The Department of Materials is one of the top-ranked materialsdepartments in the UK. Its vibrant research school consists of around 25 academic staff, 13 Senior Research Fellows, and around 150 research students and 50 post-doctoral researchers. Research students come from a wide diversity of backgrounds being graduates in the traditional subjects of materials science, physics, chemistry and engineering and also mathematics, earth sciences and biology.
Research interests of the Department extend over most branches ofmaterials science, as well as some aspects of solid state physics and chemistry: they include the study of a wide range of materials of relevance in advanced technological applications, including metals and alloys, composites, semi- and super-conductors, polymers, biomaterials, ceramics and materials for quantum information processing.
Much of the research is carried out in close collaboration with industry. World-leading research takes place on:
the characterisation of materials, where there is emphasis on electron microscopy and related techniques;
processing and manufacturing of materials;
modelling of materials, where there is attention to both structures and processes,
properties of materials; and
quantum information processing, which includes groups working on experimental studies, theory and modelling.
Each of the department' s research groups works within one or more of our seven broad themes of:
Structural and nuclear materials
Polymers and biomaterials
Processing and manufacturing
Computational materials modelling
In the UK Government’ s most recent assessment of research excellence in UK universities, the 2008 RAE, Oxford Materials was one of the top-ratedmaterials departments in the country. All eligible academic staff and 14 early career researchers (Royal Society URFs, RAEng Fellows and similar post-doctoral fellows) were submitted for assessment and 80% of our activity was judged to be in the highest categories of excellence (Grades 4* &3*; respectively ‘ world-leading’ and ‘ internationally excellent’ ).
The current research programmes are summarised in the Department’ s Researches in Progress, an electronic version of which is available at theMaterials website.