Over recent years the Lennard-Jones Laboratories have undergone extensive refurbishment and upgrades in response to our increasing research demands and increasing student numbers with over 250 chemistry undergraduates using our facilities. For the future construction has already started on our new exciting Central Science Laboratory which is an integral part of the Lennard-Jones which will open in September 2019 and double our teaching capacity.  Alongside this the rest of the Lennard-Jones will be refurbished including research laboratories, the lecture theatre, break out spaces and a new frontage, all due for completion in 2020. 


Keele Chemistry's philosophy is that instrumentation is used for both research and teaching, meaning that our undergraduates have the opportunity to be trained on the most up-to-date equipment. We have have invested over £2M in new instruments over the past 5 years and we have a renewal programme which ensures that our equipment is kept up to date and to industry standards.


KeeleUni_Oct15_114 x198h Lennard-Jones



The Multi Lab - our undergraduate teaching Lab

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 The Undergraduate Research Laboratory

The undergraduate reasearch laboratory in the Lennard Jones building has had a recent refurbishment. Click here for a 360° tour of our upgraded and refurbished laboratory.



Below are all the upgrades and new builds we have made in the last 10 years and the dates in which our new facilities will come on stream.


2020 - Lennard-Jones Refurbishment


2019 - Central Science Laboratory


2017 - MChem and Masters hot-desking room


2016 - Undergraduate research lab upgrade more that doubling the fumehood capacity


2014 - NMR facility upgraded to enable the installation of our first 400MHz NMR spectrometer which was joined by a second 400MHz NMR in 2018


2014 - X-ray facility relocated and enlarged to accommodate two more instruments a single crystal and a powder diffractometer


2010 - Multilab opened - a purpose built 21st century chemistry teaching laboratory including fumehood facilities and a spectroscopy suite


2007 - Birchall Centre refurbishment to create enhanced facilities for fuel cell, solid state and catalysis research

Analytical and Spectroscopic equipment at Keele

Meet our kit! Take your pick from the spectrometers and instruments we have to offer, find out what they do and where they are used in our undergraduate courses.


Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (NMR)

NMR Bert x200 Meet Bert and Ernie! 

Our twin 400 mHz NMR spectrometers are used by all years of the chemistry and medicinal chemistry BSc and MChem courses and you will be trained how to use them from Year 1.

NMR is one of the most powerful analytical techniques for discovering the structure of new chemical compounds.

Ernie is the newest of spectrometers, arriving in Spring 2018. Bert is capable of looking at both solid and solution samples and is used a lot in Research Projects.

NMR Ernie x200



   X-ray Diffraction (XRD)




XRD 1 x200  

The school has 3 X-ray diffractometers.


1.Single Crystal – you guessed it, one crystal at time!

2. in-situ – for following reactions.

3. Powder – for identification of materials.


X-ray diffraction is the way chemists ‘take pictures’ of molecules that are in a solid state. 


Used in the Year 2 modules and for Research Projects in Years 3 and 4.


XRD 2 x200


XRD 3 x200  



Quadrupole Time Of Flight Liquid Chromatography Mass Spectrometer (Q-TOF)

QTOF x200

Accurate mass is an essential tool for synthetic chemists.  When you make a new molecule you have to find out its structure and the Q-TOF can help you do this by accurately weighing a molecule to 4 decimal places, accurately enough to be able to determine its elemental composition.  

How does the Q-TOF work? it literally measures how long it takes from an ion to travel from A to B and that is determined by its mass. The tube sticking up is the flight tube. 

Used as part of research projects in Years3and 4.



Fourier Transform Infra-red Spectrometry (FT-IR)

Chemistry is home to 10 Infra-red spectrometers. 

This technique is one of the most used characterisation methods in Chemistry. Infra-red radiation is absorbed by chemical bonds and it makes them vibrate so by looking to see what IR radiation is absorbed we can determine the bonds within a molecule. 

They are used throughout the chemistry, medicinal chemistry courses during Years 1, 2 and 3 and in the Research Projects.

IR x400


Inductively Coupled Plasma- Optical Emission Spectrometry (ICP-OES)

ICP-OES x300

Like a big flame test! (Only at 28,000 °C)


The ICP allows you to identify the ions in a solution and to accurately determine their concentration.


Used as part of the Year 2 modules and for Research Projects in Years 3 and 4.


Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (GC-MS)


Gas chromatography is an excellent way of separating mixtures of volatile compounds and then mass spectrometry (literally weighing the molecule) gives you a unique signature for each compound which allows you to identify the structure.


Used as part of the Year 2 modules and for Research Projects in Years 3 and 4.

GCMS x300


Ultraviolet-Visible Spectrometry  (UV-Vis)

UV1 x200

UV-Vis spectroscopy is excellent for following the rate of reactions of molecules that contain chromophores, groups that absorb visible and UV light.  You will get to analyse everything from alcopops to sunscreens!


They are extensively used in the chemistry and medicinal chemistry courses in Years 1 and 2 and for Research Projects in Years 3 and 4.



UV 2 x200



High-Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC)

HPLC x300

Ever wondered how performance enhancing drugs are detected in athletes?


HPLC is extensively used in Drug Testing and the Pharmaceutical Industry.  It is an excellent method of separating polar organic molecules in an aqueous environment and is one of the most commonly used analytical techniques today.


Used as part of the Year 2 modules and for Research Projects in Years 3and 4.


Raman Spectroscopy

The microscope allows you to identify specific sites on a surface and then you can use the Raman spectrometer to take a spectrum of the surface.


It is used for mapping the surface of materials such as catalysts and supports.


Used as part of the Year 3 modules and in the Research Projects.

Ramen x300


Fluorescence Spectroscopy

Florencence x300



Some molecules absorb radiation at one wavelength and then give it back out at another wavelength. The optical brighteners in washing powders do this to get you the ‘whiter than white ‘ look


They are used in Years 1 and 2 and in the Research Projects in Years 3 and 4



Gas Chromatography (GC)

 These are used for separating mixtures of volatile compounds such as perfumes, essential oils and petroleum products. The compounds move between a liquid phase and a gas phase and are separated by size – the small molecules move fastest and polarity.


Used as part of the Year 2 modules and for research projects in Years 3 and 4.

GC x300


Elemental Analysis (CHNSO)

CHNSO x300

If you want to find out how much carbon hydrogen or nitrogen is in your compounds then Elemental Analysis is the technique to use.  This analytical technique is over 200 years old, and simply involves burning a known amount of a compound in pure oxygen and accurately determining the mass of water carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxides is produced.


Used as part of research projects in Year 3and 4.