Associate Investigators

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Associate Professor Steven Matthews

Associate Professor Steven Matthews

Associate Investigator

Towards Zero Carbon - Catalytic Architectures

Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering
The University of Auckland
20 Symonds Street
Auckland 1010


Steven’s PhD in the Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering, The University of Auckland (2004), focused on the high temperature erosion-corrosion mechanisms of Cr3C2-NiCr high velocity thermal sprayed coatings. From 2004–2007 he was employed as a R&D Manager for Bekaert Advanced Coatings, Belgium. His focus was on the development of sputtering targets for the large area glass and electronics industries. This incorporated projects on materials as diverse as Zn, Si, TiO2 and novel electronic materials, that spanned from powder feedstock preparation, industrial thermal spray production, and failure analysis.

From 2008–2014 Steve lectured in materials engineering within the School of Engineering and Advanced Technology, Massey University, New Zealand. During this period, he gained Marsden Fast Start funding for the development of a novel high temperature carbide composite coatings for improved oxidation resistance. In addition to his academic and applied research in thermal spray coating, he commissioned the metallography and analysis laboratory for the Titanium Industry Development Association, with a principal focus on Ti 3-D printing.

Since 2015 he has been a senior lecturer within the Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering, The University of Auckland. From 2016–2019 this incorporated the directorship of the Research Centre for Surface and Materials Science, overseeing the University’s SEM and XPS analytical facilities, in addition to the Engineering faculty’s metallography and optical microscopy laboratories.

Research interests

Steve's current research focuses on novel coating functionalities through manipulation of carbide/oxide microstructures, the use of thermal spraying to promote environmental remediation and biodiversity in marine environments, and the development of novel catalytic coatings for wet oxidation.

Surfaces have always rocked my world! The ability to characterise and functionally manipulate the way an entire component operates, by tweaking its surface through innovative coating technologies is awesome and endlessly fascinating.

Associate Professor Steven Matthews

In the news

News Article

2023 Marsden grant success

November 3, 2023

Congratulations to our long list of Marsden winners this year - it's wonderful to see the talent being recognised with Fast-Start grants, and those at the next career stage with their first Standard grants, and especially great to see the strong thread of materials for sustainability running through this list.

Read more about 2023 Marsden grant success

Annual Report

New Associate Investigators 2021

May 5, 2022

Meet our new Associate Investigators that joined the MacDiarmid Institute whānau in 2021.

Read more about New Associate Investigators 2021