Building on our highly interdisciplinary track-record in soft materials, we will reimagine the use and reuse of materials themselves - from taonga 3D printed from traditional Māori materials, to creating a form of artificial cells that self-regulate and reconfigure for different functions.
Our research will support New Zealand's goal for 'net zero' carbon emissions by 2050. We will explore new materials that will catch CO2 from air and waste streams. We'll also design new catalysts that will turn CO2 into green fuels.
The data centres worldwide that support our digital lifestyles use almost ten times as much electricity per year as the whole of NZ. We will develop computing materials that process information more like a brain, and that use far less energy than conventional electronics.
Crosscutting these Research Programmes sits our Mātauranga Māori Research Programme. This programme provides a platform for the other research programmes, intersecting with the theme of sustainability.
June 8, 2022
The MacDiarmid Institute has since 2003 hosted a biennial International Conference on Advanced Mater...
May 2, 2022
Deputy Director Māori, Dr Pauline Harris, sets out below some of the research of the MacDiarmid Inst...
February 20, 2019
The challenges facing New Zealand and the world today - clean water, renewable energy, climate change - will be solved by tomorrow's scientists and engineers - sitting in our classrooms right now, ready to be inspired. They need new materials and new technology based on those materials that haven't been discovered yet.
That's what the MacDiarmid Institute does. We are New Zealand's best scientists, engineers and educators, unified for a common goal: to make, understand, and use new materials to improve people's lives.
May 8, 2019
Associate Professor Nicola Gaston: Can you imagine a future where electricity is practically free, where there's clean water available for everyone and a simple blood test taken at home can help diagnose some diseases?
The technology that can make each of those things possible is based on materials science. Materials are all around us; this coffee cup, this table, even this sugar I might put in the coffee. When we make things really small, as we do in nanotechnology, we create a material that has most of its substance at the surface. With sugar, that means it dissolves quickly. But in general what it means is that we can control the properties of that material with great precision. So we can take a material, any material - it could be a metal or it could be plastic - and we can play with the surface and give it new abilities. For example, we could make it anti-bacterial or we could make it absorb more light.
The MacDiarmid Institute is a network of New Zealand's best materials scientists. Materials science is the basis of all high-tech manufacturing, including sustainable environmental innovations such as new solar cells or carbon capture technologies for climate change mitigation. We work with existing industries and we also spinout new companies. In the past 15 years we have spun out 16 new companies.
Dr Ray Thomson: One of the really exciting things that the Investigators at MacDiarmid are working on is across this whole climate change area. Sequestering carbon dioxide, improving the efficiency of photovoltaic cells through to really advanced battery storage.
Associate Professor Nicola Gaston: If we want that future, a materially sustainable future, where everyone around the world can have clean water, personalised medicine, free electricity, we need materials technologies. In the MacDiarmid Institute we bring materials scientists together and we partner with industry to create intellectual property, jobs and wealth for New Zealand.
May 25, 2022
In The Media
April 5, 2022
In The Media
April 5, 2022
We are a network of committed biologists, chemists, physicists and engineers who collaborate to develop innovations that will both solve big problems and boost the New Zealand economy.
Our research is creating new technologies to aid the transition to a more sustainable way of life and make our world a better place.
We have ongoing partnerships with community groups, museums and other organisations to help us take science out of the lab to make it accessible, exciting and inspiring.
Yang, H., Liu, X., Hao, M., Xie, Y., Wang, X., Tian, H., Waterhouse, G. I. N., Kruger, P. E., Telfer, S. G. & Ma, S. Functionalized Iron–Nitrogen–Carbon Electrocatalyst Provides a Reversible Electron Transfer Platform for Efficient Uranium Extraction from Seawater. Advanced Materials (2021). doi:10.1002/adma.202106621
Prabowo, S. W., Longbottom, R. J., Monaghan, B. J., del Puerto, D., Ryan, M. J. & Bumby, C. W. Phase transformations during fluidized bed reduction of New Zealand titanomagnetite ironsand in hydrogen gas. Powder Technology (2021). doi:10.1016/j.powtec.2021.117032
Revell, L. E., Kuma, P., Le Ru, E. C., Somerville, W. R. C. & Gaw, S. Direct radiative effects of airborne microplastics. Nature 598, 462–467 (2021). doi.org/10.1038/s41586-021-03864-x
Acharya, S. K., Galli, E., Mallinson, J. B., Bose, S. K., Wagner, F., Heywood, Z. E., Bones, P. J., Arnold, M. D. & Brown, S. A. Stochastic Spiking Behavior in Neuromorphic Networks Enables True Random Number Generation. ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces 13, 52861–52870 (2021). DOI: 10.1021/acsami.1c13668
Carroll, L. R., Martinez-Gazoni, R. F., Gaston, N., Reeves, R. J., Downard, A. J. & Allen, M. W. Bidirectional Control of the Band Bending at the (2̅01) and (010) Surfaces of β-Ga2O3 Using Aryldiazonium Ion and Phosphonic Acid Grafting. ACS Applied Electronic Materials 3, 5608–5620 (2021). doi.org/10.1021/acsaelm.1c01064
Cheema, J. A., Carraher, C., Plank, N. O. V., Travas-Sejdic, J. & Kralicek, A. Insect odorant receptor-based biosensors: Current status and prospects. Biotechnology Advances 53, 107840 (2021). doi.org/10.1016/j.biotechadv.2021.107840
Ramamirtham, S., Williams, M. A. K., Zare, D., Weeks, M. & Whitby, C. P. Complexes of β-lactoglobulin and high methyl-esterified pectin as a one-shot delivery system for reinforcing oil/water interfaces. Soft Matter 17, 8517–8522 (2021). DOI: 10.1016/j.fochx.2021.100194
Materials for Energy Capture and Utilisation, Towards Low Energy Tech - Hardware for Future Computing
My long term goal is the development of new approaches to energy conversion and storage, new display technologies and optical sensing.