Oxford is one of the leading chemistry research departments in the world with around 80 academic staff carrying out international-level research, and an annual research income of around £15 million. The latest (2008) Research Assessment Exercise confirmed that Oxford Chemistry has the highest “power rating” (breadth and depth of science) in the UK. It is the largest Chemistry Department in the UK, and this permits a uniquely wide diversity of research to be carried out. Undergraduates have the opportunity to sample fundamental research for themselves during their Part II year. Some of the most exciting developments in research occur at the interfaces with other disciplines such as Materials, Biology, Physics and Medicine, and the close proximity of world class Departments in these subjects in Oxford facilitates a wide range of collaborative projects. The Chemistry Department also has many projects funded by some of the largest industrial companies in the UK as well as 'spin out' companies established in and around Oxford based on discoveries made in the Department.
The research is currently based in three research buildings (the Chemistry Research Laboratory, the Inorganic Chemistry Laboratory, and the Physical and Theoretical Chemistry Laboratory). All synthetic Chemistry is located in the new state of the art Chemistry Research Laboratory, opened in 2004 at a cost of £60 M. The facilities for synthesis, research and teaching are the best available in the UK with a huge range of the latest instrumentation. Among the equipment available are the latest in automated X-ray diffractometers, electron microscopes, scanning tunnelling microscopes, mass spectrometers, high-field nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectrometers and specialised instruments for the study of solids. There is also a huge computational resource networked throughout the University and beyond to national computing centres. More details appear on the Chemistry Department pages.
Weekly seminars on the latest developments in research are held in the Departments and provide the opportunity to hear world leaders in their fields first hand. These seminars are open to undergraduates as well as research workers.