Dr. Alex Walton

Group Lead
Email: alex.walton@manchester.ac.uk

Alex got his MSci in Physics from Durham University (2005). He then went on to a PhD in Physics at the University of Leeds (2010) with Prof. Stephen Evans looking at the electrical characterisation of single nanowires.

After a postdoc in Leeds for a few years, he moved to a postdoc position with Assoc. Prof. Jeppe Lauritsen at Aarhus University in Denmark (2012). Here he learned about the joys of surface science and the horrors of beamtime. Three years later he landed an academic position as a Research Fellow at Manchester University – focusing on Near-Ambient Pressure XPS.


Dr. Kerry Hazeldine

Email: kerry.hazeldine@manchester.ac.uk

Kerry obtained her BSc in Physics from Aberystwyth University in 2016 where she then joined the Diamond Science and Technology Centre for Doctoral Training which involved an MSc at the University of Warwick where she then returned to Aberystwyth for her PhD. Her PhD studies investigated the surface termination and graphitisation of nanodiamonds utilising photoelectron spectroscopy (PES) characterisation techniques with Prof Andrew Evans.After graduating from her PhD in 2021, Kerry worked as a postdoc using PES techniques to characterise materials for solar cell applications at Aberystwyth University before joining the Walton Group at the start of 2023. Outside of work, Kerry is an avid rugby and F1 fan and likes to spend her spare time trail running in the peaks.


Khadisha Zahra

Email: khadisha.zahra@postgrad.manchester.ac.uk

Khadisha joined the Walton group as a PhD student in 2017. Her research aims to gain a better understanding of the active sites for the Oxygen Reduction Reaction (ORR) in nitrogen doped graphene (N-Gr). This will be done by systematically comparing the electrocatalytic activity at each of the binding sites (pyridinic, pyrrolic and graphitic). Knowledge of their contribution to the ORR would allow industry to tailor growth for optimum performance.

Khadisha got her BSc in Physics (2016) and a MSc in Energy and Power Engineering (2017) from the University of Warwick.

Outside of her research, she also engages with various forms of scientific outreach. Some say too much.

In-situ studies of electrocatalysts using Near-Ambient Pressure XPS

Fred Tinkamanyire


Email: fred.tinkamanyire@postgrad.manchester.ac.uk

Project Tittle: Understanding Catalysts evolution through In situ XPS.

Fred attained MSc. Chemical Engineering with Design from the University of Manchester in 2012. Since then Fred has worked as a process/chemical engineer in UK (Prological Ltd) and overseas specialising in process plant design from conception to front end, process optimisation and continual process improvements, and detailed heat exchanger design for heat recovery systems and energy generation e.g Biomass.

With much desire to go back to research in particular catalysis sector, Fred Joined Dr. Alex Walton’s group in 2019 as a PhD student working on In-situ XPS of Fischer-Tropsch catalysts.

Fred’s spare time has dramatically changed in recent years from watching movies, community outreach and spending time out with friends to watching baby TV and playing hide and seek, but still finds some window of escape!

Kacper Polus


Kacper got his BSc in Chemistry from the University of Manchester. Then he studied for a MSc in Advanced Chemical Sciences at the University of Liverpool, where he studied the mechanical properties of co-polymers of sulfur (which he used to call the yellow gold). As all boring things must come to an end, he then moved on to a PhD with the Walton group at the University of Manchester. Here he will be investigating electrocatalytic activity of graphene (and other 2D materials) with particular focus on oxygen reduction reaction. His work is aiming at analysing the electrocatalyst in operando using near-ambient-pressure X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy.

Eleanor Ender

Email: eleanor.ender@postgrad.manchester.ac.uk

Eleanor attained her MChem degree from the University of Aberdeen in 2019. For her masters project she undertook a placement at the Université de Pau et des Pays de l’Adour in France, where she looked at the bioimaging of trace metal distribution in seaweed cells using NanoSIMS. She then proceeded to work in industry for 3 years, specifically with high pressure systems designed to investigate organic scale formation in crude oil production.

Eleanor joined the Walton group as a PhD student in 2022. Her research will focus on correlative characterisation of electrocatalysts for the Hydrogen Evolution Reaction (HER) using X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS) and NanoSIMS.

Outside of her work, Eleanor enjoys trips to nature and cuddling animals of any kind.



Shiyan Xie – MSc student – summer ’22

Grace Derby – MChem student ’21-’22

Esme Phillips – MChem student ’21-’22

Zoë Henderson – Postdoc – 2019-2021

Conor Bryne – Postdoc – 2019-2021

Boruch Epstein – MChem student ’20-’21

Rose Picciuto – MChem student ’20-’21

Yidan (aka Emma) Zhang – MSc student – summer ’20

Maxim Barchenko – MChem student ’19-’20

Eleanor Banks – MChem student ’19-’20

Tim Smith – MChem student ’18-’19

Amelia Kent – MChem student ’18-’19

Almasa Pasalic – MChem student ’17-’18

Derek Lai – MChem student ’16-’17

Louisa Ting – MSc student – summer ’16