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Southampton chemistry partnership opens new opportunities for innovation

Published: 11 April 2017
Professor Gill Reid and Ron Swart
Professor Gill Reid welcomes Ron Swart as KCMC Knowledge Transfer Manager for Southampton

The University of Southampton has been welcomed as the sixth academic partner of the Knowledge Centre for Materials Chemistry (KCMC), a centre of expertise that brings together leading-edge academic research facilities, knowledge and expertise in applied materials chemistry.

Southampton joins the KCMC’s founder institutions Manchester, Liverpool and Bolton universities, and recent member University of Bristol, together with the Science and Technology Facilities Council at Daresbury.  The aim of the KCMC is to drive industrial growth for UK chemistry-using industries through the coordination, development and exploitation of frontline materials chemistry research.

Professor Gill Reid, Head of Chemistry at the University of Southampton, said: “We are delighted to join the KCMC and look forward to many new and beneficial collaborations with fellow researchers in academia and industry who, like us, are at the cutting-edge of transforming research into answers to real-world problems and finding solutions to some of today’s toughest challenges.

“Our decades of achievement and experience demonstrate that our research and industrial successes in chemistry and related disciplines have, and will continue to have, a significant impact on society, industry, Government and public service.”

Chemistry at Southampton is well-known nationally and internationally for its excellence and long-standing reputation for expertise and innovation. The award-winning department is particularly focused on the synthesis, processing and application of new materials and functional molecules vital to driving future innovation and technology and improving the sustainability of our society through developments in areas such as energy, catalysis and healthcare.

In order to address these challenges, Southampton is at the forefront of developments to synthesise diverse classes of inorganic, organic, solid-state and supramolecular materials and assemblies, as well as having a world-leading reputation in electrochemistry and its applications.

On-site access to fabrication and clean room facilities in the University provides a direct route to processing new structures and devices. Expertise in computational methods provides a detailed understanding of material properties for diverse applications.

Southampton also provides unique services to science and industry for materials diffraction and is home to the UK National Crystallography Service, which supports and develops world-leading research in chemistry, biochemistry and physical sciences.

Professor Andrew Hector, Professor of Inorganic Chemistry, and Dr Darren Bradshaw, Associate Professor in Functional Materials and Head of Functional Inorganic Materials and Supramolecular Chemistry, are leading on the KCMC Partnership for the University.

Starting a new role as KCMC Knowledge Transfer Manager for Southampton is Ron Swart, who brings more than 30 years’ experience in industrial research and development to the role, including a broad background in managing multi-disciplinary technical projects across international locations.

Mr Swart has operated in a wide variety of technical fields, from coating resins through metal extraction chemistry to developments in analytical science. He has a particular interest in interfacial chemistry and colloid science.

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