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Young Warwick Scientist Short Listed for National Award

Macpherson J.V. Dr Chemistry
Macpherson J.V. Dr Chemistry
Link to print quality picture

A young scientist at the University of Warwick has been short listed for a prestigious national award.

Research chemist Dr Julie Macpherson, 33, leads a research team using nanotechnology to look at chemicals' reactivity at surfaces on a molecular level. She is one of four people short listed by the Times Higher Education Supplement for its Young Researcher of the Year Award.

Julie is a University Research Fellow of the Royal Society and has already received one award this year - the Marlow Medal - for her contribution to physical chemistry, which combines sciences to reveal how molecular reactions are linked to larger-scale phenomena.

She said: "I was surprised to be nominated, because there are so many good people out there doing fantastic science. Nano-research has a high-profile at the moment and it's a very exciting field to work in.

"Our work finds new ways to look at things which are too small to examine using traditional techniques. Nowadays chemists are less likely to be using test-tubes and microscopes, and more likely to be looking at electro-chemistry by using laboratory-customised atomic force microscopes.

"For instance, we find ways to measure the electrical signal of chemicals as they react with surfaces, giving us what we call a 'voltammetric fingerprint'. This means when we look at say, corrosion on a car, we can pick out a particular chemical species at the scene of the crime, on a tiny scale"

Julie graduated from Warwick in 1999, with a top first-class honours degree and the ICI prize for her research. Despite her success at home and abroad - including offers from top US universities- she has chosen to stay at the University of Warwick.

The judges will announce their decision on 23 November.

For further information contact:

Dr Julie Macpherson on 024 7657 3886

Richard Fern, Press Officer,
Communications Office, University House
University of Warwick, Coventry CV4 8UW
024 7657 4255 email:

REF PR69 RWF 30 September