SilviaPrincipal Investigator

Dr Silvia Díez-González 

Dr. Silvia Díez-González received her MSci in organic chemistry from the Universidad del País Vasco (Spain) and the Université Paris XI (France) in 2000 and her Ph.D on organosilicon chemistry from the Université Paris XI under the supervision of Dr Luis Blanco.

After two post-doctoral stays with Professors Steve Nolan and Feliu Maseras, Silvia first joined the Department of Chemistry at Imperial as part of the first promotion of Imperial College Junior Research Fellows, where she is currently a Senior Lecturer in Catalysis.

For more information, visit Silvia's website

Postgraduate students

Shuai YANG, 2nd Year PhD  

Shuai is from China, and completed his undergraduate degree in Chemistry at University of Vermont and then a master degree in Chemistry at University of Leeds. During that time he completed a research project with professor Visuvanathar Sridharan on iridium-catalysed reductive 1,3-dipolar cycloaddition reactions of tertiary amides. Shuai started his PhD studies in June 2020 on a project focused on developing copper(I) catalysis.

Outside of chemistry, Shuai likes making cocktails, cooking, traveling and reading novels.

Raul PACHECO MUINO, 2nd Year PhD 

Originally from Venezuela, Raul obtained his bachelor’s degree in chemistry at Queen’s University Belfast in 2019. After 2 years in industry working as a R&D chemist at MOF Technologies, he returned to education and obtained hisMaster’s Degree at the University of Liverpool, where he completed a research project on the electrochemical characterisation of a novel cathode material for magnesium batteries under the supervision of Dr Troy Manning. Raul started his PhD in October 2022 with funding from AstraZenec and his project focuses on the exploration of deep eutectic solvents for synthetic applications.

Outside of chemistry Raul enjoys travelling, learning languages, reading history, and cooking.

The PRESTON, CDT student

Thea studied at the University of Bristol (2018-2022) and graduated with a First class MSci degree in Chemistry. Her final year project was in the Pringle group and focused on phosphite ligand synthesis to be applied in rhodium-catalysed hydroformylation of 1-hexene.

After taking a year out, she has started studying at Imperial as part of the CDT React programme in September 2023, with her project co-supervised by Silvia, James Bull and Kim Jelfs. Her project focuses on ligand parameterisation for Cu-catalysed cross-coupling reactions. Thea enjoys exploring London, crochet and trying new pubs! 

 Steve GONG, MRes in Catalysis 

Steve is from China and completed his BSc degree in University College London. He is currently a MRes student in Catalysis. His project focuses on light-activated coatings for the abatement of nitrogen oxides in city air. This is a collaboration with Dr Andreas Kafizas.

Outside of chemistry Steve enjoys travelling and baking.”

Undergraduate students

Cristiana DARIE, MSci student

Cristiana began studying for an MSci in Chemistry in 2020 and completed a UROP project with the Greenaway Lab at Imperial in summer 2023 focused on the design and synthesis of liquid crystalline porous organic cages. Her MSci research project will delve into the use of deep eutectic solvents as non-traditional solvents for organic syntheses, such as oxidative dehydrogenation reactions of heterocyclic compounds.

Outside of the lab, Cristiana enjoys reading and immersing in musical culture, as well as travelling for landscape photography

Annabelle HIGGS, MSci student

Annabelle is from the UK and joined Imperial in 2020 to study for an MSci in Chemistry and this year is undertaking a final year project investigating the reactivity and synthetic potential of 1,2,3-triazolines.

Outside of Chemistry Annabelle enjoys music and sings in Imperial College Choir and plays clarinet with Imperial College Wind Band.

Florence BURT, BSc student

Florence joined Imperial in 2021 to study a BSc in Chemistry and is now pursuing her final year project on the oxidation of heterocycles with H2O2 and different solvent systems.

Outside of chemistry, Florence enjoys sewing, cooking and fermentation.





Dr Lalita Radtanajiravong (April 2016 - July 2020)

'Metal-free valorisation of propargylic alcohols and azides'

She moved on to: Lecturer in Organic Chemistry at University of Phayao (Thailand)





Dr Filip Sebest (Oct 2014 - Sept 2018)

'Metal-free dipolar cycloaddition reactions for sustainable nitrogen-containing heterocycles'

He moved on to: Marie-Curie Sklodowska postdoctoral fellowship in Germany




Dr Ethan Richards (Oct 2014 - Sept 2018)

'Bidentate N-heterocyclic carbenes as efficient ligands for Ullmann-type couplings'

He moved on to: Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government





Dr Benjamin Zelenay (Sept 2013 - August 2017)

‘Structural and catalytic studies on novel copper complexes’

He moved on to: Operation Chemist at Lonza





Dr Sarah Gates (Nov 2012 - July 2016)

‘Investigating metal formyl complexes for homogeneous syngas conversion’

He moved on to: Policy Adviser at DCMS





Dr John M. Collinson (Oct 2010 - August 2014)

‘Immobilised N-heterocyclic carbene metal complexes in catalysis’

He moved on to: Chemist at Johnson Matthey




Dr Steven Lal (Nov 2009 - July 2013)

‘Metal complexes as catalysts for the synthesis of heterocycles’

He moved on to: Senior Scientist at Lonza