Dr. Ahu Gümrah Parry (née Dumanli) joined the School of Materials as a BP-ICAM Dame Kathleen Lonsdale Research Fellow in January 2019. Her latest work focuses on tailoring shape, size and surface chemistry of nanoparticles (mainly produced from natural and sustainable sources) to fabricate photonic structures via the self-assembly process. She also develops highly porous, high surface area and lightweight hyrdogels and aerogels to use in chemical deposition systems that will be used in selective separation media and catalytic processes. Tuning the self-assembly of nanoparticles and fibrillary structures is very interesting in itself in understanding the materials organization in nature. Ahu also brings further functionalities in these systems by producing nanocomposites with different metal oxides, plasmonic nanoparticles, and functional polymers to extend the application of these systems into energy harvesting systems and sensors.
Ahu studied chemistry in Hacettepe University, Ankara before doing a PhD on controlled production of carbon nanotubes with different morphologies at Sabanci University, Istanbul. In 2008 she joined Alan Windle’s Macromolecular Materials group in Cambridge focusing on the production of cellulosic advanced materials. She was awarded by a Schlumberger Faculty for the Future Fellowship in 2012 and she worked jointly with the Steiner (Physics) and Reisner groups (Chemistry) in the University of Cambridge. In 2014 she took a senior researcher post in the Adolphe Merkle Institute, Fribourg Switzerland before returning to Cambridge to continue her work on biomimetic functional materials as a senior researcher in the Chemistry Department. Before joining the University of Manchester, Ahu worked as a Teaching Fellow in Advanced Characterization Techniques such as High-Resolution Imaging and Scattering Techniques at the Imperial College, London.