Susan Perkin is  Professor of Physical Chemistry and Fellow of Trinity College, University of Oxford. She earned her DPhil in 2006 studying with Jacob Klein , working both in Oxford and at the Weizmann Institute, and with a Senior Scholarship from Balliol College, Oxford. She was also a Junior Research Fellow at Merton College from 2005-2008. She moved to UCL in London (2007-2012, as RCUK Fellow then Lecturer) where she set up a laboratory and research group to work on ionic liquids and liquid interfaces. In 2012 she was appointed to a faculty position in the Physical & Theoretical Chemistry Laboratory, University of Oxford, and in 2019 awarded the title of (full) Professor. Current interests include electrostatics in concentrated electrolytes and ionic liquids, molecular mechanisms of friction and lubrication, field effects on confined liquids, and controlling surface forces. In the past several years Susan has been awarded a Starting Grant from the ERC (2015), the Harrison-Meldola Memorial Prize (2016) from the Royal Society of Chemistry, a Philip Leverhulme Prize (2016) from The Leverhulme Trust, and the Soft Matter Lectureship (2018) from the journal Soft Matter. In 2020 she was awarded a Consolidator Grant from the ERC. Susan serves as member (2013-) and co-chair(2020-) of the Royal Society's Research Grants Board (Physical Sciences), member (2018-) and chair (2021-) of the RSC Faraday Standing Committee on Conferences, member of the Royal Society Newton International Fellowships committee, editorial board member of Chemical Society Reviews and editorial advisory board member of Soft Matter.




Dr James Hallett

James did his PhD at the University of Bristol as part of the Bristol Centre for Functional Nanomaterials. His PhD work, under the supervision of Professors Paul Bartlett and Robert Richardson, focused on the use of scattering techniques to study the dynamics and structure of charged nanoparticles in salt-free conditions. Following his PhD he completed a postdoc in the group of Dr Paddy Royall, also at the university of Bristol, using confocal microscopy techniques to study dynamic arrest in colloidal materials. He joined the Perkin group in 2018 to study the effect of confinement on out-of-equilibrium liquids. In his spare time James is a bassist in a rock band, but also enjoys craft beer, running, cycling and DIY.



Astrid Southam

Astrid was born and raised in Geneva, Switzerland, before moving to the UK to complete her MChem at the University of Nottingham; she spent the third year of her studies at the University of Hong Kong, working on new electronic transitions of platinum monofluoride. Her fourth year Master’s project explored the effect of ionic liquids on surface reactions in Ultra-High Vacuum. She joined the group in 2017 for her PhD, during which she is looking to focus on the behaviour of ionic liquids confined to the nanoscale and how they are affected by electric fields. In her free time, Astrid enjoys climbing, trail running, cycling and tea.


Hannah Hayler

Hannah was born and brought up in Surrey and completed her MChem at Durham University. Her Master’s project focused on analysing medieval manuscripts with visible and infrared spectroscopy. She joined the group in 2018 for her DPhil, where she will be investigating underscreening. Outside of the lab, she enjoys baking, walking and cheerleading.




Tim Groves

Tim spent his childhood in Sheffield and came to Oxford for his undergraduate in 2015. He completed his part II in the Perkin group investigating the structure and forces present in thin films of water-in-salt electrolyte. He began his DPhil in 2019 and is interested in highly concentrated aqueous electrolytes. Outside of work, Tim enjoys baking and reading.



Aurora Guerrini

Aurora was born and raised in Trinidad before moving to England for 6th form and to complete her Bsc In Chemistry at King’s College London. She joined the group for her DPhil in Physical and Theoretical Chemistry where she will be investigating nanolubrication mechanisms in mixtures of Ionic Liquids. In her free time, Aurora enjoys reading, visiting museums, travelling and debating.

Joining us in Michaelmas 2020:

Daniel Percival 

Alex Jackson 

2012 arrival in Oxford  (Alex, Laura & Kevin, Rosa & Susa, Nitya & Gita)

2014 croquet battle (Liguo, Alex, Susan, Ellie, Nico, Florian, Chris, Sam)

2018 in the park (Romain, Ellie, James, Susan, Marco, Carla, Astrid, Natasha, Christophe)

2018 Christmas Dinner (Weichao, Romain, Carla, Tim, Xiaoyue, Susan, Ellie, James, Astrid, Hannah)