Richard Blackburn

Associate Professor and Head of The Sustainable Materials Research Group, University of Leeds

Dr Blackburn’s key areas of research focus around the principles of sustainability and how these principles can be applied in the fields of materials science, coloration technology and cosmetics. His research is important in terms of the contribution to basic research, fundamental discoveries, and influence on the direction of the field, making a significant contribution to the scientific community. His research also has significant impact in its application in terms of providing more sustainable products and processes for industry and society. Co-founder and director of spin-out company Keracol Limited.

In 2013 he was made a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Dyers of The City of London, and was given The Freedom of The City of London. In 2016 he was awarded the Silver Medal of the Society of Dyers and Colourists for “Prolonged contributions to education and academic research”. In 2017 he was awarded the Fellowship of the Society of Dyers and Colourists. In 2018 he was Dr Richard Blackburn awarded The Society of Dyers and Colourists Centenary Medal.

ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-6259-3807

Research Interests
- Sustainability issues within the textiles, coloration and finishing industries
- Physical organic chemistry of fundamental interactions between dye molecules and polymers
- Dye chemistry, chemical properties of dyes and structure colour relationships, particularly natural dyes such as anthocyanins and colorants used to dye textiles historically
- Polymer chemistry, particularly fundamental understanding of polysaccharide chemistry and cellulose I and cellulose II crystallinity. Also, development of novel methods of analysing and quantifying cellulose crystallinity.
- Extraction of natural products and application in cosmetics, particularly in natural products chemistry; applied research has focused on clean extraction techniques for isolation of actives from plants and the development of cosmetic products

Experience

  • 2011–present
    Director, Keracol Limited
  • –present
    Associate Professor and Head of The Sustainable Materials Research Group, University of Leeds

Education

  • 2000 
    University of Leeds, PhD Colour Chemistry
  • 1996 
    University of Leeds, BSc Colour Chemistry

Professional Memberships

  • American Chemical Society
  • Society of Dyers and Colourists

Honours

In 2013 he was made a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Dyers of The City of London, and was given The Freedom of The City of London. In 2016 he was awarded the Silver Medal of the Society of Dyers and Colourists for “Prolonged contributions to education and academic research”. In 2017 he was awarded the Fellowship of the Society of Dyers and Colourists. In 2018 he was Dr Richard Blackburn awarded The Society of Dyers and Colourists Centenary Medal.