Dr Robert B. Hammond


Dr Hammond began his research career as an Associate Scientist working for Shell Research Ltd in the development of novel crop-protection product formulations and additive packages for automotive lubrication oils.  During his academic career he has  developed computation tools facilitating the determination of the atomic-scale structure for materials in powder form.  These tools enable X-ray diffraction data to be combined with observations from Solid State NMR to provide additional restraints during structure refinement.  He has extensive experience using molecular modelling approaches, including the application of molecular dynamics, to investigate the processes of crystal nucleation and growth from solution and the properties of solid particles for materials ranging from pharmaceutical active ingredients and bio-fuels to metal oxide particles and components in nuclear waste-streams.


  • School Director of Postgraduate Studies

Research interests

Nucleation of molecular materials from a solution environment; solution crystallization; molecular solid-state chemistry including lattice defects, predicting impurity segregation in solids, modelling crystal growth on a face specific basis and understanging the role of solvent and impurity species in controlling crystal growth and crystal shape and particle properties.  Polymorphic phase stability as function of particle size and mechanisms of polymorphic phase transformations mediated by solution. Linking molecular dynamics (MD) and discrete element method (DEM) approaches to understand mechanisms of enhancement of properties in nano-dispersions of titania particles in a fluid medium. Using high-level quantum mechanical approaches to predict material properties and refine bespoke atomistic potentials for use in MD simulations. Combining multiple data to refine structural models for example X-ray powder diffraction patterns combined with solid state NMR and other spectroscopic data.

Pharmaceutical product engineering: leading a work programme in the Advance Digital Design of Pharmaceutical Therapeutics (ADDoPT) project that provides physico-chemical parameters from molecular scale modelling as input to a multiscale modelling paradigm that addresses the challenges associated with unit operations such as crystallisation, filtration washing and drying, milling, tablet compaction and coating.


  • BSc Chemistry Bristol University
  • PhD Bristol University

Student education

Chemical science; process modelling; computational methods; molecular modelling; multiscale modelling; reaction engineering

Research groups and institutes

  • Complex Systems and Processes
  • Applied Photon Science
  • Functional Materials, Products and Devices