The people working in and with the BonLab are a dynamic mixture with backgrounds in chemistry, chemical engineering, physics, biology, mathematics, engineering and manufacturing.

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Stefan A. F. Bon is a full professor in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Warwick, visiting professor at the university Claude Bernard Lyon I (spring 2014) and visiting professor at the University of Tasmania (summer 2014). He has studied chemical engineering at the Eindhoven University of Technology (TUe) in the Netherlands (cum laude, 1989-1993). He did his Ph.D. (1993-1998) in the polymer chemistry group of Anton L. German at TUe, after which he worked as a post-doctoral research assistant in the group of prof. David M. Haddleton at the University of Warwick (1998-2000). He was appointed as Unilever Lecturer in Polymer Chemistry at the University of Warwick in January 2001. During this period of research he focussed on the mechanistic aspects of living radical polymerisation in both homogeneous and heterogeneous systems, including the first ever living radical polymerization performed in emulsion. 


From 2005 Stefan Bon shifted his research interests from living radical polymerization to supracolloidal chemical engineering. Current research focusses on the design of assembled supracolloidal structures and the synthesis of their colloidal and macromolecular building blocks through combination of polymer chemistry, colloid science, soft matter physics, and chemical engineering. 

Stefan Bon is a Fellow of the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC), an invited member and 2013-2015 chair of the International Polymer Colloids Group (IPCG), was awarded the 2015-2016 Royal Society of Chemistry Materials Division Outreach Lecturer honour.


Brooke Longbottom


Formerly hailing from Bedfordshire, Brooke completed his Masters in chemistry at the University of Warwick in 2010 and was awarded a first class degree. Brooke is a long standing member of the Bonlab, having dipped into research during his undergraduate years by undertaking a placement working directly with Industry - Rockwood Additives (now BYK Additive).

Currently in the 4th year of study for his PhD, Brooke considers his studies a happy marriage between chemistry and physics; the project involves colloidal synthesis through to microscopy and particle tracking. He works primarily to fabricate interesting anisotropic colloids, an escape from the spherical norm, and analyse their associated behaviour. At the core he works with self-propelling colloids and their motion on the microscopic length scale. He aims to provide insight, whether from a synthesis/fabrication perspective or a colloidal physics standpoint.

In his spare time he enjoys reading, playing guitar and rock climbing with his fiance. Brooke has recently gotten into basic programming and prototyping with arduino and brewing his own beer. As well as this he spends a good deal of time in the kitchen cooking and baking.

His first paper was published in Langmuir in 2015 and describes in detail how "matchstick"-shaped catalytic silica microparticles are made.

His second paper was published in Soft Matter in 2017 and reports on an elegant method to roughen up polymer microspheres. The diffusional behaviour of dispersed roughened microparticles are compared with their spherical analogues.

His third paper was published in Scientific Reports in 2018 and reports on the motion of roughened catalytic microswimmers.


Samuel Wilson-Whitford

4th year phd student

Originally from Leicester, Sam completed his MChem degree at the University of Warwick, spending part of his 3rd year working at Nanyang Technology University in Singapore. Following this he began his PhD in September 2014 with the BonLab. Sam’s work concerns associative rheology modifiers with a particular focus on shear thinning and thixotropic behavior and its applications. The scope of the project extends to polymeric and colloidal modifiers as well as organogels. In his spare time Sam enjoys camping and hiking (specifically in the Lake district) and also building contraptions with his friends. Sam also relaxes by playing his Banjo and visiting ale festivals in and around the East Midlands and Warwickshire.

Patrik Olsson

4th year phd student

Patrik started his Masters in chemistry at the University of Warwick in 2010.  During his undergraduate studies he temporarily joined the BonLab as part of the Undergraduate Research Support Scheme (URSS) as part of a project to fabricate anisotropic particles via emulsion and dispersion polymerization techniques.  

In 2014 he graduated and began his PhD in the BonLab, sponsored by Unilever.
Now in his 4th year of research, Patrik’s project consists of synthesising and characterising colloidal particles, as well as looking for behaviour which may find uses in real world applications.  His work focuses on utilising calcium carbonate particles as templates for the addition of silica- or carbon-based polymers to form core-shell structures and the removing the core to produce hollow particles with chemistries and morphologies not currently directly accessible.  He is currently working on altering the chemistry of these hollow objects to influence their behaviour towards each other and surfaces.
During his free time Patrik likes to play guitar and games, as well as experiment in his home lab (the kitchen).

His first paper was published in Food and Function in 2013 entitled: High internal phase agar hydrogel dispersions in cocoa butter and chocolate as a route towards reducing fat content


Andrea Lotierzo

4th year PhD student

Andrea did his master degree in Industrial Chemistry in Milan, Italy. From October 2015 he is a PhD student at the BonLab.  At the moment Andrea is working on pickering emulsion polymerization to make complex supracolloidal particles to enhance the physico-chemical properties of coatings and paints. In his free time he loves running, watching films and TV-shows and reading fantasy books and comics.

His first paper for the BonLab was published in Polymer Chemistry in 2017 and reports an in-depth mechanistic study of Pickering Emulsion Polymerization.

His second paper was published in ACS MacroLetters in 2017 and reports on the concept of using methacrylate-based macromonomers successfully as RAFT-agents in Polymerization Induced Self-Assembly (PISA) processes.

His third paper was published in Green Chemistry in 2018 and reports on innovations fabrication of porous materials by using the assembly of colloidal latex particles as a concept.

Matt Donald

3rd year phd student

Matt, an avid football fan and real ale enthusiast, started his PhD in October 2016 after graduating from the University of Warwick with a 2.1 MChem degree. His 4th year MChem project looked at the process of Polymerisation induced self-assembly, utilising RAFT polymerisation to obtain complex micellar morphologies.

Matt is currently working on a new branch of stabilisers in the suspension polymerisation of Vinyl Chloride monomer (VCM). Poly (Vinyl Chloride) (PVC) is the third-most widely produced synthetic polymer worldwide, however is under strict regulations, due to the toxicity of the precursor, VCM. Manufacturers must do all they can to remove the VCM from the produced PVC, a process which is made much easier if the PVC is porous. Current technology see’s Vinyl Chloride droplets stabilised in a continuous water phase, by Poly(Vinyl Alcohol)’s (PVA’s). Typically two PVA stabilising agents will be employed, One of high hydrolysis which will sit at the VCM/water interface to afford colloidal stability and a second with a lower degree of hydrolysis, which is wetted more by the VCM, and can start to influence the internal grain morphology. Matt is looking to improve this process by investigating new supracolloidal stabilising agents. Matt hopes to get a better understanding of the processes involved, and as a result help to optimise the formulation. 

Josh Booth

2nd year PhD student


After graduated from the University of Manchester in 2013, Josh spent the next three years in industry, where he was responsible for the manufacture of polymer resins for dental applications. In 2016, Josh started a Polymer Chemistry MSc course at the University of Warwick and joined the BonLab to work on a project using controlled heterogeneous polymerisation techniques to synthesise polymers for rheology modifiers.

In 2017, Josh graduated from the course with a distinction and continued his work in the group as a PhD student. Josh’s current project is focused upon designing complex colloids for supracolloidal photonic films.

Josh is an avid cyclist and a lover of motorsport. He also enjoys hiking, visiting art galleries and attending music gigs.

Wai Hin Lee


1st year phd student

Wai Hin previously graduated from the University of Surrey and worked on the fabrication of anion-exchange membranes for alkaline fuel cells. Later, he undertook the MSc in Polymer Chemistry at the University of Warwick. For his master project, he joined BonLab (April 2018) and researched on the synthesis of crosslinked nanoparticles via macromonomer-controlled radical polymerization and their use as stabilisers in emulsion polymerization.

In October 2018, he started his PhD on preparing graphene oxide nanocomposite materials via heterogeneous polymerization. This project focuses on the functionalization and colloidal assembly of this hybrid material into complex morphologies, as well as tailoring the properties in waterborne materials.

Sarah-Jayne McGinley

1st year phd student

Sarah graduated from Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh in June 2018 with a first class MChem degree. Her MChem project looked into the effects of physical ageing on polymers and nanocomposites. She then joined BonLab as a PhD student in October 2018. Her project involves the study of pickering emulsion polymerisations utilising pure and modified laponite clay. The clay can then be used in with high molecular weight silicones and alkyds in applications such as paints and soft touch materials. In her free time, Sarah enjoys baking and watching films.

Yuan-Zhi Li

1st year phd student

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Yuan-Zhi graduated from Southern University of Science and Technology (SUSTech), Shenzhen, China in June 2017 with bachelor degree. During his bachelor study, he finished an AI project about ‘An Automatic News Analysis and Opinion Sharing System for Exchange Rate Analysis’ and took part in a chemistry project about ‘Total Synthesis of Nature Product: Cyclocitrinol’. His thesis focused on the the relationship between morphology and rheology of PMMA/PCHMA blends compatibilized with block copolymer.

He is the joint PhD student of Warwick and SUSTech and joined BonLab in October 2018. His PhD study involves the research on graphene oxide/polymer nanocomposites. Graphene oxide has water solubility and good performance in mechanics and electricity. He expects that his study will be beneficial to the application such as engineering composites. In daily time, Yuan-Zhi is an amateur computer programmer and enjoys reading very much.

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Nathan Demonte

MCHEM researcher

Nathan joined BonLab in October 2018 as an MChem undergraduate student. His project is focused upon the coacervation between branched copolymers.

During his free time he enjoys playing games and cooking with friends.

Katherine Fisher

MCHEM researcher

Katherine is a final year MChem student who joined BonLab in October 2018 researching polyurea microcapsules with a renewable twist. She has previously worked abroad for Henkel in Germany, synthesising and characterising polyurethane adhesives. In her free time, she is a sewist and boardgame enthusiast. 


Charles Tkaczyk

MCHEM researcher

Originally from Lublin, Poland, Charles moved to Sheffield at the age of 9, where he completed his GCSEs and A-levels. He started his undergraduate degree in MChem chemistry in October 2015. In the summer of 2018, Charles interned at RBT in the microbiology labs where he worked on development of alcohol-free disinfectants.

As of October 2018 Charles has been working in the BonLab on utilizing particle tracking, DLS, and a capillary rheometer to measure the viscosity and rheological properties of complex fluids with a focus on coacervates.


Jonas Bouhlal

undergraduate researcher

Originally from Tampere, Finland, Jonas started his studies in the MChem degree stream in 2017 after finishing his studies in the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program and completing a year in the Finnish military. He joined the team in November 2018 supporting research in emulsion polymerization.

In his free time he enjoys sports in the form of swimming, running and competitive lifesaving. He is also an active member of ChemSoc and can be often found giving first aid at SU events.

Alumni PhDs

Brooke Longbottom

Ross Jaggers

Robert Bell

Robert Young 

Holly Roebuck (McKenzie)

Rong Chen

Adam Morgan

Thomas Skelhon

Yunhua Chen

Gabit Nurumbetov

Nicholas Ballard

Andrew Edwards

Andrew Ross

Roberto Teixeira

Richard Cave

Catheline Colard

Patrick Colver

Christopher Parmenter

Charlene Wager

Dianne Youngman

Laurence Georges Dit-Rap

Alumni Post Docs

Ross Jaggers

Baolei Zhu

Corinna Preuss (International Newton Fellow)

Yunhua Chen 

Catherine Cooper

Andrew Ross

Adam Morgan

Nadia Grossiord

Nicole Jagielski

Tao Chen

Severine Cauvin

Alumni MScs

Jacob Punter

Andrés Richards

Christopher Parkins