganic, Materials and Supramolecular Chemistry

Research project(s)

Hector: Sol-gel chemistry to nitride materials

ADEPT - Advanced Devices by ElectroPlaTing

Hector: Charge Storage with Metal Nitrides

Hector: Catalysis with metal nitrides

Hector: Micro- and nano-structured thin film materials

Garcia-Araez: A new method of lithium production and recycling

Deputy Head of School Education

Treasurer of the RSC Electrochemistry interest group

PhD Supervision

Currently primary supervisor for Gilles Moehl, Li Shao, Jon Allen, Bowen Liu, Nabil Mohamed, Sidrah Hussain, Junren Wang and Zening Zhu

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Key Publications

    CHEM1051 Introduction to Practical Chemistry I: demonstrator

    CHEM1048 Structure and Bonding and CHEM1053 Main Group and Transition Metal Chemistry: tutor

    CHEM6146 X-Ray Crystallographic Techniques, Advanced Main Group Chemistry and Applications: lecturer

    CHEM6152 Battery Materials and Characterisation: module coordinator and lecturer

    CHEM6153 X-Ray Diffraction as a Characterisation Method: lecturer

    Electrochemistry Summer School: lecturer and experiment lead

    Professor Andrew L Hector
    Chemistry University of Southampton Highfield Southampton SO17 1BJ

    Room Number : 30/4037

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