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Yusuf Hamied Department of Chemistry


Professor of Functional Materials


I was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 1980 but grew up in London, UK. I studied Chemistry at Oxford, before going on to do a PhD at Imperial College with Prof. Charlotte Williams. I then spent a year at the University of Washington in Seattle working as a postdoc for Prof. Christine Luscombe. After this I returned to Imperial College to do a second postdoc with Prof. Iain McCulloch. I was awarded am Imperial College Junior Research Fellowship in 2012 before being appointed as a lecturer at University College London in 2013. In 2015 I was awarded an ERC starting grant and then in 2017 I was appointed as a lecturer joint between the physics and chemistry departments at the University of Cambridge. I was awarded an EPSRC fellowship in 2019 and then promoted to Professor (Grade 12) in 2022.


Research in my group involves the synthesis of novel conjugated materials for use in organic solar cells, light emitting diodes and transistors. We are particularly interested in synthesizing materials that help understand and utilise triplet and other unusual excited states (eg. singlet fission, upconversion, reverse intersystem crossing) due to their unique and fascinating properties. The virtually infinite tunability of conjugated polymers means that they can be applied to an immense number of applications. My research group is currently made up of 6 PDRAs and 4 PhD students. We also have MSc students join the group every year. We work very closely with other research groups particularly in Physics resulting a mix of disciplines, people and ideas.

Traditionally, much of the development of novel materials has come from a “top-down” approach where a particular research group focuses on one/several types of application. My aim as a scientist is to begin the research process from the “bottom up”. I believe that by developing a true understanding of the fundamental properties of conjugated materials, simultaneous advancement across all areas of conjugated polymer research and its relevant applications.

There are a few key properties of conjugated polymers which are important across ALL applications, which if they could be controlled would offer rapid advances across all fields of research. For instance, it could be argued that in applications where there is interaction of light and matter, the three most important of these properties are: excited state energy, lifetime and diffusion length. My aim is to synthesize novel systems which allow us to firstly measure, and then control these basic properties which are still not understood.

By developing a true understanding of how structure (both primary chemical, and secondary morphological) affects the fundamental properties it will be possible to make rapid advances across all fields. In particular, using this approach I believe it is possible to make great advances in areas which I believe represent some key challenges for modern science (eg clean energy generation and storage)

Find out more about Professor Bronstein's research


Singlet Fission in Pechmann Dyes: Planar Chromophore Design and Understanding
AV Girija, W Zeng, WK Myers, RC Kilbride, DTW Toolan, C Zhong, F Plasser, A Rao, H Bronstein
– J Am Chem Soc
Inverted device architecture for high efficiency single-layer organic light-emitting diodes with imbalanced charge transport.
X Tan, D Dou, L-L Chua, R-Q Png, DG Congrave, H Bronstein, M Baumgarten, Y Li, PWM Blom, G-JAH Wetzelaer
– Nat Commun
Decoupling excitons from high-frequency vibrations in organic molecules.
P Ghosh, AM Alvertis, R Chowdhury, P Murto, AJ Gillett, S Dong, AJ Sneyd, H-H Cho, EW Evans, B Monserrat, F Li, C Schnedermann, H Bronstein, RH Friend, A Rao
– Nature
Steric Control of Luminescence in Phenyl-Substituted Trityl Radicals.
H Bronstein
– Journal of the American Chemical Society
Suppression of Dexter transfer by covalent encapsulation for efficient matrix-free narrowband deep blue hyperfluorescent OLEDs.
H-H Cho, DG Congrave, AJ Gillett, S Montanaro, HE Francis, V Riesgo-Gonzalez, J Ye, R Chowdury, W Zeng, MK Etherington, J Royakkers, O Millington, AD Bond, F Plasser, JM Frost, CP Grey, A Rao, RH Friend, NC Greenham, H Bronstein
– Nature materials
Ligand Directed Self-Assembly of Organic- Semiconductor/Quantum-Dot Blend Films Enables Efficient Triplet Exciton-Photon Conversion
V Gray, DTW Toolan, S Dowland, JR Allardice, MP Weir, Z Zhang, J Xiao, A Klimash, JF Winkel, EK Holland, GM Fregoso, JE Anthony, H Bronstein, R Friend, AJ Ryan, RAL Jones, NC Greenham, A Rao
– Journal of the American Chemical Society
Synthesis and intramolecular singlet fission properties of ortho -phenylene linked oligomers of diphenylhexatriene
O Millington, A Sharma, S Montanaro, A Leventis, SA Dowland, DG Congrave, C-A Lee, A Rao, H Bronstein
– Chemical science
Re-Thinking Dimer Design Principles with Indolonaphthyridine Intramolecular Singlet Fission.
M Purdy, P Budden, K Fallon, CN Gannett, HD Abruña, W Zeng, R Friend, AJ Musser, H Bronstein
– Chemistry
Mesitylated trityl radicals, a platform for doublet emission: symmetry breaking, charge-transfer states and conjugated polymers.
P Murto, R Chowdhury, S Gorgon, E Guo, W Zeng, B Li, Y Sun, H Francis, RH Friend, H Bronstein
– Nat Commun
EGFR-targeted semiconducting polymer nanoparticles for photoacoustic imaging.
F Sciscione, S Guillaumé, AE Aliev, DT Cook, H Bronstein, HC Hailes, PC Beard, TL Kalber, O Ogunlade, AB Tabor
– Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry
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01223 336697

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