Professor Michael N R Ashfold

B.Sc., Ph.D.(Birm.), C.Chem., F.R.S.C., F.Inst.P., FRS

  • BS8 1TS

1977 …2020

Research output per year

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Personal profile

Research interests


Detailed studies of the UV photochemistry and photophysics of gas phase molecules using a variety of state-of-the-art laser based techniques including H atom photofragment translational spectroscopy and velocity map ion imaging, and complementary electronic structure calculations. Current activities include extension of these methods to allow study of larger, less volatile (bio)molecules in the gas phase, the application of multimass imaging methods, and using ultrafast time-resolved pump-probe methods to explore the UV photochemistry and photophysics of such molecules in solution.


Growth and characterisation of diamond thin films grown by chemical vapour deposition (CVD). Current interest centres on exploring the gas phase and gas-surface chemistry that underpins CVD of diamond (and doped diamond) in microwave reactors using a range of laser and optical emission spectroscopy methods, plasma modelling, and QM/MM modelling of the gas-surface reactions.


Pulsed laser ablation and deposition as a route to forming nanostructured thin films, focussing particular on detailed investigations of the laser-target and laser-plume interactions through careful analysis of temporally, spatially and wavelength resolved images of optical emission from the ablation plume.


Professor Ashfold is a supervisor in the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Diamond Science and Technology.


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Research Output

Effects of ring-strain on the ultrafast photochemistry of cyclic ketones

Kao, M-H., Venkatraman, R. K., Ashfold, M. N. R. & Orr-Ewing, A. J., 13 Jan 2020, In : Chemical Science. 11, p. 1991-2000 10 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

Open Access
  • 62 Downloads (Pure)

    Nitrogen in Diamond

    Ashfold, M. N. R., Goss, J. P., Green, B. L., May, P. W., Newton, M. E. & Peaker, C. V., 24 Jun 2020, In : Chemical Reviews. 120, p. 5745-5794 50 p., 12.

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview article (Academic Journal)

  • Optical Emission Imaging and Modelling Investigations of Microwave Activated SiH4/H2 and SiH4/CH4/H2 Plasmas

    Mahoney, E. J. D., Ashfold, M. N. R., Mankelevich, Y. A. & Truscott, B. S., 25 Jun 2020, In : Journal of Physical Chemistry A. 124, p. 5109-5128

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

  • Datasets

    Reactivity of Singlet Oxygen with Biomolecular Constituents

    Karsili, T. (Creator), Marchetti, B. (Creator), Ashfold, M. (Creator) & Ashfold, M. N. R. (Data Manager), University of Bristol, 16 Aug 2016


    Ultrafast Chemical Dynamics: CN radical reactions in solution in acetonitrile.

    McMullen, R. (Creator), Coulter, P. (Creator), Ashfold, M. N. R. (Creator), Grubb, M. (Creator), Roettger, K. (Creator), Ingle, R. (Creator), Dunning, G. (Creator), Roberts, G. (Creator), Koyama, D. (Creator), Murdock, D. (Creator), Marroux, H. (Creator), Sage, A. (Creator), Orr-Ewing, A. J. (Creator), Harris, S. (Creator) & Warren, J. (Creator), University of Bristol, 2 Nov 2015



    Kyoto University

    Michael N R Ashfold (Visitor)

    17 Aug 201419 Aug 2014

    Activity: Visiting an external institution typesVisiting an external academic institution

    European Material Research Society Spring Meeting

    Michael N R Ashfold (Speaker)

    30 May 2013

    Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesInvited talk

    University of Southern California

    Michael N R Ashfold (Visiting researcher)


    Activity: Visiting an external institution typesVisiting an external academic institution

    Supervised Work

    Alternative Excitation Mechanisms Occurring within Microwave-activated Plasmas under Conditions Relevant to the Chemical Vapour Deposition of Diamond

    Author: Mahoney, E. J. D., 1 Oct 2019

    Supervisor: Ashfold, M. (Supervisor) & Western, C. (Supervisor)

    Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy (PhD)


    Exploring novel excited state dynamics using multi-mass ion imaging and universal ionisation

    Author: Bain, M., 6 Dec 2019

    Supervisor: Ashfold, M. N. R. (Supervisor)

    Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy (PhD)


    Fundamental studies of pulsed laser ablation.

    Author: Claeyssens, F., 2001

    Supervisor: Ashfold, M. (Supervisor)

    Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy (PhD)