Andrew ParnellDr Andrew Parnell

Research Fellow

Contact details

Group web page

Materials Physics Group

Biograpical Sketch

Dr Andrew Parnell studied for an MPhys degree in Physics at the University of Sheffield, graduating in 2001. This was followed by an MSc in Nanoscale Science and Technology, jointly taught by the Universities of Leeds and Sheffield. Subsequently he undertook a Sheffield PhD with the title “A Study of Weak Polyelectrolyte Brushes” supervised by Professor Richard Jones FRS, viva date January 2007. He was a postdoctoral researcher in the Department of Chemistry working with Professor Patrick Fairclough, also at the University of Sheffield from 2006-2007. He returned to the Physics department at Sheffield in 2007 to work on the Soft nanotechnology platform grant held by Professor Jones. In 2015 he was promoted to lecturer grade and is currently a senior research fellow.


Dr Parnell has been chosen as the Institute of Physics Polymer Physics Group /DPOLY Polymer exchange lecturer for 2017 and will give an invited talk at the March American Physical Society (APS) meeting in New Orleans. The talk is titled "Self-assembled structural colour in nature"

Innovative product of the year award 2011, awarded by the Institute of Chemical Engineers (IChemE). The award was for the development of materials that exhibit photonic properties, which can be tuned to a specific wavelength on demand based on a patent where I am a named inventor (UK Patent Application No GB1013274.4; Multicoloured Opalescent Block Copolymer Blends).

Research Keywords

polymer physics, biophysics, soft matter, organic photovoltaics, phase separation, photonics, neutron and x-ray scattering, block copolymers, polymer brushes, structured surfaces, anti-microbial surfaces.

Selected publications

Link to my Google scholar profile 

  • Porosity of Stöber silica observed by spin-echo small angle neutron scattering. S. R. Parnell, A. L. Washington, R. Pynn, A. Walsh, A. J. Parnell and R. M. Dalgliesh. (Soft Matter). DOI 10.1039/C5SM02772A (2016).
  • An anti-inflammatory, self-assembled peptide/polysaccharide scaffold that induces apoptosis in epithelial cancer cells. R. Li, S. Pavuluri, K. Bruggeman, B. Long, A. J. Parnell, A. Martel, S. R. Parnell, F. Pfeffer A. J. C. Dennison, K. Nicholas, C. Barrow, D. Nisbet (Nanomedicine: Nanotechnology, Biology, and Medicine 12, p1397-1407 (2016).
  • Extrinsic wrinkling and single exfoliated sheets of graphene oxide in polymer composites. M. P. Weir, D. W. Johnson, S. Boothroyd, R. Savage, R. L. Thompson, S. R. Parnell, A. J. Parnell, S. M. King, S. E. Rogers, K. S. Coleman N. Clarke. Chemistry of Materials, 28, p1698-1704 (2016).
  • A Neutron Reflectometry Study of the Interaction of Partially Denatured Insulin with a DSPC Floating Lipid Bilayer. A. J. C. Dennison, R. A. L. Jones. R. A. Staniforth, A. J. Parnell. Soft Matter, 12, p824-829 (2016).
  • Physical mechanisms responsible for the water induced degradation of PC61BM P3HT photovoltaic thin film films. A. J. Parnell, A. J. Cadby, A. D. F. Dunbar, G. Roberts, A. Plumridge, R. M. Dalgliesh, M. W. A. Skoda, and R. A. L. Jones. Journal of Polymer Science Part B: Polymer Physics, 54, p141-146 (2016).
  • Spatially modulated structural colour in bird feathers. A. J. Parnell, A. L. Washington, O. O. Mykhaylyk, C. J. Hill, A. Bianco, S. L. Burg, A. J C Dennison, M. Snape, A. J. Cadby, A. J. Smith, S. Prevost, D. M. Whittaker, R. A. L. Jones, A. R. Parker and J. P. A. Fairclough. Nature Scientific Reports, art. No. 18317 (2015).
  • Spin Echo Small Angle Neutron Scattering using a continuously pumped 3He neutron polarisation analyser. S. R. Parnell, A. L. Washington , K. Li , H. Yan , P. Stonaha , F. Li , T. Wang , A. Walsh , W. C. Chen , A. J Parnell , J. P. A. Fairclough , D. V. Baxter , W. Snow , R. Pynn. Review of Scientific Instruments, 86, 023902 (2015).
  • The hydration and ordering of lamellar block copolymer films prior to formation of polymer vesicles. Y. Kamata, A. J. Parnell, P. Gutfreund, M. Skoda, A. Dennison, R. Barker, S. Mai, A. J. Ryan, N. Torikai, M. Kawaguchi and R. A. L. Jones. Macromolecules, 47, p8682-8690 (2014).
  • Voltage-induced swelling and de-swelling of weak polybase brushes. M. P. Weir, S. Y. Heriot, A. J Parnell, S. A. Holt, J. R. P. Webster and R. A. L. Jones. Langmuir, 27, p11000-11007 (2011).
  • The Nanoscale Phase Separation of P3HT PCBM Thick Films as measured by Small Angle X-ray Scattering. A. J. Parnell, A. J. Cadby, O. O. Mykhaylyk, A. D. F. Dunbar, P. E. Hopkinson. A. M. Donald, R. A. L. Jones. Macromolecules, 44, p6503-6508 (2011).
  • In Situ Imaging and Height Reconstruction of Phase Separation Processes in Polymer Blends during Spin Coating. S. Ebbens, R. Hodgkinson, A. J. Parnell, A. Dunbar, S. J. Martin, P. D. Topham, N. Clarke, and J. R. Howse. ACS Nano, 5, p5124-5131 (2011).
  • Continuously tuneable optical filters from self-assembled block copolymer blends. A. J. Parnell, A. Pryke, O. O. Mykhaylyk, A. M. Adawi, N. J. Terril, J. R. Howse, J. P. A. Fairclough. Soft Matter, 7, p3721-3725 (2011).
  • Direct visualization of the real time swelling and collapse of a poly(methacrylic acid) brush using scanning force microscopy A. J. Parnell, S. J. Martin, R. A. L. Jones, C. J. Crook and A. J. Ryan. Soft Matter 5, 296-299 (2009).
  • Synthesis, Characterization and Swelling behaviour of Poly(methacrylic acid) Brushes Synthesized Using Atom Transfer Radical Polymerization. A. J. Parnell, S. J. Martin, C. C. Dang, M. Geoghegan, R. A. L. Jones, C. J. Crook, J. R. Howse and A. J. Ryan. Polymer, 50, p1005-11014 (2009).