Research

Research in the Morrill group is focused in the field of synthetic organic chemistry. We are particularly interested in exploring new frontiers in organocatalysis, employing dual catalytic methods to rapidly generate molecular complexity, forming densely functionalised molecules in a stereodefined fashion. The multi-step, one-pot nature of this dual catalysis approach represents progress towards more sustainable chemistry. The utility and impact of our developed methodologies will ultimately be exemplified through its application in the total synthesis of natural products and molecules of biological significance.

Research in the Morrill group has been underway since October 2015 and our current core areas of interest include:

These projects will serve as an excellent platform for talented and highly motivated students to receive a first-class training in synthetic organic chemistry that will thoroughly prepare them for a future career in the chemical industry or in academia.

We are also actively engaged in a number of collaborative research projects in the following areas:

  • Employing enabling tools (flow and mechanochemistry) for organocatalytic processes (in collaboration with Dr Duncan Browne)
  • Organocatalytic artificial enzymes (in collaboration with Dr Louis Luk)

Funding is gratefully acknowledged from:

  • The EPSRC for a Standard Research Grant (EP/R006504/1, 2017-2020), the Centre for Doctoral Training in Catalysis (EP/L016443/1, 2016-2019) and a Doctoral Training Grant (EP/M50631X/1, 2015-2018)
  • The Leverhulme Trust for two Research Project Grants (RPG-2015-361, 2016-2019 and RPG-2017-195, 2017-2020 (PI: Dr Louis Luk))
  • The Royal Society for a Research Grant (RG150466, 2016-2017)
  • The Cardiff University Research Opportunities Programme (CUROP) for a summer research scholarship (2016-2017)
  • The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) for a RISE Worldwide Research Scholarship (2016)
  • Fluorochem for generous donation of chemicals during lab start-up (2015)
  • Cardiff University for start-up funds (2015)