Portrait of Dr Gareth Parkes Dr Gareth Parkes

g.m.b.parkes@hud.ac.uk | 01484 472791


I graduated from the University of East Anglia with a BSc(Hons) in Chemistry. After studying analytical chemistry at the University of Liverpool and computer interfacing at Middlesex Polytechnic I went on to work in The Catalysis Research Unit under Prof. Phil Barnes at Leeds Metropolitan University, obtaining my PhD there in the area of novel thermal analysis techniques. After spending a year at the University of Central Lancashire, I moved to the University of Huddersfield and became a lecturer in Analytical Chemistry.

I have taught a range of topics including physical and analytical chemistry but, since 2002, I have been mainly involved on our Forensic & Analytical Science degree being responsible for the 1st and 2nd year Practical Forensic Science modules and also contributing to the Crime Scene Investigation module.

Research and Scholarship

Current research interests include novel thermal analysis / thermal processing techniques with a specific focus on microwave heating.

(a) Microwave thermal analysis (MWTA)

MWTA uses microwave energy as a means of simultaneously heating a sample and detecting thermal transitions (phase changes, decomposition, etc.) through changes in the sample’s dielectric properties. For certain systems, MWTA has the potential for greater sensitivity than conventional thermal analysis.

(b) Sample controlled thermal analysis (SCTA)

SCTA is a family of techniques where the heating rate is governed, via a feedback loop, by the rate of a thermal process undergone by the sample. SCTA can provide near uniform reaction conditions, through the elimination of temperature gradients, which leads to enhanced resolution and kinetic data.

(c) Microwave processing of materials

The use of single mode cavities and variable power microwave generators allows for the controlled heating of materials to produce products that can have different characteristics to those heated using conventional techniques. Currently, the effect of microwave heating/processing is being investigated in the:

  1. Calcination of layered double hydroxides (LDHs) to form mixed metal catalysts.
  2. Activation of carbon adsorbents through controlled oxidation.
  3. Preparation of pharmaceutical formulation through the combining of a drug and excipient.

(d) Preparation and modification of carbon adsorbents

The preparation, activation and characterisation of carbons for use as adsorbents and catalyst supports.

Publications and Other Research Outputs


Shokry, D., Waters, L., Parkes, G. and Mitchell, J. (2016) ‘The Use of Bile Salt Micelles for the Prediction of Human Intestinal AbsorptionJournal of Pharmaceutical Sciences , 105 (12), pp. 3611-3614. ISSN 0022-3549

Waters, L., Shokry, D. and Parkes, G. (2016) ‘Predicting human intestinal absorption in the presence of bile salt with micellar liquid chromatographyBiomedical Chromatography . ISSN 1099-0801


Waters, L., Hussain, T. and Parkes, G. (2014) ‘Thermodynamics of micellisation: Sodium dodecyl sulfate/sodium deoxycholate with polyethylene glycol and model drugsJournal of Chemical Thermodynamics , 77, pp. 77-81. ISSN 0021-9614

Harding, L., Parkes, G. and Townend, J. (2014) ‘Parameters affecting ion intensities in transmission-mode Direct Analysis in Real-Time mass spectrometryAnalyst , 139 (17), pp. 4176-4180. ISSN 0003-2654

Fidalgo, B., Williams, H., Dawson, E. and Parkes, G. (2014) ‘Conventional and microwave-heated oxygen pulsing techniques on metal-doped activated carbonsJournal of Porous Materials , 21 (1), pp. 81-89. ISSN 1380-2224


Waters, L., Hussain, T., Parkes, G., Hanrahan, J. and Tobin, J. (2013) ‘Inclusion of fenofibrate in a series of mesoporous silicas using microwave irradiationEuropean Journal of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics , 85 (3 (B)), pp. 936-941. ISSN 0939-6411

Bostock, E., Parkes, G. and Williams, G. (2013) ‘A novel method for the analysis of slash cuts to clothingJournal of Forensic Research . ISSN 2157-7145


Dawson, E., Parkes, G. and Branton, P. (2012) ‘Synthesis of Vegetable-Based Activated Carbons with Mixed Micro- and Mesoporosity for Use in Cigarette FiltersAdsorption Science and Technology , 30 (10), pp. 859-866. ISSN 0263-6174

Cross, H., Parkes, G. and Brown, D. (2012) ‘Microwave calcination of Cu/Mg/Al hydrotalcite catalyst precursorApplied Catalysis A: General , 429/30, pp. 24-30. ISSN 0926860X


Hussain, T., Waters, L. and Parkes, G. (2011) ‘Pharmaceutical Analysis: Drug-micelle interactionsSwiss Pharma , 33 (10), p. 36. ISSN 0251-1673

Waters, L., Bedford, S. and Parkes, G. (2011) ‘Controlled Microwave Processing Applied to the Pharmaceutical Formulation of IbuprofenAAPS PharmSciTech , 12 (4), pp. 1038-1043. ISSN 1530-9932

Charsley, E., Laye, P., Parkes, G. and Rooney, J. (2011) ‘Development and applications of a sample controlled DSC systemJournal of Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry , 105 (2), pp. 699-703. ISSN 1388-6150


Waters, L., Bedford, S., Parkes, G. and Mitchell, J. (2010) ‘Influence of lipophilicity on drug–cyclodextrin interactions: A calorimetric studyThermochimica Acta , 511 (1-2), pp. 102-106. ISSN 00406031


Dawson, E., Parkes, G., Bond, G. and Mao, R. (2009) ‘A system to investigate the remediation of organic vapors using microwave-induced plasma with fluidized carbon granulesReview of Scientific Instruments , 80 (3), p. 034102. ISSN 00346748


Williams, H., Dawson, E., Barnes, P., Parkes, G., Pears, L. and Hindmarsh, C. (2008) ‘A new low temperature approach to developing mesoporosity in metal-doped carbons for adsorption and catalysisJournal of Porous Materials , 16 (5), pp. 557-564. ISSN 1380-2224

Williams, H. and Parkes, G. (2008) ‘Activation of a phenolic resin-derived carbon in air using microwave thermogravimetryCarbon , 46 (8), pp. 1169-1172. ISSN 0008-6223

Dawson, E., Parkes, G., Barnes, P., Bond, G. and Mao, R. (2008) ‘The generation of microwave-induced plasma in granular active carbons under fluidised bed conditionsCarbon , 46 (2), pp. 220-228. ISSN 00086223


Kumar, B., Nair, S., Parkes, G., Barnes, P., Sibley, M. and Bond, G. (2006) ‘Development of a novel instrument for microwave dielectric thermal analysisReview of Scientific Instruments , 77, pp. 045108-1. ISSN 0034-6748

Barnes, P., Charsley, E. and Parkes, G. (2006) ‘Recent developments in advanced thermal analysis: sample controlled thermal analysisEuropean Pharmaceutical Review , 11 (4), pp. 83-98. ISSN 1360-8606

Barnes, P., Charsley, E. and Parkes, G. (2006) ‘SCTA for pharmaEuropean Pharmaceutical Review (4). ISSN 1360-8606


Fesenko, E., Barnes, P. and Parkes, G. (2004) ‘SCTA and catalysis’. In: Sample Controlled Thermal Analysis. New York, USA: Springer. pp. 174-225. ISBN 978-1-4020-1563-2


Fesenko, E., Barnes, P., Parkes, G., Brown, D. and Naderi, M. (2003) ‘Application of SCTA to the study of the reactivity of acid-base catalystsJournal of Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry , 72 (3), pp. 1103-1105. ISSN 14182874

Charsley, E., Rooney, J., Hill, J., Parkes, G., Barnes, P. and Dawson, E. (2003) ‘Development and applications of a preparative scale sample controlled thermogravimetric systemJournal of Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry , 72 (3), pp. 1091-1092. ISSN 14182874

Charsley, E., Stewart, C., Barnes, P. and Parkes, G. (2003) ‘Development and applications of sample controlled thermomicroscopyJournal of Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry , 72 (3), pp. 1087-1090. ISSN 14182874

Dawson, E., Parkes, G., Barnes, P. and Chinn, M. (2003) ‘An investigation of the porosity of carbons prepared by constant rate activation in airCarbon , 41 (3), pp. 571-578. ISSN 00086223


Fesenko, E., Barnes, P., Parkes, G., Dawson, E. and Tiernan, M. (2002) ‘Catalyst Characterisation and Preparation Using Sample Controlled Thermal Techniques—High Resolution Studies and the Determination of the Energetics of Surface and Bulk ProcessesTopics in Catalysis , 19 (3/4), pp. 283-301. ISSN 1022-5528

Dawson, E., Parkes, G., Barnes, P., Chinn, M., Pears, A. and Hindmarsh, C. (2002) ‘A study of evolved gas control and its effect on carbon yield during the activation of carbon fibres by controlled rate methodsCarbon , 40 (15), pp. 2897-2903. ISSN 00086223

Naderi, M., Dale, J., Parkes, G. and Brown, D. (2002) ‘Solvation of exchangeable cations in sulfonated polystyrene ion-exchange resins: an ESR studyReactive and Functional Polymers , 51 (1), p. 25. ISSN 1381-5148


Tiernan, M., Fesenko, E., Barnes, P., Parkes, G. and Ronane, M. (2001) ‘The application of CRTA and linear heating thermoanalytical techniques to the study of supported cobalt oxide methane combustion catalystsThermochimica Acta , 379 (1-2), pp. 163-175. ISSN 0040-6031

Tiernan, M., Barnes, P. and Parkes, G. (2001) ‘Reduction of iron oxide catalysts: the investigation of kinetic parameters using rate perturbation and linear heating thermoanalytical techniquesJournal of Physical Chemistry B , 105, pp. 220-228. ISSN 1089-5647

Barnes, P., Fesenko, E., Parkes, G., Brown, D. and Naderi, M. (2001) ‘A new approach to the study of the reactivity of solid-acid catalysts: the application of constant rate thermal analysis to the desorption and surface reaction of isopropylamine from NaY and HY zeolitesJournal of Physical Chemistry B , 105, pp. 6178-6185. ISSN 1089-5647

Research Degree Supervision

1. The Microwave Thermal Analysis of Materials

Microwave thermal analysis is a new materials characterization technique that can detect thermal processes such as phase changes, decomposition, etc., via changes in a material’s dielectric properties as revealed by its ability to couple with microwave energy as a function of temperature.

2. New Approaches to the Preparation and Activation of Carbon Adsorbents

Activated carbons have an important role in the removal of contaminants and pollutants, both in air and water, through physical adsorption. The choice of pre-cursor, carbonisation, surface treatment and pore development steps are all crucial in determining the properties of the product carbon.

  • Activation of a Phenolic Resin-Derived Carbon in Air using Microwave Thermogravimetry, Howard M. Williams and Gareth M.B. Parkes, Carbon (46) 2008.
  • A Study of the Activation of Carbon Using Sample Controlled Thermal Analysis, E. A. Dawson Contact Information, G. M. B. Parkes, P. A. Barnes, M. J. Chinn and P. R. Norman, Journal of Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry 56(1) 1999.

3. Sample Controlled Thermal Analysis in the Preparation and Characterization of Adsorbent and Catalytic Materials

In conventional thermal analysis, the heating rate is pre-set and is followed regardless of any processes undergone by the sample. This leads to non-homogeneous conditions that reduce the resolution between adjacent thermal events and the reliability of kinetic measurements. Sample controlled thermal analysis (SCTA) is the generic name used to describe a family of techniques where the heating rate is not pre-determined but altered as some function of a property of the sample (i.e. mass loss, rate of gas evolution, etc.). SCTA can provide increased resolution and kinetic information but can also be adapted to the preparation of materials that involve a thermal processing step
  • Fesenko, E. A., Barnes, Philip A. and Parkes, Gareth M.B (2004) SCTA and catalysis. In: Sample Controlled Thermal Analysis. Hot Topics in Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry, 3 . Springer, New York, USA, pp. 174-225. ISBN 978-1-4020-1563-2
  • New Concepts in Sample Controlled Thermal Analysis: Resolution in the Time and Temperature Domains, G. M. B. Parkes, P. A. Barnes and E. L. Charsley, Anal. Chem., 71 (13), 2482 -2487, 1999
  • An investigation of the porosity of carbons prepared by constant rate activation in air, E. A. Dawson, G. M. B. Parkes, P. A. Barnes, M. J. Chinn, Carbon (41-3), 2003, pages 571-578

Postgraduate research opportunities with Dr Gareth Parkes

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