skip to primary navigationskip to content

Takashi Lawson

Takashi Lawson

PhD Student in Optofluidics



I am a PhD student at Corpus Christi College, who joined the NanoDTC in 2017. Previously, I completed a master’s degree in materials science at the University of Oxford, where my final-year project involved the modelling and fabrication of optical memory and solid-state reflective displays. 

My PhD research focuses on new methods to screen photocatalysts – particularly those that can split water into hydrogen and oxygen under solar illumination. Current methods for gauging the performance of photocatalysts rely on ex-situ methods (i.e. gas chromatography) that are time-consuming and do not give much insight into the reaction itself. Using hollow-core photonic crystal fibres, we can track photochemical reactions in-operando by infiltrating the fibre with a liquid sample. We benefit from the guidance properties of, and nanolitre sample volumes within, the optical fibre, which enhances the light-matter interaction by around five orders of magnitude. This enables the detection of reaction species at extremely low concentrations, and the tiny sample volumes allow you to screen multiple reaction conditions when your photocatalysts are particularly expensive. 


Optical spectroscopy ; Raman spectroscopy ; Renewable energy ; Microfluidics ; Energy harvesting ; NanoPhotonics ; Artificial Photosynthesis ; Nanotechnology ; Catalysis ; Water Splitting

RSS Feed Latest news

Admissions - 3rd round interviews

Feb 03, 2020

We will be holding a 3rd round of interviews on 5th March, for entry into our Oct 2020 cohort. Please apply by 17 Feb to be considered for shortlisting. See for more information.

Midi+PhD Project Proposals from Cambridge Academics

Jan 28, 2020

We are now accepting project proposals for Midi (May-Jul 2020) + PhD projects (starting Oct 2020) for our c2019 students. Deadline 20 Feb.

Inspiring the next generation of scientists

Aug 09, 2019

Demelza Wright and Taylor Uekert, both cohort 2016 students, have featured in the Inspirational Scientist Video series put together by Cambridge University Press Education.