Welcome to the website for the Armes Research Group at the University of Sheffield.

Please feel free to navigate around our site and get in touch if you have any queries!


We are located in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Sheffield. We have wide-ranging interests in synthetic polymer chemistry, soft matter and colloid science.

We employ various synthetic techniques including conventional free radical polymerisation (FRP), atom transfer radical polymerisation (ATRP) and reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerisation. Recent advances in RAFT-mediated polymerisation-induced self-assembly (PISA) has enabled the efficient preparation of diblock copolymers in the form of sterically-stabilised nanoparticles at up to 50% solids. PISA is a versatile and generic platform technology that works well in water, polar solvents such as lower alcohols or non-polar solvents (e.g. n-alkanes, mineral oil or silicone oil). The preparation and application of a range of materials manufactured via RAFT-PISA has been a recent focus of the group

This website contains details of our recent research, publications and collaborators, as well as information about group members both past and present. Please also see photographs of our instruments and our group members. If you wish to get in touch, please contact us.


Professor Steve Armes FRS is a chemist at the University of Sheffield who works in the fields of synthetic polymer chemistry and colloid science.

Steve obtained his BSc in Chemistry from the University of Bristol in 1983 and received his PhD from the same institution in 1987. After a postdoctoral fellowship at Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico, he accepted a lectureship at Sussex University in 1989 and was promoted to a personal chair in 2000. He moved to Sheffield in 2004 and is now the Firth Professor of Polymer and Colloid Chemistry.

Steve served as the academic Director of the Sheffield Polymer Centre for more than a decade and currently leads a £7.1 million EPSRC CDT in Polymers, Soft Matter and Colloids that involves 33 industrial sponsors. He is also a non-salaried Director on the board of Farapack Polymers, a University spin-out company. Steve was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2014. Recently, his research has been recognised by the 2016 DSM Materials Science Award, the 2017 ECIS-Solvay Prize, the 2018 RSC Macro Group Prize for outstanding achievement, the 2018 Royal Society Armourers and Brasiers' Company Prize, the 2020 RSC Biophysical Chemistry Award, the 2020 SCI Innovation in Formulation Award and the 2021 Sir Eric Rideal Lectureship (a lifetime award for his contribution to colloid science).