Imperial College London

Jay Bullen

Faculty of EngineeringDepartment of Earth Science & Engineering

Research Postgraduate



j.bullen16 Website




2.52 KRoyal School of MinesSouth Kensington Campus





I am a PhD researcher working in the Earth Science and Engineering department (Imperial), and with the Center for Doctoral Training in the Advanced Characterisation of Materials (London Centre for Nanotechnology). 

Send me an email if you'd like to discuss possible collaborations.

Safe drinking water - arsenic sensing and remediation

My PhD research (Investigations into the chemistry of arsenite with bifunctional metal oxides) investigates new emerging technologies for arsenic sensing and removal. Exposure to elevated levels of arsenic in drinking water affects millions of people worldwide, with risks from a whole hosts of diseases including cancer.

I look at TiO2/Fe2O3 composite materials that act as both photocatalysts AND sorbents, to help treat arsenite - As(III) - contaminated waters in Bangladesh and India. I am both developing a Surface Complexation Model to investigate adsorption of arsenic over this composite material, and investigating the kinetic mechanisms of As(III) photooxidation.

Measuring changes in the oxidation state of arsenic, As(III) --> As(V), is very challenging. I use Anodic Stripping Voltammetry with a gold microwire electrode to achieve sub-ppb detection limits.

We are also developing a chemosorbent resin syringe filter to allow untrained users to speciate the different oxidation states of arsenic during research in the field (i.e. at the drinking well sites). And I am cross-calibrating this technique with portable voltammetry.


Proficient in

  • Low Energy Ion Scattering (LEIS)
  • Electrochemical measurement of arsenic
  • ICP-MS
  • BET surface area
  • XRD
  • Zeta potential and size distribution
  • Potentiometric titration
  • TEM
  • UV-vis spectroscopy
  • Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM)

Let's collaborate together !

Just send me an email if you think that (a) our research interests overlap, or (b) I can assist you with a technique.

Possibilities include

  • Speciation and measurement of trace metals (electrochemical or ICP-MS)
  • Advanced characterisation of materials
  • Water decontamination with column and photooxidation studies



Bullen J, Lapinee C, Salaün P, et al., On the application of photocatalyst-sorbent composite materials for arsenic(III) remediation: Insights from kinetic adsorption modelling, Journal of Environmental Chemical Engineering, ISSN:2213-3437

Bullen JC, Torres-Huerta A, Salaün P, et al., 2020, Portable and rapid arsenic speciation in synthetic and natural waters by an As(V)-selective chemisorbent, validated against anodic stripping voltammetry, Water Research, Vol:175, ISSN:0043-1354, Pages:1-11

Kirby ME, Bullen JC, Hanif MD, et al., 2019, Determining the effect of pH on iron oxidation kinetics in aquatic environments: exploring a fundamental chemical reaction to grasp the significant ecosystem implications of iron bioavailability, Journal of Chemical Education, Vol:97, ISSN:0021-9584, Pages:215-220

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