Department of Materials


Dr Simon Martin BSc, PhD

Photo of Dr Simon Martin

Senior Lecturer

Undergraduate Director of Studies for the School of AACME


Simon read for a BSc in Physics at University of London (Queen Mary and Westfield College) and went on to complete a PhD at the University of Cambridge. His career has included post-doc positions at Cambridge University and the University of Sheffield, where he also had a temporary lectureship.

Simon joined the Department of Materials in 2007 as lecturer and became a Senior Lecturer in 2013.


  • 1990 BSc (1st Class) in Physics from University of London (Queen Mary and Westfield College)
  • 1994 PhD (“Nonlinear Optical Properties of Conjugated Materials”) University of Cambridge (Cavendish Laboratory).

Outline of main research interests:

Conjugated polymers are a fascinating class of one dimensional semiconductors. They are finding a wide range of applications including: Displays, Printed circuits (including field effect transistors) and photovoltaics

I am particularly interested in studying the morphology of thin films of these materials and the interfaces that they form with other materials.

I also am interested in the behaviour of polymer chains tethered at one end to a surface – polymer brushes. In particular I am investigating the behaviour of brushes made from stimuli responsive materials.

The experimental techniques I use include neutron and Xray scattering, atomic force microscopy and ellipsometry

Current teaching responsibilities:

  • MPA207 Mechanics for Materials
  • MPP501 Polymer Properties
  • MPP601 Polymer Properties (DT)

Current administrative responsibilities:

  • Director of Studies - Department of Materials

Recent publications:

  • ‘A solution concentration dependent transition from self-stratification to lateral phase separation in spin-cast ps:d-pmma thin films.’ Dunbar ADF, Mokarian-Tabari P, Parnell AJ, Martin SJ, Skoda MWA, and Jones RAL, Eur. Phys J E, 31: 369-375, 2010.
  • ‘Direct visualization of the real time swelling and collapse of a poly(methacrylic acid) brush using atomic force microscopy.’ Parnell AJ, Martin SJ, Jones RAL, Vasilev C, Crook CJ, and Ryan AJ, Soft Matter 5(2) 296-299, 2009.
  •  ‘Observation of the complete rupture of a buried polymer layer by off-specular neutron reflectometry’de Silva, JP; Martin, SJ; Cubitt, R; et al, EPL, 86(3), 2009.
  • ‘The impact of Interfacial Mixing on Forster Transfer at Conjugated Polymer Heterojunctions’, Higgins, AM; Cadby, A; Lidzey, DC; et al. Adv, Func. Mats. , 19(1):157-163, 2009.

 View central publications database

External roles and appointments:

  • Physics representative on the committee of the Recent Appointments in Polymer Science