The research interests of the Mills group are wide and varied including: dye and semiconductor photochemistry, redox catalysis (in particular, oxygen catalysis), solar energy conversion (in particular artificial photosynthesis) and colour and fluorescence based indicators and smart inks and plastic films.
Three undergraduate students from Queen’s University of Belfast were granted summer studentships within the group, and worked on a variety of projects during their time here. Here’s what they have to say:
‘We spent the summer with the group assisting in research on photosensitive dyes. We mainly did work on the following:
– Testing photocatalytic indicator inks on a variety of active surfaces and testing prototype inks
– Modifying the formulation of inks to be used in marker pens, and producing pens featuring photocatalyst test inks. The pens provide a convenient way of applying ink to a photocatalytic surface to test its activity.
– Work with indicator dyes in development for the SODIs project. The project involves the use of solar energy to disinfect water. The inks can be used to show when the water has received enough UV light to be sterilised.
We really enjoyed the experience, and look forward to putting the skills we learnt into practice in our future studies’.
The 4th International Conference on Semiconductor Photochemistry (SP4), hosted by Professor Josef Krýsa of the Institute of Chemical Technology Prague was well attended by the Mills Group, with Professor Andrew Mills, two postdoctoral researchers and two PhD students representing the group.
Christopher O’Rourke and Nathan Wells both presented posters during the course of the conference, with the latter also giving a short oral presentation.