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Mary Thomas

Academic Background

MSc Molecular Analytical Science (Distinction) - University of Warwick 2016

MSci Chemistry (First Class Hons) - University of Birmingham 2015

Awarded the Allen Murray Centenary Scholarship from 2012/13 to 2014/15.

PhD Project

I am currently in the final year of my PhD in Analytical Science. My project, titled Petroleomics: Crude and Heavy Fuel Oil Fingerprinting and Asphaltenes, builds on the MSc Mini Project and is supervised by Mark Barrow (Department of Chemistry), Shaun Carney, and David Growney (Lubrizol Ltd). I attend a biannual University Contacts Meeting (UCM) at Lubrizol Limited, where I present the project as it progresses.


Pushing the analytical limits: new insights into complex mixtures using mass spectra segments of constant ultrahigh resolving power. Palacio Lozano, D. C.; Gavard, R.; Arenas-Diaz, J. P.; Thomas, M. J.; Stranz, D. D.; Mej√≠a-Ospino, E.; Guzman, A.; Spencer, S. E. F.; Rossell, D.; Barrow, M. P., Chemical Science 2019, 10(29), 6966-6978. 10.1039/C9SC02903F 

Characterization of oil sands naphthenic acids by negative-ion electrospray ionization mass spectrometry: Influence of acidic versus basic transfer solvent. Peru, K. M.; Thomas, M. J.; Palacio Lozano, D. C.; McMartin, D. W.; Headley, J. V.; Barrow, M. P., Chemosphere 2019, 222, 1017-1024. 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2019.01.162

Petroleomic depth profiling of Staten Island salt marsh soil: 2 omega detection FTICR MS offers a new solution for the analysis of environmental contaminants. Thomas, M. J.; Collinge, E.; Witt, M.; Lozano, D. C. P.; Vane, C. H.; Moss-Hayes, V.; Barrow, M. P., Science of the Total Environment 2019, 662, 852-862. 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.01.228

Conferences Attended

  • Oral presentation at 22nd International Mass Spectrometry Conference, Florence, Italy (August 2018).

  • Poster presentation at RSC Analytical Research Forum 2018, London, UK (June 2018).

  • Poster presentation at 66th ASMS Conference on Mass Spectrometry and Allied Topics, San Diego, CA, USA (June 2018).

  • Oral presentation at the 15th International Symposium on Hyphenated Techniques in Chromatography and Separation Technology, Cardiff, UK (January 2018).

  • Poster presentation at 38th BMSS Annual Meeting, Manchester, UK (September 2017).
  • Oral presentation at the 7th International Symposium on Energy, Manchester, UK (August 2017).

  • RSC Analytical Research Forum 2017, London, UK.
  • Workshop on Pollution, Environmental Justice, and Citizen Science, University of Warwick (May 2017).
  • Warwick Energy GRP Conference - The Energy Trilemma, University of Warwick (February 2017).

Previous Work

MSc Mini Project 1: Petroleomics - Crude Oil Fingerprinting and Asphaltenes

Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry (FT-ICR MS) was used for ultrahigh resolution characterization of petroleum samples. The PhD aims to build upon the success of this project and investigate the key components of selected petroleum samples, with respect to learning more about bulk properties.

MSc Mini Project 2: Investigating Autoxidation Mechanisms by EPR Spectroscopy

Radical formation was monitored in active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) and model compounds to provide an indication of their susceptibility to autoxidation under a range of experimental conditions. Little correlation was found between radical concentration and computationally determined bond dissociation energy values, highlighting the need to consider other degradation pathways for systematic risk assessment of API stability.

MSci Final Year Project: NMR Studies of Reverse Micelles

Reverse micelles were characterised using Pulsed Gradient Stimulated Echo (PGSTE) measurements as well as Multiple Quantum Filtered Magic Angle (MQF-MA) experiments at the University of Nottingham. The size of reverse micelles was confirmed to increase with increasing water to surfactant ratio, while their shape was found to be unaffected by changes in temperature or solvent phase.

Other Interests

I am currently a Leader in Training at my local Guide Unit, helping to deliver a varied programme of activities and building confidence and leadership skills for girls and young women.

I have been a Befriending Volunteer for Age UK Warwickshire since February 2012. I make regular visits to a client over a long term period for a cup of tea and a chat, helping to combat isolation in old age.


Mary Thomas


Senate House

University of Warwick