Dr Josh Makepeace

Dr Josh Makepeace

School of Chemistry
Associate Professor in Materials Chemistry
UKRI Future Leaders Fellow

Contact details

University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Dr Josh Makepeace is a Associate Professor in Chemistry at the University of Birmingham and UKRI Future Leaders Fellow.

Josh’s research focuses on the synthesis and characterisation of inorganic solids containing nitrogen-based anions. A particular focus is on the development of materials for energy storage applications, from storing hydrogen and catalysing the synthesis/decomposition of ammonia for use as sustainable fuels, to electrolytes and electrodes for batteries and fuel cells.


  • DPhil (PhD) in Inorganic Chemistry, University of Oxford, 2015
  • BSc(Hons), Flinders University of South Australia, 2009


Josh studied for a Bachelor of Science (Honours) with an Extended Major in Chemistry at Flinders University of South Australia from 2006-2009, including a research visit at the South Australian Museum.

After working in the School of Biotechnology at Flinders University on a project detecting chemical pollutants in waterways, Josh moved to the UK to take up a DPhil (PhD) in Inorganic Chemistry at the University of Oxford. His doctoral work explored the mechanisms of reversible solid state hydrogen storage and ammonia decomposition catalysis in light metal amides, and was supervised by Professor Bill David FRS and Professor Peter Edwards FRS.

Josh was awarded his DPhil in 2015 and then took up a position as a Project Scientist at the ISIS Neutron and Muon Facility working on a proof-of-concept demonstration of powering a fuel cell from decomposed ammonia. He then started a Junior Research Fellowship at St John’s College, Oxford, expanding the application of metal amides and imides as ammonia decomposition catalysts.

Josh joined the School of Chemistry in 2019 as a Lecturer and UKRI Future Leaders Fellow.

Postgraduate supervision

Josh is always happy to discuss potential research projects with interested students, who should contact him on the email address above. Projects are available in the following areas:

  • New catalysts for ammonia synthesis and decomposition
  • Ionic conductivity in metal amides/imides
  • Synthesis of silicon imide materials

For a full list of available Doctoral Research opportunities, please visit our Doctoral Research programme listings.


  • Sustainable energy storage
  • Ammonia as a fuel
  • Hydrogen storage
  • Solid state chemistry
  • Metal-nitrogen-hydrogen materials
  • Powder diffraction

Other activities

  • Member, Royal Society of Chemistry
  • Member, American Chemical Society
  • Member, British Crystallographic Association


Selected recent publications

View all publications in research portal