Hi! My name’s Chris. I’m a scientist and I love tea.
I am one of the Senior Research Technicians at AUT School of Applied Sciences [SoAS]. My job involves the maintenance, operation and instruction in the use of the school’s analytical instruments including gas and liquid chromatography, mass spectrometry, ICP, AAS and a diverse assortment of other awesome devices. I am most active in the field of chromatography, especially liquid chromatography – mass spectrometry (LC-MS). I even teach a few labs and the odd lecture on these subjects.
I completed my PhD in marine ecotoxicology at Exeter University in the UK in 2010. My work covers many fields including marine biology, analytical chemistry, chemical ecology and ecotoxicology. This research ties in to all of the SoAS’ three core research themes of food science, applied ecology and biomedical science. For example I am currently working on the analysis of anthocyanins and polyphenols in cherries by LC-MS, the profiling of triglycerides in human and invertebrate serum and in cooking oils by LC-MS and I’m working on profiling metabolites in pretty much anything organic using either LC-MS or GC-MS. I’m also interested in quantifying neonicotinoid pesticides in soil, plants and bee products using LC-MS.
My general interests are very broad and cover aspects of sustainable development, clean tech, renewable energy and ecological economics. I greatly enjoy hacking hardware for my own amusement and for research purposes. I also dabble in software hackery, developing applications for programmable microprocessor platforms, such as Arduino, and for the programming environment Processing. This allows me to measure and control things in the lab. For example, I constructed a device to switch flows of heated milk through a bioreactor and to log the temperature to a PC. I have also created a device for switching flows of compressed air to inflatable collars used to simulate peristalsis in a synthetic human stomach. I intend to keep a record of my hackery on this blog so keep your eyes peeled for the #Hacking tag.
The contents of this blog reflect my personal opinions and not those of my employer.