School of Chemical Sciences
Academic staff- Analytical Chemistry
Academic biographyAssociate Professor, School of Chemical Sciences
Principal Investigator, National Centre for Sensor Research and DCU Water Institute.
Orcid ID: 0000-0003-2982-8752
I am currently Associate Dean for Teaching and Learning in the Faculty of Science and Health in DCU.
My research interests focus on the development of intelligent analysis tools and the application of analytical chemistry for the investigation of chemical and biochemical processes in the world around us.
Specific research projects from my group involve the development and application of innovative technologies for investigative and regulatory monitoring of known and emerging contaminants in soil and water:
- the Interreg funded project Monitool: New tools for monitoring the chemical status in transitional and coastal waters under the WFD (2017-2020) aims to develop Environmental Quality Standards (EQS) for the evaluation of dissolved and labile metal concentrations in transitional and coastal waters so that passive sampling technologies can be incorporated into European policy for water monitoring. I coordinate this project which has partners from 9 countries from Scotland to the Canary Islands.
- I lead the EPA funded project IMPACT: Innovative monitoring to prioritise contaminants of emerging concern for Ireland (2017-2020). This project will provide a detailed insight into the occurrence, fate and impact of contaminants of emerging concern in Irish receiving waters, establishing a prioritised list of contaminants of emerging concern in Ireland along with a framework to risk assess these compounds, enabling future policy development to protect and enhance our water quality
- FARM-ECOS: Farming and Natural Resources: Measures for Ecological Sustainability (2016-2020) is a DAFM funded project to identify and outline the evidence base for novel, cost-effective measures to protect and enhance farmland biodiversity. Identified measures will increase habitat quantity, enhance habitat quality and improve ecological connectivity, from the farm to landscape scale. I am leading task 5, assessing ecosystem health and delivery of selected ecosystem services of farm habitats, using soil parameters, to determine how habitat quantity and quality influences soil quality and nutrient composition, and delivery of selected ecosystem services.
- PROTECTS (Protecting Ecosystem Services Through Sustainable Pesticide Use) is a 4 year DAFM funded project (2018-2022) which will provide baseline information in an Irish context to build towards mitigating the effects of pesticide use on terrestrial ecosystem services, focussing on pollinators and soils. I lead the analysis of pesticide residues in soils and nectar, investigate the potential hazards of pesticide use for bees, and provide recommendations for a soil monitoring programme and how to mitigate any effects on ecosystem services. The project findings will help to ensure that pesticides can be used safely while protecting wildlife, health and the environment, both in Ireland and internationally.
Additional research projects in my group include:
- Development and application of electro active polymers for separation: In collaboration with Dr. Aoife Morrin (DCU), we have developed the first monolithic packing for microchip capillary electrochromatography where critical parameters such as hydrophobicity, ionic interactions and porosity can be controlled for precise selectivity manipulations.
- Elucidation of