Cathy McCullagh Profile
Title: Dr
First Name: Cathy
Surname: McCullagh
Position: Lecturer
Telephone: +44 (0)1224 262353

Key Duties and Responsibilities

Research responsibilities:

  • Supervising PhD students
  • Preparation of grant proposals and publications
  • PGCert Research Methods Course Management Team committee member.
  • Departmental Research Committee member

Reviewer for: Environmental Science & Technology, Applied Catalysis A: General, Journal of Photoenergy, Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiology A: Chemistry, Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiology B: Biology, Photochemistry and Photobiology.

Teaching responsibilities:

  • EN3590 Environmental Engineering
  • EN4571 Renewable Energy Systems
  • EN1700 Statics and Dynamics

Academic Background

  • BSc Science (Gen), National University of Ireland, Galway (1995)
  • Graduate Diploma Pure & Applied Chemistry, Queens University Belfast (1996)
  • MSc Environmental Chemistry, Queens University Belfast (1997)
  • PhD Chemistry Queens University Belfast (2001) "Removal of heavy metals from waster-water using polyelectrolyte chelates".

Research Interests / Professional Background

Cathy's main research interests lie within the field of environmental chemistry specifically photochemistry and within this coatings and reactor development. Many of the projects which have been successfully funded are concerned with waste water treatment and improving current methods. Photocatalytic reactor development is key to this research.

After her PhD she worked as a post doc at the University of Ulster, Jordanstown on an EU funded project. She was responsible for the preparation of solar active photoanodes which were integrated into a photo chemical cell for the photolysis of water into hydrogen and oxygen and conversion of CO2 into useful hydrocarbons.

She joined the centre in January 2003 and started work on BIODAM, an EU funded project. This was a cultural heritage project funded by the EU under the fifth framework for energy, environment and sustainable development. Collaboration was between groups from Germany, Spain and Finland, investigating the use of photodynamic therapy for the destruction of biofilm growth on buildings of historical importance.

Cathy has been successful in gaining three KTP awards one with Dynamic Equipment Company which investigated environmental benign liquids for the dissolution of calcite deposits in well bores. The second and third KTP projects were awarded in conjunction with Sureclean. The first investigated an integrated waste treatment system capable of treating both solid and liquid wastes from various industries. This was a very successful project and was awarded the highest grade 'Outstanding' by the KTP grading panel. The project was also short-listed for the KTP Scotland awards in 2010. The second project, which is currently ongoing, is looking into polymer based materials for the clean-up of oily waste water and sludge.

In May 2010 Cathy was awarded an EPSRC collaborative grant. This project is in conjunction with academics from University of Aberdeen, University of St. Andrews and University of Strathclyde. The project focuses on using photochemistry for organic synthesis. RGU are responsible for the development of a suitable photocatalytic reactor for this work.

Additional Information / Media work / Funding

  • September 2006 KTP project with Dynamic Equipment Company.
  • April 2007 KTP project with Sureclean Ltd.
  • July 2007 NRP PhD studentship with Dynamic Equipment Company and University of Aberdeen
  • April 2009 KTP project with Sureclean Ltd.
  • May 2010 EPSRC collaborative project funded with University of Aberdeen, University of St. Andrews and University of Strathclyde.
  • October 2010 One-year studentship funding with Atlantic Water Co. Ltd.

Professional Body Membership

  • MRSC, CChem
  • CSci

Key Publications

  1. McCullagh Cathy; Skillen Nathan; Adams Morgan; Robertson Peter K.J. Photocatalytic reactors for environmental remediation: a review Journal of Chemical Technology and Biotechnology 2011 (86) 1002-1017 doi:10.1002/jctb.2650.
  2. Salu Olumide Adegboyega; Adams Morgan; Robertson Peter K. J. McCullagh Cathy, Remediation of oily wastewater from an interceptor tank using a novel photocatalytic drum reactor. Desalination and Water Treatment 2011 (26) 87-91 doi:10.5004/dwt.2011.2114
  3. Cathy McCullagh, Peter K.J. Robertson, Morgan Adams, Pat M. Pollard, Abdulrahman Mohammed, Development of a slurry continuous flow reactor for photocatalytic treatment of industrial waste water Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiology A: Chemistry, 2010(211), Pages 42-46
  4. T.P. Tim Cushnie, Peter K.J. Robertson, Simon Officer, Pat M. Pollard, Radhakrishna Prabhu, Cathy McCullagh, Jeanette M.C. Robertson Photobactericidal effects of TiO2 thin films at low temperatures—A preliminary study Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiology A: Chemistry, 2010 (216) 290-294