Katherine Sanders

Dr Kate Sanders

MSci MRes PhD

Kate is a postdoctoral researcher working in the Engineering Department. Her research interests concern the scalable processing of nano- and micro-structured functional materials, and the use of droplets for material synthesis and assembly. 

Katherine Sanders

Kate graduated from University College London with an MSci in Chemistry (2016) and received a MRes (2017) and PhD (2021) from the University of Cambridge as a student of Wolfson College. Her PhD was supervised by Professor Michael De Volder, and explored methods of creating structured microparticles from nanoparticles inside droplets. Kate currently works on a new manufacturing process for microparticle production, which emerged from her PhD research and was previously supported by a NanoDTC Translational Prize Fellowship (2021-2022). This process is able to produce functional materials with well-defined structures for a variety of applications, including in Li-ion batteries, where structure is key to electrochemical performance.

Controlling material structure at the micro- and nano-scale is important in many areas, from water purification to energy storage. However, few scalable processing methods exist which can achieve precise control over these small length scales. Kate’s work uses emulsion droplets as templates to regulate the assembly of nanomaterials into larger structures. Through a combination of techniques to improve emulsion stability and selective mass transport, she is able to use each droplet as a tiny container with tuneable size and regular, spherical shape. This method is fast, requires no energy intensive conditions, and is not material specific; microparticles can be produced from a range of useful nanoparticle building blocks including carbon nanotubes, silica, and metal oxide nanoparticles.

Kate is currently working on scale-up of functional microparticle production and is also investigating commercial opportunities for the resulting structured materials. This work is funded by a Horizon Europe Proof of Concept grant (UKRI), which aims to advance the commercial prospects of this technology, focusing on structured battery materials. Kate is based in the Nanomanufacturing group, in the Institute for Manufacturing.

What's on

Inger Mewburn

Kicking the can down the road: How to create research impact in seven (not so easy) steps

06/06/2023 at 17.30

We hear terms like ‘research impact’ and ‘engagement’ all the time, but what does ‘impact’ and ‘engagement’ actually look like in practice?

selection of books written by Professor Inger Mewburn

Productivity workshops for researchers with Prof. Inger Mewburn aka The Thesis Whisperer

10/06/2023 at 10.00

Join Professor Inger Mewburn, also known online as the Thesis Whisperer, for one or both workshops to help increase your productivity: Getting sh!t done and Building a second brain (for writing)

'You' by Gavin Fry

Art Exhibition: 'Things Put Differently'

10/06/2023 at 10.00

Visit Wolfson's latest exhibition 'Things Put Differently' featuring Gavin Fry and works by Anthony Green and Mary Cozens-Walker.

Photo of artist Gurpran Rau holding a piece of her artwork

Art Exhibition: 'Patterns of Renewal'

10/06/2023 at 10.00

We're delighted to be the first to display Gurpran Rau's latest exhibition 'Patterns of Renewal', featuring a series of paintings created during lockdown inspired by her walks in the woods of Cambridgeshire.