Dr Andrew Burnett


After completing my studies at the University of Bradford in chemistry with forensic science in 2004, I gained my PhD in Electronic and Electrical Engineering from the University of Leeds in 2008. I then continued my work at Leeds, firstly as a posdoctoral fellow funded firstly under the FP6 TERANOVA project and then under a Leverhulme Trust project to understand the THz spectral porperties of protein crystals. In 2011 I was awarded an EPSRC Posdoctoral Fellowship and moved to the Faculty of Biological Sciences in Leeds where I continued my work on the THz spectra of biological molecules. In 2015 I moved to the School of Chemistry as the Teaching Fellow for Physical Chemistry. In 2016 I was awarded an EPSRC Early Career Fellowship and became a University Academic Fellow in 2017.


  • EPSRC Early Career Fellow

Research interests

My research interests are focused on the development and application of spectroscopic techniques at terahertz (THz) frequencies (0.1 – 10 THz, 3.3 – 333.3 cm–1). In particular, I have spent the last 10 years developing THz-time domain spectroscopy (THz-TDS) and using it to look at a range of samples including explosives, drugs-of-abuse, pharmaceutically relevant polymorphs and proteins. A large amount of my time has also been spent on the application of solid-state density functional theory to understand and interpret THz and infrared spectra of crystalline materials, in this regard I have co-authored an analysis code PDielec which calculates the infrared absorption characteristics of a crystalline material supported in a non absorbing medium by post processesing the output of solid state quantum mechanical and molecular mechanical calculations of the phonons or dielectric response of the crystalline material.

My more recent work will concentrate on the development of non-linear or multidimensional THz spectroscopic techniques to study vibrational coupling, dynamics and energy transfer at THz frequencies.


  • PhD in Electrical Engineering, University of Leeds (2008)
  • MChem in Chemistry with Pharmaceutical and Forensic Science, University of Bradford (2004)

Student education

I am part of the Physical Chemistry teaching section. On top of the regular physical chemistry tutorials and teaching labs I also teach soloution equlibria, titrations and electrochemistry. 

Research groups and institutes

  • Computational Chemistry and Chemical Physics

Postgraduate research opportunities

We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our research opportunities allow you to search for projects and scholarships.