Professor, School of Chemistry


John Irvine CBE, FRSE, FRSC has made a unique and world-leading contribution to the science of energy materials, especially fuel cell and energy conversion technologies. This research has ranged from detailed fundamental to strategic and applied science and has had major impact across academia, industry and government. Irvine’s science is highly interdisciplinary extending from Chemistry and Materials through physics, bioenergy, geoscience, engineering, economics and policy. The quality and impact of Irvine’s research has been recognised by a number of national and international awards, including the Royal Society Hughes Medal in 2021, the Royal Society of Edinburgh Lord Kelvin Medal in 2018, the Schönbeim gold medal from the European Fuel Cell Forum in 2016, the RSC Sustainable Energy Award in 2015, with earlier RSC recognition via Materials Chemistry, Bacon and Beilby awards/medals. Highlights of Irvine’s activities include discovery of the Emergent nanomaterials phenomenon, establishing the field of oxide fuel electrodes, delivering high performance.

In June 2024, John was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the King’s Birthday Honours list for his services to the UK’s Green Economy.

Selected publications

“High oxide ion and proton conductivity in a disordered hexagonal perovskite”. S. Fop, KS. McCombie, EJ. Wildman, JMS. Skakle, JTS. Irvine, PA. Connor, CD. Savaniu, C. Ritter, AC. McLaughlin. Nat. Mater. 2020. 19, 752-757

“Lattice strain-enhanced exsolution of nanoparticles in thin films”. H. Han, J. Park, SY. Nam, GM. Choi, SSP. Parkin, HM. Jang, JTS. Irvine. Nat. Commun. 2019. 10, 1471 “Enhanced CO2 electrolysis at redox manipulated interfaces”. W. Wang, L. Gan, JP. Lemmon, F. Chen, JTS. Irvine, K. Xie. Nat. Commun. 2019. 10, 1550

“Chemistry at a point: restructuring and catalytic activation at anchored nanoparticles”, D. Neagu, E.I. Papaioannou, W.K.W. Raml3, D.N. Miller, B.J. Murdoch, H. Ménard, A. Umar, A.J. Barlow, P.J. Cumpson, J.T.S. Irvine and I.S. Metcalfe, Nat. Commun.2017, 8, 1855

“Switching on electrocatalytic activity in solid oxide cells”, J-H. Myung, D. Neagu, D.N.. Miller & JTS. Irvine, Nature, 2016. 537, 528-531 “Evolution of the electrochemical interface in high-temperature fuel cells and electrolysers”. JTS. Irvine, D. Neagu, MC. Verbraeken, C. Chatzichristodoulou, C. Graves, MB. Mogensen. Nat. Energy. 2016, 1, 15014