Chemistry at the University of Liverpool

The Characterisation Lab

The lab houses state-of-art equipment for materials characterisation and reactions analysis:

Autochem II 2920 Chemisorption

Autochem II 2920 Chemisorption is a fully automated chemisorption analyzer that allows you to:

  • Conduct comprehensive array of highly precise studies of chemical adsorption and temperature-programmed reactions
  • Acquire valuable information about the physical properties of a catalyst, catalyst support or other materials.
  • Determine catalytic properties such as percent of metal dispersion, active metal surface area, acid strength, surface acidity, distribution of strength of active sites and BET surface area.
  • Automatically perform pulse chemisorption, temperature-programmed reduction (TPR), desorption (TPD), oxidation (TPO) and reaction analyses.

Malvern Nano ZS Zetasizer

The Malvern Nano ZS Zetasizer provides high performance size analysis using dynamic light scattering with ‘NIBS’ optics as well as zeta potential and molecular weight analysis with static light scattering. It can also be used to generate a measure of rheology through the tracking of the Brownian motion of tracer particles.

Kruss Force Tensiometer

Kruss Force Tensiometer measures surface tension of the air-liquid interface that can be used to determine Critical Micelle Concentration.



HPLC Systems

The Characterization Lab has also a wide range of HPLC systems and methods available. There is currently an Analytical HPLC system, a Prep HPLC system, A Single Quadrupole LC-MS and a HPLC - Quadrupole Time of Flight MS system all of which are made by Agilent.

  • The Analytical HPLC is used for general separations and has three different detection methods: Diode Array Detectors (UV-Vis), Refractive Index and Evaporative Light Scattering Detector. Method optimization is carried out with a combination of detectors and various column chemistries.
  • The Prep HPLC system is used to fractionate large volumes of samples to further study/experimentation. With two binary pump systems the combined flow rate is 200ml/min giving a wide range of compatible column diameters to meet almost any requirement.
  • The LC -SQMS is used for rapid screening and high throughput of samples generated in the synthesis lab. It gives good resolution and positive results for quick screens. Running Chemstation means that it is compatible with the high throughput data tracking from the Freeslate platform as is the standard HPLC system.
  • The LC-QTOFMS leverages its massive resolution and excellent mass accuracy to determine identities of compounds in complex mixtures. It has a very high mass range thanks to its Electrospray Ionisation technique and Time of Flight mass analyser. It can measure as low as 20 mass/charge to 20000 mass/charge.

We specialise in sugars analysis including separation, identification and quantification but have tested for a wide array of compounds from volatile fatty acids to molecular cages. Various techniques are employed for separations including standard reverse phase chemistries such as C8, C18 and phenyl but also more niche applications including, but not limited to, Hydrophilic Interaction Liquid Chromatography (HILIC) and Ion Exchange.