Dr Chris Garvey

Instrument Scientist
Bragg Institute
Phone - +61 2 9717 9328


Role at ANSTO


Dr Garvey is a research scientist who applies advanced physical characterisations at the interface between biology and materials science. As well as his role as an instrument scientist on the small-angle neutron scattering instrument QUOKKA, Chris’ research explores an underlying theme which is the difference between the behaviour of molecules singly, and as ensembles, or in more complicated mixtures such as cells and their components (e.g. organelles, walls, membranes).The differences are due to the intermolecular interactions, and interactions between molecules and the host matrix. A particular focus has been cell walls of plants, and the industrially important group of materials called cellulosics.  


Small-angle scattering and contrast variation are important tools for his research.  Chris develops novel measurement environments which further extend the utility of the small-angle scattering technique.



Scattering techniques, solid-state NMR, biomacromolecules, diffusion, soft-condensed matter physics, soil science, science education.


Qualifications & Achievements


  • PI ARC Discovery grant, "Origami with triblock copolymers (collaboration with Professor Martina Stenzel, UNSW, and Dr Andreas Wather, Leibniz Institutue for Interactive Materials).
  • DAAD fellowship, September - October 2015, to Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin.
  • Co-supervisor of 6 Ph.D. students at various Australian Universities.
  • 7 successful supervisions of Ph.D. students.
  • Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering, Monash University. 
  • M.Sc. In Physical Chemistry, University of Sydney.

Committees, Affiliations & Memberships

  • Expert on ISO TC 299 Preliminary Work Item on characterization of cellulose elementary fibril samples.
  • RACI Polymer Division committee member.
  • Chair and Organiser, annual Australasian Soft Matter Scattering Workshop.
  • Chair, Crystallography for Soft Matter Symposium, Institute for Macromolecular Chemistry, Prague, September, 2015.
  • Associate Professor Applied Physics RMIT University
  • Senior Adjunct positions at the University of Sydney (School of Molecular and Microbial Biosceinces) and Monash University (Departments of Chemical and Materials Engineering). 
  • Instrument advisory team for the SANS instrument Bilby, and the new low-q neutron  instrument Kookaburra at the Bragg Institute.
  • Membership of: Australian Institute of Physics, Australian Society for Biophysics, Australian and New  Zealand Society for Magnetic Resonance; Royal Australian Chemical Institute; Neutron Scattering Society of America, Australasian Colloid and Interface Society, Australasian Neutron Beam Users Group.
  • Reviewer for: Advanced Materials, Langmuir, Biomacromolecules, Journal of Biological Chemistry, Biophysical  Journal, European Biophysics Journal, Physica B, International Journal of Biological Macromolecules, Cryptogamie Algologie.



Selected publications

Cheng, C., Jiang, G., Garvey, C.J., Wang, Y., Simon, G.P., Liu, J.Z., and Li, D., “Ion transport in complex layered graphene-based membranes with tuneable interlayer spacing” Sci. Adv., 2, e1501272, DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1501272 (2016).
Li, Y., Lin, Y., Garvey, C. J., Birch, D., Corkery, R. W., Loughlin, P. C., Scheer, H., Willows, R.D., and  Chen, M., “Characterization of red-shifted phycobilisomes isolated from the chlorophyll f-containing cyanobacterium Halomicronema hongdechloris.”, BBA - Bioenergetics, 1857,  doi: 10.1016/j.bbabio.2015.10.009 (2016).
Kent, B., Hauß, T., Demé, B., Cristiglio, V., Darwish, T., Hunt, T., Bryant, G., and Garvey, C. J., “Direct Comparison of Disaccharide Interaction with Lipid Membranes at Reduced Hydrations.” Langmuir, 31, 9134, DOI 10.1021/acs.langmuir.5b02127 (2015).

Su, J., Garvey, C. J., Holt, S., Tabor, R. F., Winther-Jensen, B., Batchelor, W. and Garnier, G., “ Adsorption of cationic polyacrylamide at the cellulose-liquid interface: a neutron reflectometry study” , J. Colloid Interface Sci., 448, 88 (2015). doi:10.1016/j.jcis.2015.02.008.

Tabor, R. F., Zayeer, M. I., Dagastine, R. R., Grillo, I., and  Garvey, C. J.  “Phase Behavior, Small-Angle Neutron Scattering and Rheology of Ternary Nonionic Surfactant-Oil-Water Systems: A Comparison of Oils”,  Langmuir, 29, 3575 (2013).


Stadler A.M., Garvey C.J., Bocahut A., Sacquin-Mora S., Digel I. ,Schneider G.J., Natali, F., Artmann, G. M., and Zaccai, G., Thermal fluctuations of haemoglobin from different species: adaptation to temperature via conformational dynamics, J. R. Soc. Interface. 9, 2845-55 (2012).


Kent, B., Garvey, C.J., Lenn , T., Porcar, L., Haramus, V., and Bryant, G., "Measurement of glucose exclusion from the fully hydrated DOPE inverse hexagonal phase", Soft Matter 6, 1197 (2010).


Garvey, C.J., Simon, G.P., and Parker, I.H., "On the interpretation of paper x-ray diffraction powder patterns in terms of the nanostructure of cellulose I fibres", Macromol. Chem. Phys. 206, 1568 (2005).



Full publication list