Graduate Students

Rory McNulty

Rory McNulty completed his Masters degree at the University of Nottingham in 2018 and is now early career researcher working as part of the Faraday Institution degradation project at the University of Nottingham. My primary research areas are: 1) The lithium-air battery, exploring water toleration as a function of water-solvent interactions. 2) Lithium-ion battery degradation, largely focused on electrolyte degradation and the role of additives. 3) Gas evolution, studying the chemistry of singlet O2 in lithium-air and -ion batteries. I am passionate about renewable energy and developing sustainable solutions, motivated by making tangible real-world impact throughout my career. My career interests lie in the fundamental development of battery technology, from state-of-the-art lithium-ion to emerging lithium-based battery chemistries and exploring solutions beyond lithium-ion. I interrupted my studies in August 2021 to complete a 4-month internship opportunity with Benchmark Minerals Intelligence, exploring disruptive battery technologies and compiling technology and industry landscape reports.

Catherine Peak

Catherine completed her Masters in Chemistry at the University of York in 2015. She completed her final year of study in industry at the Johnson Matthey Technology Centre in Teesside. Following graduation she worked with Johnson Matthey on several projects in the field of heterogenous catalysis until 2017 when she moved to Nottingham. Catherine is currently studying towards a Ph.D. with the Centre for Doctoral Training in Sustainable Chemistry, under the supervision of Dr. Darren Walsh and Dr. Graham Newton. She is in her final year of research, working on the development of multi-electron charge carriers, such as fullerenes and polyoxometalates for high energy redox flow batteries.

Nicole Tsang

Nicole graduated from the University of Nottingham in 2019 with a master’s degree in Chemistry. During her degree, she completed a 12-month industrial placement at Hoffmann-La Roche in Basel, Switzerland. As a Medicinal Chemistry Intern, Nicole was supervised by Dr Giuseppe Cecere and had the role of planning, designing and conducting new synthetic reactions to access a range of target compounds. In her master’s year at the University of Nottingham, she was supervised by Dr Liam Ball and her research project consisted of developing a concise and convenient method for the interconversion of aromatic heterocycles within complex molecules. Nicole is currently doing a PhD under the supervision of Dr Graham Newton and Prof. Hon Wai Lam, researching the use of polyoxometalates in photocatalysis.  

Outside of Chemistry, she enjoys playing and coaching Korfball, travelling, and watching films.






Magdalena Muhr

Ganesh Vailaya

Costin Puscalau

Originally from Romania, Constantin moved to Italy in his early life. He graduated from the University of Pavia in 2019 with an MSci in Physical Chemistry. For his thesis project he worked under the supervision of Prof. Doretta Capsoni, synthesizing and employing Metal Organic Frameworks (MOF) in the drug delivery field. Since graduating, he was offered an 8 month research scholarship at the same University in Synthesis and characterization of MOFs and Double Layered Hydroxides (LDH) to be used in controlled drug release and recovery of emerging pollutants from wastewater. His research interests include organometallic synthesis and electrochemistry. Outside of chemistry, he enjoys hiking, playing basketball and paintball.

Nathan Richardson

Nathan is a PhD student based in the GSK Carbon Neutral Laboratory at the University of Nottingham. He graduated from UoN in 2020 with a Master’s degree in Natural Sciences (chemistry, maths and physics). During Nathan’s studies he participated in the Faraday Institution’s FUSE internship programme under the supervision of Dr Lee Johnson, where he used EQCM to probe the solid-electrolyte interphase of lithium-ion cathode materials. Nathan is currently working in the NAMI group as part of the Faraday Institution’s LiSTAR project, and is investigating the non-equilibrium reaction chemistry and mechanisms in lithium-sulfur batteries. Outside of chemistry, his hobbies include playing sports, gaming and learning Japanese.

Margaret Smith








Courtney Quinn

Courtney is originally from rural Dromore (County Down) Northern Ireland and graduated from Queen's University Belfast with a 2:1 bachelors in chemical engineering in 2020. During her studies at Queen's University Belfast she gained a QUILL summer studentship under Dr Haresh Manyar where she studied polymer immobilised ionic liquids as green catalysts for the synthesis of biofuel additives. Courtney undertook ERASMUS industrial placements in the pharmaceutical sector as part of her undergraduate degree. In 2019 she moved to Cork, Ireland to work as a process engineering intern in the R&D department of the GSK Cork API site and then in the Clinical Supply department of the site once it was acquired by ThermoFisher Scientific. In late 2020 Courtney moved to Nottingham to start her doctoral studies at the University of Nottingham with the NAMI group under the supervision of Dr Graham Newton, Dr Darren Walsh and Dr Lee Johnson as part of the Sustainable Hydrogen Centre for Doctoral Training. The Sustainable Hydrogen (SusHy) Centre for Doctoral Training is a collaboration between the Universities of Nottingham, Loughborough, Birmingham and Ulster. The centre is supported by the Engineering and Sciences Research Council and industrial partners. Courtney's current research interests lie in the area of sustainable hydrogen evolution systems. She has a keen interest in methods of encapsulation of redox species for use in electrocatalytic systems and in the use of ionic liquids for electrolysis. Courtney is particularly interested in the modelling and optimisation of the aforementioned systems.

Courtney is extremely passionate about sustainable agriculture and outreach so in her spare time she enjoys assisting with her family farm in Northern Ireland and volunteering as a STEM Ambassador. Courtney also enjoys activities such as needle felting, escape rooms and Geocaching.

Masters Students