Role in the Centre
Eric Waclawik is a physical chemist. He leads a research group at QUT that specialises in materials chemistry, the study of photodeposition, nanocrystal hybrids, quantum dots, and nanowires. Within QUT’s Centre for Materials Science, Eric contributes to research programs that bridge the fields of materials science, spectroscopy and photonics, with a recent focus on exploitation of the plasmonic effect of noble metal nanoparticles toward fine chemical synthesis and development of green chemical processes. Techniques developed by his group demonstrated how photolytic control of plasmonic metal-precursor concentrations can modify kinetics of plasmonic metal nanoparticle photodeposition on metal oxide semiconductor nanomaterial surfaces. This influences the size, shape and inter-particle distances of plasmonic nanoparticles and maximise field enhancement during photocatalysis, the transfer of energy during photocatalysis and the study of photocatalytic reaction kinetics and mechanisms. He publishes on these topics in collaboration with national and international experts based in universities and research institutes in China, Italy, Germany and the UK.
Eric was awarded his PhD in the field of gas-phase molecular spectroscopy from Flinders University in 1997 (PhDsSupervisor – Prof. Warren D. Lawrance). He continued his spectroscopic studies as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Toronto in 1997, studying surface photochemistry with Prof. D. Jamie Donaldson, and then in the field of high-resolution molecular spectroscopy (cavity microwave spectroscopy) at the University of Exeter with Prof. Anthony Legon, F.R.S. (1998 – 2000). In mid-2000, he returned to Australia, where he developed a laboratory course of nanotechnology experiments at Flinders University and was a lecturer at Flinders University until 2003. In 2003 he joined QUT, where he is now an Associate Professor of Physical Chemistry and leads a research program studying the controlled growth and deposition of inorganic semiconductor nanocrystals, quantum dots and their applications. His research at QUT has been supported by $5.4M in funding from the Australian Research Council, the US Air Force Asian Office of Aerospace Research and Development, the Queensland State Government and the private sector. He has co-authored 125 peer-reviewed journal articles and has co-supervised 24 research student completions since 2007, with four also receiving a QUT Outstanding Thesis Award. These students have gone on to achieve high profile careers in academia in Australia and China and in high-end industry and government research organisations in Australia, Singapore and Italy.
“ZnO Colloid Crystal Facet-Type Determines both Au Photodeposition and Photocatalytic Activity” De Corrado, J.M.; Fernando, J.F.S.; Shortell, M.P.; Poad, B.L.J.; Blanksby, S.J.; Waclawik, E.R. ACS Appl. Nano Mater. 2019, 2, 7856-7869.
“Palladium/Graphitic Carbon Nitride (g‐C3N4) Stabilized Emulsion Microreactor as a Store for Hydrogen from Ammonia Borane for Use in Alkene Hydrogenation” Han, C.; Meng, P.; Waclawik, E.R.; Zhang, C.; Li, X.-H.; Yang, H.; Antonietti, M.; Xu J. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2018, 47, 14857-14861.
“Controlling Au Photodeposition on Large ZnO Nanoparticles” Fernando, J.F.S.; Shortell, M.P.; Noble, C.J.; Harmer, J.R.; Jaatinen, E.A; Waclawik, E.R. ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 2016, 8, 14271-14283.
“Small Gold Nanoparticles as Crystallization ‘catalysts’: Effect of Seed Size and Concentration on Au-ZnO Hetero Nanoparticles” Fernando, J.F.S.; Shortell, M.P.; Vernon, K.C.; Jaatinen, E.A.; Waclawik, E.R. Cryst. Growth Des. 2015, 15(9), 4324-4330.
“An Efficient Photocatalyst Structure: TiO2(B) Nanofibers with a Shell of Anatase Nanocrystals” Yang, D.; Liu, H.; Zheng, Z.; Yuan, Y.; Zhao, J.; Waclawik, E.; Ke, X.; Zhu, H.-Y. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2009, 131(49), 17885-17893.