Pete Licence

Green Chemicals Beacon Deputy Director and Sustainable Chemistry Lead

Phone: +44 (0)115 84 66176


Peter Licence is Professor in Chemistry at the University of Nottingham where he is also inaugural Director of the GlaxoSmithKline Carbon Neutral Laboratories for Sustainable Chemistry, a new-build facility focused on the delivery of sustainable chemistry solutions for the fine chemicals and pharmaceuticals sectors. Pete is also the Director of the EPSRC & SFI CDT in Sustainable Chemistry which aims to train future leaders in molecular sciences aligned to achieving the goals of the UN-SDGs.

Expertise relevant to Green Chemicals

A synthetic organic chemist by training, Licence offers experience in the design and preparation of ultra-high purity functionalised ionic liquids that are bespoke for a specific task.  The key driver of Licence’s research is the development of an in-depth knowledge of interactions and processes at interfaces and discontinuities.  Interfaces are crucial regions in most processes spanning extraction, catalysis and small molecule sensing. Licence is widely credited with the discovery of ionic liquids based surface science and over the past 15 years has defined many of the methods used in the measurement, charge referencing and fitting of XPS spectra of liquids-based samples.

3 goals in the area of Green Chemicals

  • To engage in transdisciplinary activity that is aligned to address global challenges in terms of sustainable chemicals production.
  • To develop understanding in the weaker interactions that facilitate changes in chemical state and/or functionality of molecules, aggregates, surfaces and solutions – catalysis, sensing and function.
  • To underpin the development of talent in the field of molecular sciences to ensure that sustainability is encoded in all activities, processes and products.

Recent publications related to Green Chemicals 

C–F Bond Activation of a Perfluorinated Ligand Leading to Nucleophilic Fluorination of an Organic Electrophile, P. J. Morgan, M. W. D. Hanson-Heine, H. P Thomas, G. C. Saunders*, A. C. Marr* and P. Licence*, Organometallics, 2020, 39, 2116-2124.


World-class research at the University of Nottingham

University Park
+44 (0) 115 951 5151
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