Dr Karl discusses the VFD
Prime minister Malcolm Turnbull
Greg Weiss and Colin Ralston
IG Nobel prize ceremony
Professor Colin Raston and the VFD


Welcome to the Raston Lab website. Here you will find everything from personal information on Colin and his team, to current areas of research, publications, patents and information on how to get involved.


The Raston Lab is situated in South Australia at Flinders University. We specialize in thin film flow chemistry delivering new methodology in both synthetic flow chemistry and materials chemistry. Visitors from both an academic and industrial background are welcome to get in touch.

News, videos and featured articles

Raston Lab awarded at ISHHC18

Photographed is Lab member Scott Pye receiving a (shared) 2nd prize, for best poster at the recent ISHHC18 (International Symposioim on Relations between Homogenous and Heterogenous Catalysis, 2018).

The presented work was on continuous flow olefin metathesis, a collaboration between the Raston Lab and Justin Chalker.

Thanks to RACI, RSC and Springer for hosting the awards.

ChemComm Journal Inside Front Cover

Recent work from the group, in assembling C60 fullerenes into cones! This work was featured in the inside front cover of the RSC journal Chemical Communications.

Too see the cover and read the article, follow this link:

Recent Tweets

Recent Publications

Featured Synthetic Methodology
J.M Phillips et. al., Chemoselective and Continuous Flow Hydrogenation in Thin Films Using a Palladium Nanoparticle Catalyst Embedded in Cellulose Paper. ACS App. Bio Mat. 2019, 2, 1, 488-494
S.J Pye, S.J Dalgarno, J.M Chalker & C.L raston, Organic oxidations promoted in vortex driven thin films under continuous flow. Green Chemistry, 2018, 20, 118 - 124
J. Britton et al, Ten-Minute Protein Purification and Surface Tethering for Continuous-Flow Biocatalysis, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed., 2017, 56, 9, 2296 - 2301.
L.A Ho, C. Raston & K. Stubbs. Transition-Metal-Free Cross-Coupling Reactions in Dynamic Thin Films To Access Pyrimidine and Quinoxaline Analogues. Eur. J. Org. Chem. 2016, 36, 5957-5963.


Featured Materials Methodology


T.M.D Alharbi et. al. Shear stress mediated scrolling of graphene oxide, Carbon, 2018, DOI:

K. Vimalanathan et al, Fluid dynamic lateral slicing of high tensile strength carbon nanotubesSci. Reports, 2016, 6, Article number 22865.

K. E. Moore et al, Wool deconstruction using a benign eutectic melt, RSC Adv., 2016, 6, 20095-20101. 

M. Haniff Wahid et al, Microencapsulation of bacterial strains in graphene oxide nano-sheets using vortex fluidics, RSC Adv., 2015,5, 37424-37430.

Featured Application Methodology
J. Britton et. al. Vortex Fluidic Chemical Transformations, Chem. Euro. J., 2017, Issue 5, DOI:10.1002/chem.201700888
X. Luo et al, Vortex fluidic device-intensified aqueous two phase extraction of C-phycocyanin from spirulina maxima. ACS Sustainable Chem. Eng. 2016, 4(7) 3905-3911.
J. Britton et al, Harnessing Thin-Film Continuous-Flow Assembly Lines. Chem. Eur. J, 2016. 31. 10773–10776. 
M. Haniff Wahid et al, Aqueous based synthesis of antimicrobial-decorated graphene, J. Colloid Interf. Sci., 2015, 443, 88-96.

Chemical Society Reviews Journal Cover


The recent review by J. Britton and C. Raston, "Multi-step Continuous-flow Synthesis" is featured on the back cover in Chem. Soc. Rev. issue 5, 2017.

To see the cover and read the paper, follow this link:

BBC News story "Machine that 'unboils' eggs may help fight cancer"


A machine that can "unboil" protein-rich egg whites, winning an Ig Nobel Prize in 2015, may also have important medical applications, its inventor says...

ABC catalyst special on the VFD, "UNBOILING AN EGG!"


Unboiling an egg’ technology leads to new discoveries in renewable energy. You can’t unboil an egg, right? Wrong! Scientists from Flinders University in SA won an Ig Nobel Prize for successfully unboiling an egg. The technology....

Increasing anti-cancer activity with thin film flow chemistry!


With ovarian cancer, we found that this technology can increase the loading of second generation anti-cancer carboplatin drugs into delivery vehicles from 17 per cent to 75 per cent. This not only would have a direct benefit of reducing the negative side-effects which affect patient health, but of being able to use less of the drug.

An Assembly Line Approach to the Synthesis of local anethetic Lidocaine in Flow!


The total synthesis of Lidocaine was accamplished using new synthetic methodology in flow. An Assembly line approach to this molecule inspired new flow methodology. Lidocaine, amides, ureas and modified amino acids were also synthesised in flow with yields enhanced compared to batch.

Machine that 'uncooks eggs' used to improve cancer treatment


A machine invented by an Australian scientist that can "unboil an egg" by unfolding the proteins in egg whites back to their natural state has been hailed as a potential game-changer for the targeted delivery of chemotherapy drugs for cancer treatment.

Chemical Communications interview with Colin


Chem Comm probe what it is that makes Colin tick and what he plans to be doing when he is 100 years old.

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Site Editor: Matt Jellicoe,