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Centre for Defence Chemistry

Centre for Defence Chemistry

The Centre for Defence Chemistry is the focus for the chemical sciences at Cranfield. We provide a comprehensive range of analytical facilities for the analysis and characterisation of a wide range of materials including explosives, fuels, polymers, radioactive materials, metals and non-metals. In addition, we have well equipped chemical laboratories where new materials can be synthesised. 

Our contribution is particularly strong in the teaching of chemical sciences on a wide range of courses that encompass:

  • Explosives science and technologies.
  • Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN).
  • Fuel science.
  • Forensic engineering and science.

Our staff are from a variety of backgrounds including academia, industry, research and government establishments. They offer a broad range of expertise and experience in their teaching, research and consultancy activities. As acknowledged experts in their field they are frequently approached by government, commercial and media organisations for assistance and advice.


  • Our impact and facilities

  • Our people

    • Name: Professor Jackie Akhavan
      Job Title: Professor of Explosive Chemistry
      Areas of expertise:
      Defence and Security, Explosives and Munitions, Defence Test and Evaluation, Counter IED
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    • Name: Mr Mark Carpenter
      Job Title: Research Fellow
      Areas of expertise:
      Energy, Conventional and Advanced fuels, Manufacturing, Composites, Defence and Security, Fuels, Additional Area, Structures and Materials
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    • Name: Mr Jim Clements
      Job Title: Senior Research Fellow
      Areas of expertise:
      Defence and Security, Explosives and Munitions, Additional Area, Instrumentation, Sensors and Measurement Science
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    • Name: Dr Alex Contini
      Job Title: Senior Research Fellow
      Areas of expertise:
      Defence and Security, Explosives and Munitions, Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Defence
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    • Name: Dr Licia Dossi
      Job Title: Research Fellow
      Areas of expertise:
      Health, Smart Materials, Defence and Security, Explosives and Munitions, Additional Area, Structures and Materials
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    • Name: Dr Mike Williams
      Job Title: Senior Lecturer
      Areas of expertise:
      Defence and Security, Explosives and Munitions, Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Defence
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    • Name: Dr Monir Moniruzzaman
      Job Title: Senior Research Fellow
      Areas of expertise:
      Defence and Security, Explosives and Munitions
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    • Name: Dr Xiao Fang
      Job Title: Senior Research Fellow
      Areas of expertise:
      Environment, Monitoring and Environmental Informatics, Defence and Security, Explosives and Munitions, Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Defence
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    • Name: Ms Sally Gaulter
      Job Title: Senior Research Fellow
      Areas of expertise:
      Manufacturing, Composites, Casting Technologies, Defence Manufacturing, Defence and Security, Explosives and Munitions, Defence Test and Evaluation
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    • Name: Dr Philip Gill
      Job Title: Lecturer
      Areas of expertise:
      Manufacturing, Defence Manufacturing, Defence and Security, Explosives and Munitions, Defence Test and Evaluation, Additional Area, Safety, Resilience, Risk and Reliability, Instrumentation, Sensors and Measurement Science, Forensic Science
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    • Name: Dr Guillaume Kister
      Job Title: Research Fellow
      Areas of expertise:
      Manufacturing, Composites, Sensor Technologies
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    • Name: Dr Ernst-Christian Koch
      Job Title: Senior Lecturer in Defence Chemistry
      Areas of expertise:
      Defence and Security, Explosives and Munitions, Counter IED
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    • Name: Dr James Padfield
      Job Title: Research Fellow
      Areas of expertise:
      Defence and Security, Explosives and Munitions
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    • Name: Mr Christopher Stennett
      Job Title: Group Leader - Explosives Science Group
      Areas of expertise:
      Defence and Security, Explosives and Munitions, Defence Test and Evaluation, Counter IED
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    • Name: Mrs Tracey Temple
      Job Title: Lecturer in Environmental Science
      Areas of expertise:
      Defence and Security, Explosives and Munitions
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    • Name: Dr Colleen Williams
      Job Title: Research Fellow
      Areas of expertise:
      Health, Health Risks from Hazardous Substances, Defence and Security, Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Defence, Fuels
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  • Postgraduate degrees

    • Explosives Ordnance Engineering

      Provides an advanced academic background to enable students to effectively approach demanding technical projects in the field of explosives and explosives ordnance engineering

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  • Professional Development (CPD)