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John Dennis


Calculated based on number of publications stored in Pure and citations from Scopus
1990 …2024

Research activity per year

Personal profile

Personal profile

Dr. John Dennis joined the department of Chemistry at XJTLU in October 2022. Immediately before this he worked as Professor at Zhejiang University for two years, being brought to China via a High-Level Foreign Expert Award from the Zhejiang Province 1000 Talent Plan in 2020. He gained his D.Phil. from the University of Sussex in 1993 under the supervision Harry Kroto. After publishing some 30 papers in 3 years as a graduate student (including three in Nature), all his postdoctoral Research was conducted under internationally-competitive personal research fellowships (from the Australian Research Council, The Japan Society for the Promotion of Science and the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation). He gained tenure at Queen Mary University of London in the Department of Chemistry in 1999 and transferred to the Physics Department at the same institution with a promotion to a professorial position in 2005.

Research interests

The application is isomer-pure fullerene derivatives to organic electronics: This includes the purification and spectroscopic characterisation of all 19 structural isomers of OPV electron acceptor material bisPCBM (this included the separation of bis-PCBM’s 13 chiral isomers into their enantiomer pairs – 32 species of bisPCBM in total). Applications include organic photo-voltaics (OPVs), organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs) and organic field effect transistors (OFETs). The wide-ranging subtle effects of addend position and relative orientations on device performance are being investigated. We are also investigating their application in surface passivation, carrier extraction, carrier transport mediums in hybrid organic-inorganic perovskite-based electronics (both p-type and n-type materials depending on isomer characteristics).

Quantum information processing: The ESR of the nitrogen-containing endohedral fullerene iNC60 has hyperfine lines at least two orders of magnitude narrower then any other known radical, making it a possible qubit candidate for quantum computation. Having recently performed the first (and still only) isolation of iNC60, I intend to systematically investigate the potential of nitrogen- and phosphorous-containing incar-fullerenes, as dimers as novel building-block materials for electron spin-based scalable solid-state quantum computation.

Endohedral fullerenes as contrast agents for MRI: Gadolinium-containing endohedral fullerenes are promising species for contrast enhancement in MRI, these species have several advantages over conventional agents. The incarcerated highly toxic Gd3+ ion is severely sterically hindered to dissociation, and they are about 20 times as effective, thus are required in much smaller doses. We, in collaboration with researchers at the Institute of Chemistry at the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing are currently investigating functionalisation of these species to make them water-soluble and specific tissue targeting. For example, we have recently produced bone-targeting Gd-based endohedral fullerenes.

Carbon peapods: By encapsulating metal element containing endohedral fullerenes within carbon nanotubes tube, the band gap tubes can be narrowed (at the points corresponding to the positions of the endohedral fullerene). Preliminary results indicate these carbon peapods can be p-type, n-type, or am-bipolar, depending on the encapsulated atom. The effects of the encapsulated atom on the electronic transport of the fullerene is investigated.

Temperature-dependent structural studies: through NMR spectroscopy (molecular and dynamical) and XRD (crystal). Temperature-dependant vibrational studies via FTIR and FT-Raman.


Professor, Department of Chemistry, XJTLU, 2022-present

Professor, Department of Polymer Science and Engineering, Zhejiang University, 2020-2022

Professor in molecular nanostructured materials, Department of Physics, Queen Mary, University of London. 2006-2020

Senior Lecturer in Chemistry, Department of Chemistry, Queen Mary, University of London 1999-2006

Humboldt Research Fellow (Alexander von Humboldt Foundation) Hahn Meitner Institute-Berlin, 1998-1999

Postdoctoral Research Fellowship to Foreign Researchers (Japan Society for the Promotion of Science), Department of Chemistry, Nagoya University, 1996-1998

Australian Postdoctoral Reseach Fellowship (Australian Research Council). University of New South Wales, 1994-1996

Postdoctoral Reseach Assistant. Department of Applied Physics, University of Sydney, 1993


CHE 421 Computational Materials Science

CHE317 Introduction to molecular modelling.

Awards and honours

High-Level Foreign Expert Award (Zhejiang Province Thousand Talents Plan) 2018.

Research Fellowship (Alexander von Humboldt Foundation) 1998

Postdoctoral Research Fellowship to Foreign Researchers (Japan Society for the Promotion of Science) 1996

Australian Postdoctoral Research Fellowship (Australian Research Council) 1994

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy

Education/Academic qualification

PG.Cert. Academic Practice, Queen Mary, University of London 2002.

D.Phil. Chemistry (Supervsior H.W. Kroto), University of Sussex, 1993

M.Sc., Chemical Physics, University of Sussex, 1990

B.Sc. (hons) Chemical Physics, University of Sussex, 1989

Person Types

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