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Dr Eleanor Crabb

Profile summary

  • Central Academic Staff
  • Senior Lecturer in Materials Chemistry
  • Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics
  • School of Life, Health & Chemical Sciences
  • eleanor.crabb

Professional biography

I obtained a BSc. in Chemistry at The University of Reading where I stayed to complete a PhD with Professor Robbie Burch in Heterogenous Catalysis. After a brief spell at Reading as a postdoc,  I moved to the Laboratoire de Chimie Organique Physique et Cinetique Chimique Appliquees in Montpellier, France to work with Bernard Coq and Francois Figueras as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow. I then returned to the UK to The Open University, where I have worked in a number of different roles, taking up my current position as a Senior Lecturer in Materials Chemistry in October 2009.

I am currently the Director of Teaching for the School of Life, Health and Chemical Sciences and also the Qualification Director for Natural Sciences.

Research interests

My main research interests are in the field of heterogeneous catalysts, in particular catalyst preparation.

Recent projects include:

  • Preparation of mixed oxides as oxygen storage components
  • Development of anode electrocatalysts for direct methanol fuel cells (DMFC)
  • Design of reformate tolerant anode catalysts for the PEMFC
  • Preparation of supported alloy catalysts for oxygen reduction (cathode) for the PEMFC
  • Preparation of oxide promoted Pt/alumina catalysts for the preferential oxidation of carbon monoxide in a hydrogen rich stream (PROX)
  • Ceria modification of Pt catalysts for the water gas shift reaction
  • Preparation of bimetallic catalysts for selective hydrogenation

Catalysts have been characterised using a number of different techniques including EXAFS studies with Professor Andrea Russell at The University of Southampton.

I am also interested in educational research, particularly in the use of eLearning to support students and in delivering online practical experience.

Please see the Publications tab or visit Open Research Online for further information.




Teaching interests

As the Director of Teaching for the School of Life, Health and Chemical Sciences I chair the School's Board of Studies and oversee the undergraduate and taught postgraduate curriculum within the School. I am also the Qualification Director for Natural Sciences, in which role I chair the Examination and Assessment Board for students on all pathways within our Natural Sciences qualifications.

Prior to this I was the Associate Programme Director for chemistry and analytical science I oversee the Chemistry and analytical sciences pathway of the BSc Natural Science.

I have been involved in the production of a number of our modules, most recently as the production chair for S315, Chemistry: further concepts and applications - our new 60 credit chemistry module at level 3. This module covers all three traditional areas of chemistry and is delivered entirely online. It was presented for the first time in October 2015.

Prior to this I was the production team chair for S347 Metals and Life, one of the predecessor modules for S315, which copublished two texts with the Royal Society of Chemistry.

I was also oversaw the production of many of the online investigations in SXC288 Practical Science: Chemistry and analytical science.  Previously I was a member of the production team on the physical chemistry course and author of a case study on  "The Three-way Catalytic convertor" can be found on OpenLearn).

I have particular interests in online learning including:

  • delivering practical work online
  • online classrooms
  • quizzes
  • accessibility issues

and have eSTEeM projects in some of these areas.



Research Activity

Research groups

NameTypeParent Unit
Centre for Earth, Planetary, Space and Astronomical Research (CEPSAR)CentreFaculty of Science

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