Alex Dudgeon


Telephone: 01392 724068 

College: College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Sciences
Discipline: Physics and Astronomy
Department: Physics
Research Centre/Unit: Biophysics Research Group

I am a research fellow in the Biomedical Spectroscopy Team in the Biophysics Group working with Prof Nick Stone at The University of Exeter. My current work is on the Raman needle project which is seeking to diagnose lymphomas with a fibre-optic needle, with minimal invasivity.

I recently finished working on my PhD at Durham University, where I also graduated from with a BSc (Hons) and MSc in Chemistry. For my PhD thesis in Professor Colin Bain’s group, funded by Unilever and The EPSRC through a CASE award, I designed and built a total-internal reflection Raman spectrometer. This technique utilises the evanescent field produced during total-internal reflection to excite molecules close to the interface. Using the spectrometer, I investigated the adsorption of surfactants to the liquid-solid interface. The research focused on the kinetics of adsorption, obtaining isotherms and forming mono/bi-layers of various ionic and nonionic surfactants on surfaces including silica, polyester and zeolite. A major part of the project was the design and construction of the spectrometer, during which I developed the skills needed to design and manipulate optics to obtain good signal to noise levels.

Additionally in Professor Bain’s group, my research MSc investigated the processes by which water and surfactant solutions penetrate macroscopic, horizontal, hydrophilic glass capillaries. I also investigated capillaries made hydrophobic by silanisation. To record the penetration rate, the meniscus, illuminated by collimated laser light, was tracked using a high-speed camera. Theoretical models (The Lucas-Washburn model, a “Young” model and an overflowing-cylinder model) were compared with our experimental data and the models were shown to be unable to account for the observed penetration rates. Instead, we considered the additional dissipation in the wedge of liquid near the three-phase contact line.

Alex's University of Exeter Webpage

Alex's Personal Website