group photo

The Arnold and Love groups June 2016, and the kind of fire we don't mind having.


We make and study reactive and unusual complexes of the rare earths, actinides, and early transition metals. We use these to make new catalysts for difficult transformations such as hydrocarbon C-H bond activation and carbon dioxide chemistry. Our labs have state-of-the-art equipment for the synthesis of highly air-sensitive complexes, and the study of their reactivity towards small, inert molecules, particularly for the development of new homogeneous catalysts.

The website for the Chemical Imbalance project is finally up and running again.

We welcome speculative applications at any time of year to study towards a PhD or spend a postdoctoral research period in our laboratories. See also our Criticat Centre for Doctoral Training for funded PhD projects related to sustainable catalysis.

EaStCHEM School of Chemistry, University of Edinburgh, the King's Buildings, Edinburgh, EH9 3FJ, UK. +44 (0)131 650 5429



Nov '16: Well done Megan Seymour on winning 'I'm a scientist, get me out of Here' and causing a twitterstorm.

Sept '16:Congratulations to Michal Dutkiewicz on passing his PhD viva...and with his second paper comparing organometallic uranium, neptunium, and plutonium binding to the uranyl ion just out in Angewandte Chemie.

June '16: Many congratulations to former PDRA Dr Rianne Lord, who is starting a lectureship at the University of Bradford.

May '16: Our work on the first fully characterised neptunium (III) organometallics, their reduction to the first formally Np(II) complex, and unusual molecular and electronic structures and covalency is published in Nature Chemistry.

Apr '16: Polly talks in the Sunday Times about STEMming the leaky pipeline and A Chemical Imbalance.

Mar '16: Polly discusses whether female scientists make good politicians on BBC R4's Today programme.

Feb '16: Welcome Dr Yat-Ming So, coming to us from Hong Kong to work with us on cerium chemistry.

Jan '16: Polly discusses the completion of the 7th row of the PT with Eddie Mair on BBC R4's PM programme.

Jan '16: Good luck to Dr. Johann Hlina as he returns to the TU Graz, Austria to finish his Schroedinger Fellowship...and with a JACS paper about M-M bonding just out (March).

Dec' 15: Fortress tops the list. Our EPSRC proposal to use pressure to study bonding covalency and reactivity in the f-block is funded.

Dec '15: A Chemical Imbalance is discussed at the 2015 Pacifichem meeting with two ACS past-presidents, Profs E. Ann Nalley and Marinda P. Li Wu.

Nov '15: Funded PhD studentships now available to start next autumn: Work on new Pacman-type uranium chemistry in collaboration with Prof J B Love's group, or on new catalysts made from bimetallic f-block aryloxide complexes as part of the Criticat Centre for Doctoral Training CDT.

Nov '15: Congratulations to the PLAgroup team on winning first prize in the poster competition at the Nuclear Waste Decommissioning conference held this year in Glasgow’s Science Centre. The winning students are Jordann Wells, Megan Seymour, and Jamie Purkis.

Nov '15: Congratulations to Dr Andy Fyfe on passing his viva.

Aug '15: The first bis(imido) thorium complex, and made by a simple, and we hope general, route.

Jul '15: Kezia Dugdale visits our labs to discuss female role models in science, and the importance of science to the Scottish economy.

- modified 21/12/16 - Edinburgh Chemistry - PLAgroup home - group wiki - copyright Polly L Arnold -