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Yusuf Hamied Department of Chemistry


Royal Society University Research Fellow


Research Interests

The behavior of liquids and their interfaces underlies many important phenomena across the biological and physical sciences. I use molecular simulations and statistical mechanics to elicit the microscopic details of interfacial systems, with an emphasis on perhaps the most important of all liquids: water and its salt solutions. 

Recent research has focused on improving simulations methods to give a better description of ions adsorbed to charged interfaces [1], which is important for tackling complex problems such as ice nucleation [2]. I also have a keen interest in understanding dielectric response in water [3,4] and its implications for aqueous ion solvation [5].

[1] T Sayer & SJ Cox, J. Chem. Phys. 153, 164709 (2020) [publisher,arXiv]

[2] T Sayer & SJ Cox, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys. 21, 14546 (2019) [publisher,arXiv]

[3] SJ Cox, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 117, 19746 (2020) [publisher,arXiv]

[4] SJ Cox & M Sprik, J. Chem. Phys. 151, 064506 (2019) [publisher,arXiv]

[5] SJ Cox, DG Thorpe, PR Shaffer & PL Geissler, Chem. Sci. 11, 11791 (2020) [publisher,arXiv]



Possible PhD projects involve improving simulation methodology to understand the structure and dynamics of charged interfaces in solution; using molecular simulations to understand how polar crystals grow; or pursuing theoretical approaches to improve our understanding of complex fluids. 

If you are interested in joining the team, please get in touch to discuss opportunities.



  • 2021-present: Royal Society University Research Fellow, Yusuf Hamied Department of Chemistry, University of Cambridge, UK
  • 2017-2021: Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 Research Fellow, visiting Yusuf Hamied Department of Chemistry, University of Cambridge, UK
  • 2018-present: College lecturer, Churchill College, University of Cambridge, UK
  • 2020-2021: Undergraduate Tutor, Churchill College, University of Cambridge, UK
  • 2015-2017: Postdoctoral research fellow, Chemical Sciences Division, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Ca. USA
  • 2010-2014: PhD student, Department of Chemistry, University College London, UK




Can molecular simulations reliably compare homogeneous and heterogeneous ice nucleation?
D Atherton, A Michaelides, SJ Cox
– The Journal of Chemical Physics
How do interfaces alter the dynamics of supercooled water?
P Gasparotto, M Fitzner, SJ Cox, GC Sosso, A Michaelides
– Nanoscale
Quadrupole-mediated dielectric response and the charge-asymmetric solvation of ions in water.
SJ Cox, KK Mandadapu, PL Geissler
– The Journal of Chemical Physics
Microscopic Kinetics Pathway of Salt Crystallization in Graphene Nanocapillaries
L Wang, J Chen, SJ Cox, L Liu, GC Sosso, N Li, P Gao, A Michaelides, E Wang, X Bai
– Physical review letters
Macroscopic surface charges from microscopic simulations.
T Sayer, SJ Cox
– Journal of Chemical Physics
Assessing long-range contributions to the charge asymmetry of ion adsorption at the air-water interface.
SJ Cox, DG Thorpe, PR Shaffer, PL Geissler
– Chemical Science
Computing Surface Acidity Constants of Proton Hopping Groups from Density Functional Theory-Based Molecular Dynamics: Application to the SnO2(110)/H2O Interface
M Jia, C Zhang, SJ Cox, M Sprik, J Cheng
– Journal of chemical theory and computation
Dielectric response with short-ranged electrostatics
SJ Cox
– Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Finite field formalism for bulk electrolyte solutions
SJ Cox, M Sprik
– The Journal of Chemical Physics
Stabilization of AgI's polar surfaces by the aqueous environment, and its implications for ice formation
T Sayer, SJ Cox
– Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics
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Research Interest Group

Telephone number

01223 336384 (shared)

Email address