Staff Profile

Fiona Meldrum

Professor of Inorganic Chemistry

+44 (0)113 343 6414

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Fiona is a Professor of Inorganic Chemistry at the University and member of the Crystallisation and Directed Assembly group. She currently supervises two of our first cohort students (Rob Hooley and Thoko Kathyola), in tandem with other members of academic staff and is also the Director of the Leeds Centre for Crystallization, a newly-established centre for crystallization studies that provides a focus for fundamental and applied research in the field of crystals and crystallization at the University of Leeds.



Professor Meldrum’s research interests fall under the general category of materials chemistry, and are particularly focused on crystal growth. In this context, she examines routes to produce inorganic and organic crystals with defined properties including polymorph, size, morphology, organisation and mechanical properties. Within this topic there is considerable emphasis on biological crystallisation processes, and natural systems such as seashells, bones and teeth are used as an inspiration for the development of novel crystal growth strategies. These experiments also enable us to better understand natural crystal growth phenomena. She is carrying out a broad range of projects, employing analytical techniques including scanning and transmission electron microscopy, Raman microscopy and X-ray diffraction.


Fiona’s group are currently performing research under a number of major themes:

  • Crystallization in Confinement
  • Using Microfluidic Devices to Study Crystallization Processes
  • Crystals with Composite structures
  • Applying Genetic Algorithms to Inorganic Materials Chemistry
  • Crystallization Mechanisms
  • Additive-Directed Crystallisation
  • Structure-Property Relationships of Crystals
  • Crystallisation on Topographically Patterned Subsrates

A link to the University of Leeds Centre for Crystallisation can be found here.

Some of Fiona’s key publications include:

Clark J.N., Ihli J, Schenk A.S., Kim Y-Y, Kulak A.N., Campbell J.M., Nisbit G., Meldrum F.C, Robinson I.K, “Three-dimensional imaging of dislocation propagation during crystal growth and dissolution” Nature Materials, (2015) doi:10.1038/nmat4320.

Bawazer L.A, Ihli J., Comyn T.P., Critchley K., Empson C. and Meldrum F.C. “Genetic algorithm-guided discovery of small-molecule organics that direct synthesis and assembly of quantum dot superstructures” Adv. Mater. (2015), 27(2), 223-227.

Kim Y-Y, Schenk A. S., Ihli J., Kulak A. N., Hetherington N. B. J., Tang C. C., Schmahl W. W., Griesshaber E., Hyett G. and Meldrum F. C. “A Critical Analysis of Calcium Carbonate Mesocrystals” Nature Commun. (2014), 5, 4341, DOI: 10.1038/ncomms5341.

Ihli J., Wong W-C, Noel E. H., Kim Y-Y, Kulak A. N., Christenson H. K., Duer M. J., Meldrum F. C. (2014) Nature Commun. “Dehydration and Crystallization of Amorphous Calcium Carbonate in Solution and in Air”, 5, 3169. DOI: doi:10.1038/ncomms4169.

Kulak A. N., Semsarilar M., Kim Y-Y, Ihli J., Fielding L. A., Cespedes O., Armes S. P. and Meldrum F. C. “One-Pot Synthesis of an Inorganic Heterostructure: Uniform Occlusion of Magnetite Nanoparticles within Calcite Single Crystals”, Chem. Sci. (2014), 5(2), 738 – 743.

Wang Y-W, Christenson H. K., Meldrum F. C. (2013) Adv. Func. Mater.“Confinement Leads to Control over Calcium Sulfate Polymorph” 23(45), 5615–5623.

Ihli J., Bots P., Kulak A. N., Benning L. G., Meldrum F. C. (2013) Adv. Func. Mater. “Elucidating Mechanisms of Diffusion-Based Calcium Carbonate Synthesis Leads to Controlled Mesocrystal Formation” 23(15), 1965–1973.

Ihli J., Kim Y-Y, Noel E. H., Meldrum F. C. (2013) Adv. Func. Mater. “The Effect of Additives on Amorphous Calcium Carbonate (ACC): Janus Behavior in Solution and the Solid State” 23(12), 1575–1585.

Seto J., Ma Y. R., Davis S., Meldrum F. C., Gourrier A., Kim Y. Y., Schilde U., Sztucki M., Maltsev S., Jäger C., and Cölfen H. (2012) P.N.A.S, “Structure-property relationships of a biological mesocrystal in the adult sea urchin spine” 109(10), 3699-3704.

Cantaert B., Kim Y-Y., Ludwig H., Nudelman F., Sommerdijk N. A. J. M., Meldrum F. C. (2012) Adv. Func. Mater. “Think Positive: Phase Separation Enables a Positively Charged Additive to Induce Dramatic Changes in Calcium Carbonate Morphology” 22(5), 907-915.

Lenders J. J. M., Dey A., Bomans P. H. H., Spielmann J., de With G., Meldrum F. C., Harder S., Sommerdijk N. A. J. M. (2012) J. Am. Chem. Soc. “High-Magnesian Calcite Mesocrystals: an Organometallic Approach” 134(2), 1367-1373.

Wang Y-W, Kim Y-Y, Christenson H. K., Meldrum F. C. (2012) Chem. Commun. “New Precipitation Pathway for Calcium Sulfate Dihydrate (Gypsum) via Amorphous and Hemihydrate Intermediates” 48(4), 504-506.

Kim Y. Y, Hetherington N. B. J., Noel E. H., Kröger R., Charnock J. M., Christenson H. K., Meldrum F. C. (2011) Angew Chem Int. Ed.“Capillarity Creates Single-Crystal Calcite Nanowires from Amorphous Calcium Carbonate” 50(52), 12572-12577.

Kim Y-Y, Ganesan K., Yang P., Kulak A.N., Borukhin S., Pechook S., Ribeiro L., Kröger R., Eichhorn S.J., Armes S.P., Pokroy B., Meldrum F.C (2011) Nat. Mater. “Artificial Biominerals – Incorporation of Copolymer Micelles in Calcite Single Crystals” 10, 890-896.