Dr Heather Yates

School of Science, Engineering & Environment

Photo of Dr Heather Yates

Current positions



I completed my PhD (Deposition of II-VI semiconductor thin films) at UMIST (1989) where I was one of the first to achieve room temperature blue luminescence of ZnSe1-y Sy based devices. Since then I have focussed on deposition of thin coatings for a wide range of applications all based on Chemical Vapour Deposition (CVD). These have included the first reported inverse opal systems based on InP and GaP, self-clean, conductive and anti-microbial surfaces. In 1995 I moved to the University of Salford initially as a researcher, becoming a lecturer in 2009 and then appointed as a Reader in 2017.

Over the years I have actively participated and obtained external grant funding, from particularly EU programs to research topics including photonic materials, energy related materials (solar cells, energy save glazing) and infection control coatings.

Areas of Research

My research is based on atmospheric pressure thin film deposition via Chemical Vapour Deposition. The coaters employ thermal, flame and plasma technologies, and multiple precursor delivery technologies including flash evaporation and aerosol. These are all capable of scale-up and integration into industrial in-line processes. They are used for producing tailored thin film coatings on a range of materials with added value functional properties. Materials such as glass, metal and depending on the exact process low melting point plastics can be coated.

CVD technology can be adapted to meet a range of nanostructured coating and surface structures that include abrasion resistant, biocidal, conductive, anti-reflection, thermochromic and hydrophobic materials. There are wide ranging uses of these films from solar cells, energy save window glazing to anti-microbial surfaces.

Areas of Supervision

Please see https://hub.salford.ac.uk/sirc-materials-and-physics/
for my area of research. If this area is of interest and links with your proposed postgraduate research please get in touch.


I teach a wide range of topics from mechanics for Foundation UG to specialised modules on nanotechnology and thin films for final year BSc and MPhys students. In addition, I am responsible for level 4 and 5 laboratory classes.

Qualifications and Recognitions

  • PhD

    1985 - 1988
  • BSc

    1982 - 1985