Dr Ann Chippindale

Stipendiary Lecturer in Inorganic Chemistry

Detailed Biography


  • Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry
  • Member of the British Crystallographic Association
  • Member of the Greater Chapter, Pusey House, Oxford

Teaching Activities

Teach all aspects of Inorganic Chemistry

Research Interests

My aim is to prepare solid-state materials with interesting structural, chemical and physical properties. One area of research involves the synthesis and structural characterisation of 'open-framework', microporous materials - materials with structures containing regular arrays of pores or channels of suitable size to accommodate small molecules - with the idea of performing chemical reactions inside the pores. A number of microporous materials occur in Nature, including a class of aluminosilicate minerals called 'zeolites', which, by virtue of their open structures, have a range of uses from water softeners in washing powders to catalysts in petrochemical refining. I am exploring open-framework metal phosphates, which are synthetic materials that can mimic, and in some cases, outperform the natural zeolites.

I am also studying transition-metal cyanides (in collaboration with Dr SJ Hibble, Reading). A number of our cyanides show structural features of current interest in crystal engineering and have chiral, helical and interpenetrating frameworks. We have recently discovered that even compounds with simple formulae, such as CuCN and Ni(CN)2, have complicated, highly disordered structures. These materials also show a curious physical propoerty called 'negative thermal expansion' and contract when they are heated.

Underpinning all my work is the need to know the detailed structures of the materials on the atomic scale. This can be achieved using crystallographic techniques such as X-ray and neutron diffraction. Experiments are carried out either 'in house' or at national facilities, such as the new X-ray synchrotron at Diamond and the spallation neutron source at ISIS.

Recent Publications

1. "Interpenetrating copper-silver cyanometallate networks: polymorphs and topological isomers", A.M. Chippindale, S.M. Cheyne and S.J. Hibble, Angew. Chemie Int. Ed., 44, 7942 (2005).
2. "Surprises from a simple material - the structure and properties of nickel cyanide", S.J. Hibble, A.M. Chippindale, A.H. Pohl and A.C. Hannon, Angew. Chemie Int. Ed., 46, 7116 (2007).
3. "Helices, Chirality and Interpenetration: the Versatility and Remarkable Interconversion of Silver-Copper Cyanide Frameworks", A.M. Chippindale and S.J. Hibble, J.A.C.S., 131, 12736 (2009).
4. "The Structures of Pd(CN)2 and Pt(CN)2: Intrinsically Nanocrystalline Materials?" S.J. Hibble, A.M. Chippindale, E.J. Bilbé, E. Marelli, P.J.F. Harris and A.C. Hannon, Inorg. Chem. 50, 104 (2011).