Thomas Zinn


Thomas is a Senior Support Scientist at I22 and DL-SAXS.

Tel: +44 (0) 12353 94187

Techniques and Disciplines

Research Interests

  • small- and wide-angle scattering (SAXS/WAXS and SANS)
  • x-ray photon correlation spectroscopy (XPCS)
  • soft-matter (colloids, polymers, proteins, etc.)
  • particle dynamics (e.g. active matter,)

Most recent publications

"Dynamics of magnetic Janus colloids studied by ultra small-angle X-ray photon correlation spectroscopy" T. Zinn, et al.: Soft Matter, 2022, Advance Article

"Emergent dynamics of light-induced active colloids probed by XPCS" T. Zinn, et al.: New Journal of Physics 24 (9), 093007, 2022

"The genetic basis of structural colour variation in mimetic Heliconius butterflies" M.N. Brien, et al.: Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B 377 (1855), 20200505, 2022

"Energy Landscape of the Sugar Conformation Controls the Sol-to-Gel Transition in Self-Assembled Bola Glycolipid Hydrogels" A. Poirier, et al.: Chemistry of Materials 34 (12), 5546-5557, 2022

"Polished diamond X-ray lenses" R. Celestre, et al.: Journal of Synchrotron Radiation 29 (3), 629-643, 2022

"Synthesis of Thermoresponsive Diblock Copolymer Nano-Objects via RAFT Aqueous Emulsion Polymerization of Hydroxybutyl Methacrylate" S.J. Hunter, et al.: Macromolecules 55 (8), 3051-3062, 2022

"Performance of the time-resolved ultra-small-angle X-ray scattering beamline with the Extremely Brilliant Source" T. Narayanan, et al.: Journal of applied crystallography 55 (1), 98-111, 2022




  • 02/2022 – current Senior Beamline Support Scientist at beamline I22; Life Science, Diamond Light Source Ltd., Didcot, United Kingdom
  • 02/2019 – 02/2022 Beamline Scientist at beamline ID02; Complex Systems and Biomedical Sciences Group (CBS), ESRF - The European Synchrotron, Grenoble, France
  • 02/2017 - 01/2019 Junior scientist at ID02; Complex Systems and Biomedical Sciences Group (CBS), ESRF - The European Synchrotron, Grenoble, France
  • 10/2013 - 01/2017 Postdoctoral research fellow; Department of Chemistry, University of Oslo, Norway

Area of Specialisation

Soft condensed matter 

  • structural characterization of proteins, peptides, polymers, colloids, surfactants, etc.
  • molecular transport (micellar exchange kinetics, active matter)
  • thermodynamics, physical chemistry, theoretical physics


  • small-angle scattering (X-ray, neutron, light),
  • photon correlation spectroscopy (dynamic light scattering, x-ray photon correlation spectroscopy),
  • rheology,
  • differential scanning calorimetry


"Emergent dynamics of light-induced active colloids probed by XPCS" T. Zinn, T. Narayanan, S.N. Kottapalli, J. Sachs, T. Sottmann, P. Fischer: New Journal of Physics 24 (9), 093007, 2022

"Phoretic dynamics of colloids in a phase separating critical liquid mixture" T. Zinn, L. Sharpnack, T. Narayanan: Physical Review Research 2 (3), 033177, 2020

"Ultra-small-angle X-ray photon correlation spectroscopy using the Eiger detector" T. Zinn, A. Homs, L. Sharpnack, G. Tinti, E. Fröjdh, P.A. Douissard, M. Kocsis, J. Möller, Y. Chushkin, T. Narayanan: Journal of Synchrotron Radiation 25 (6), 1753-1759, 2018

"Self-Assembly of mixtures of telechelic and monofunctional amphiphilic polymers in water: from clusters to flowerlike micelles" T. Zinn, L. Willner, K.D. Knudsen, R. Lund: Macromolecules 50 (18), 7321-7332, 2017

"Telechelic polymer hydrogels: Relation between the microscopic dynamics and macroscopic viscoelastic response" T. Zinn, L. Willner, R. Lund: ACS Macro Letters 5 (12), 1353-1356, 2016

"Molecular exchange kinetics of micelles: corona chain length dependence" T. Zinn, L. Willner, V. Pipich, D. Richter, R. Lund: ACS Macro Letters 5 (7), 884-888, 2016

"Effect of core crystallization and conformational entropy on the molecular exchange kinetics of polymeric micelles" T. Zinn, L. Willner, V. Pipich, D. Richter, R. Lund: ACS Macro Letters 4 (6), 651-655, 2015

"Nanoscopic confinement through self-assembly: crystallization within micellar cores exhibits simple Gibbs-Thomson behavior" T. Zinn, L. Willner, R. Lund: Physical review letters 113 (23), 238305, 2014

“Surfactant or block copolymer micelles? Structural properties of a series of well-defined n-alkyl–PEO micelles in water studied by SANS” T. Zinn, L. Willner, R. Lund, V. Pipich, M.S. Appavou, D. Richter: Soft matter 10 (28), 5212-5220, 2014

“Equilibrium exchange kinetics in n-alkyl–PEO polymeric micelles: single exponential relaxation and chain length dependence” T. Zinn, L. Willner, R. Lund, V. Pipich, D. Richter: Soft Matter 8 (3), 623-62690, 2012

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