Academic

Forces Between Biological Surfaces

By trade I am a surface chemist, which means that I am interested in how the surfaces of materials affect their properties and behaviour. My particular interest has been in how the surfaces of very small objects (from mineral 

particles to biological cells) affect the way in which they stick to each other. Through my career I have gradually moved from physical problems (such as controlling emulsion stability by controlling the forces between oil droplets) to biological problems (such as preventing blood cells from sticking to implant materials), and I have devised and built unique instruments to measure the forces of adhesion between such objects. These instruments are currently in use in a number of laboratories around the world.

My research career has spanned food research, mining engineering, biomedical science, fundamental physics and philosophy. I have been a Principal Research Scientist with the CSIRO Division of Food Research in Australia, a visiting research worker in the Physiological Laboratory at Cambridge University, an Associate Senior Research Fellow in the Anatomy Department of University College London and an Honorary Research Associate Professor in Surface Science of the University of South Australia. I am presently a Visiting Fellow in Physics at the University of Bristol. U.K.

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