The School of Chemistry is one of the top research Chemistry Departments in Australia. The School has about 36 research groups, each headed by a member of the academic staff, spanning a wide range of Chemistry disciplines with identified areas of research strength including:
The School is well-equipped with modern research instrumentation including major research facilities for NMR Spectroscopy, Mass Spectrometry, X-ray Crystallography, Optical Spectroscopy, Electrochemistry, High Pressure Liquid Chromatography, Analytical and Preparative Chromatography, and High Performance Computing. Research infrastructure (that underpins and supports all research programs) includes in-house mechanical and electronic workshops. The Scitech Library (as a branch of the main University Library) holds all of the main Chemistry titles and also provides on-line access to national and international databases.
The School's staff and students have received a number of research awards. Recent highlights include:
- The election of Emeritus Professor Noel Hush to the US National Academy of Sciences, for his excellence in original scientific research.
- The award of the inaugural AMMA Medal and the 2010 RACI Physical Chemistry Division Medal to Professor Leo Radom.
- The award of the inaugural McAulay-Hope Prize for Original Biophysics to Dr Ron Clarke.
- The award of a NSW Young Tall Poppy Award to Dr Richard Payne for his work on the use of organic chemistry to discover new drugs for the treatment of tuberculosis and cancer vaccines.
- The award of a NSW Young Tall Poppy Awards to both A/Professor Sébastien Perrier and Dr Tim Schmidt.
- The award of the Craig Medal to Emeritus Professor Len Lindoy by the Australian Academy of Science.
- The award of the RACI's H G Smith Medal to Professor Jeff Reimers and the Rennie Memorial Medal to A/Professor Sébastien Perrier.
- The Welch Award in Chemistry awarded to Emeritus Professor Noel Hush in recognition of his contributions to understanding electron transfer and molecular electronics.
- The award of L'Oreal Australia For Women in Science Award to Dr Deanna D'Alessandro.
In 2011, members of the School received over $7M in new research funding, leading to a total of 33 Discovery Grants, 8 Fellowships and 5 Linkage Grants from the Australian Research Council, totaling (with other grants) $11.9M in competitive research funding.
In 2012 we have over 55 research-only staff as well as more than 40 honorary and visiting staff all involved the School's various research programs. Also in 2012 we have 100 graduate students enrolled in higher degrees in the School of Chemistry as well as over 30 honours students undertaking a year of research to complete their undergraduate degree programs. This large cohort of research students and staff fosters a strong and vibrant environment for research and this continues to be a real strength of the School.