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Principal Investigators

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Associate Professor Geoff Willmott

Associate Professor Geoff Willmott

Principal Investigator

Towards Zero Waste - Reconfigurable Systems

Phone:
+64 9 373 7599, ext. 89992

Address:
The Departments of Physics and Chemistry
The University of Auckland
Private Bag 92019
Auckland

Biography

Dr Geoff Willmott is Deputy Director in Commercialisation and Industry Engagement and a Principal Investigator in the MacDiarmid Institute. Geoff grew up in Auckland and studied at the University of Cambridge, obtaining a PhD in shock physics in 2005. The following year he returned to New Zealand and Industrial Research Limited, where he worked in the Nano and Micro Fluidics team for 8 years. He joined the University of Auckland in 2013 and is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Physics and the School of Chemical Sciences.

Geoff has collaborated with industrial partners including Qinetiq, de Beers and Izon Science, and has previously worked in management consultancy. He currently leads the Institute’s “Bionano/Nanobio and Soft Matter” Theme and was awarded a Rutherford Discovery Fellowship in 2012.

Research interests

Nanofluidics is the study and application of fluid flow in and around nanoscale structures, inspired by microfluidics, nanoscience and biotechnology.  The range of tools available to researchers who wish to manipulate fluids at the nanoscale is presently limited.

We use theory and experimentation to develop novel tools for harnessing nanofluidic transport. Key research topics include tunable nanopores, capillarity and motion of phase boundaries, and drop splashes on water-repellent surfaces.

It’s great to see this flow from fundamental research to applied technology.

Associate Professor Geoff Willmott
Associate Professor Geoff Willmott

In the news

Annual Report

Alumni engagement

April 1, 2021

We continue to celebrate the achievements of our alumni – in academia, government and industry.

Read more about Alumni engagement

Annual Report

The emerging field of mechanobiology

March 31, 2021

Physics biology collaborations are forging mechanobiology – a research area key to understanding health and disease.

Read more about The emerging field of mechanobiology

Annual Report

Materials science in the new energy sector

June 11, 2020

In May, the Government hosted the Just Transition summit in Taranaki on preparing for a low emissions economy,

Read more about Materials science in the new energy sector

In The Media

Deep tech and the Māori economy can be the backbone of NZ’s recovery

June 4, 2020

Geoff Willmott discusses how the tech sector and the Māori economy is well-placed to lead New Zealand's recovery from Covid-19.

Read more about Deep tech and the Māori economy can be the backbone of NZ’s recovery

In The Media

The cure for climate change could be in our own backyard

May 4, 2019

The answers to sustainability goals and energy commitments must involve materials research happening in New Zealand, writes Dr Geoff Willmott.

Read more about The cure for climate change could be in our own backyard

News Article

MacDiarmid researchers successful in latest MBIE round

September 14, 2018

The MacDiarmid Institute is pleased to share the following successes from MacDiarmid researchers in this year’s MBIE Endeavour fund round.

Read more about MacDiarmid researchers successful in latest MBIE round

Annual Report

1.6 Using physics to boost New Zealand’s milk powder export industry - Annual Report 2017

May 18, 2018

Unlike most of us, when physicist Dr Geoff Willmott thinks about milk, he thinks about droplets, surfaces and heat - and he’s eager to use surface interactions to solve problems in the dairy industry.

Read more about 1.6 Using physics to boost New Zealand’s milk powder export industry - Annual Report 2017

Events

Sustainable innovation and commercialisation

October 3, 2019

Dr Viji Sarojini and Dr Geoff Willmott are giving a joint presentation on sustainable innovation and commercialisation.

Read more Sustainable innovation and commercialisation

Podcasts

Materials: Fact or Fiction - The Stillsuit

Materials: Fact or Fiction - The Stillsuit

March 5, 2021

MacDiarmid Institute Deputy Director, Associate Professor Geoff Willmott, gives us his scientific take on the stillsuit from Dune.

Read more about Materials: Fact or Fiction - The Stillsuit

Videos

Geoff Wilmott - attracting and repelling water

March 21, 2019

From fog harvesters to self-cleaning surfaces, Dr Geoff Wilmott is looking at how water is repelled by and attracted to surfaces.

Read more about Geoff Wilmott - attracting and repelling water