Imperial College London

Professor DameJuliaHiggins

Faculty of EngineeringDepartment of Chemical Engineering

Senior Research Investigator
 
 
 
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Contact

 

+44 (0)20 7594 5565j.higgins

 
 
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Assistant

 

Mrs Sarah Payne +44 (0)20 7594 5567

 
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Location

 

Room 510ACE ExtensionSouth Kensington Campus

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Summary

 

Summary

Biography

Date
Role
2009- Council Member, Imperial College London
2009- Chair, Trustee Board of Imperial College London Students'''' Union
2007- Emeritus Professor and Senior Research Investigator, Chemical Engineering Department, Imperial College London
2006-2007 Principal of the Faculty of Engineering, Imperial College London
2003-2007 Chair, Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
2002-2006
Director of the Graduate School in Engineering and Physical Sciences of Imperial College – a part time post
2001-2006
Foreign Secretary and Vice-president of the Royal Society
1989-2007
Professor of Polymer Science, Chemical Engineering Department, Imperial College London.
1993-1997
Dean, City and Guilds College.
1985-1989
Reader in Polymer Science, Chemical Engineering Department, Imperial College London.
1976-1985
Lecturer, Chemical Engineering Department, Imperial College London.
1973-1976
Physicist, Institut Laue-Langevin, Grenoble, France.
1972-1973
Research Fellow, Institut Charles Sadron, Strasbourg, France.
1968-1972
SRC Research Fellow, Department of Chemistry, University of Manchester, UK.
1966-1968
Physics Teacher, Mexborough Grammar School, Yorkshire, UK.
1964-1968
D.Phil in Physical Chemistry, University of Oxford, UK.
1961-1964
BA Physics, Somerville College, Oxford, UK.

Research interests

My research has concerned aspects of the behaviour of complex materials, and particularly polymers, in terms of their molecular structure, organisation and motion, especially the application of neutron scattering techniques to such problems. Neutrons are unique probes for polymeric systems both because of their wavelength and energy characteristics and because isotopic substitution of deuterium for hydrogen allows whole molecules or parts of molecules to be highlighted within a sample in order to understand their behaviour. Of course other laboratory based spectroscopic and scattering techniques are also used to give a complete picture.

A current focus is mixtures of polymers. Some binary mixtures are miscible at a molecular level but only over a limited range of temperature and composition. One large area focusses on understanding these miscibility limits in terms of the molecular components and their interactions, studying the process of separation into two co-existing phases when these limits are exceeded, and in particular studying the effect of flow on the limits and the phase separation process. Another is the study of interfaces between polymers - either observing the interdiffusion as they form in order to understand bonding and adhesion of composites, or looking at the activity of copolymer additives as interfacial agents to improve properties of blends of thermodynamically immiscible polymers.

Selected research projects

  1. "Small Angle Neutron Scattering From the Highly Interacting Polymer Mixture TMPC/PSd: No Evidence of Spatially Dependent χ Parameter."  João T. Cabral and Julia S. Higgins, Macromolecules, 42, 9528-9536 (2009).
  2. "A Simple Approach to Polymer Mixture Miscibility."  Julia S. Higgins, Jane E. G. Lipson, Ronald P. White, Phil. Trans. R. Soc. A., 368, 1009-1025  (2010)
  3. "Thermodynamics of TMPC/PSd/Fullerene Nanocomposites: SANS Study."  Yang Choo Chua, Alica Chan, Him-Cheng Wong, Julia S. Higgins and João Cabral, Macromolecules, 43, 9578-9582, (2010)
  4. "Effect of Deuterium Subsitution on the Physical Properties of Polymer Melts and Blends" Jane Lipson, Ronald White and Julia Higgins, Macromolecules, 43, 4287-4293 (2010)

Links

Selected Publications

Journal Articles

White RP, Lipson JEG, Higgins JS, 2010, Effect of Deuterium Substitution on the Physical Properties of Polymer Melts and Blends, Macromolecules, Vol:43, ISSN:0024-9297, Pages:4287-4293

More Publications