Parkin's group have pioneered the development of new routes to inorganic materials and the discovery of new phases and polymorphs. His work is typified by innovative synthesis, detailed characterization, functional testing including benchmarking, and in some cases commercialization.
His work has involved developing research areas that did not exist previously: including light activated antimicrobial polymers; self-cleaning window glass; discriminating gas sensors based on zeolites; thermochromic coatings by Chemical Vapour Deposition (CVD) and Photoaccustic based ultrasound fibers.
His work contributed to commercial self- cleaning glass. Parkin heads the gas sensor lab at UCL that has produced two start-up companies (Capture Sensors and Aeroqual).
Capture sensors was sold to City Technology. Aeroqual has produced 6000 hand held ozone sensors and has 25 staff; the UCL lab produced sensor types that are now used in 10% of all new cars.
His work on antimicrobial coatings was featured in a display at the Science Museum (Aug-Dec 2014) and his thermochromic work has been featured in over 200 articles in the media (press, magazines, TV).
His team has developed a new linking strategy that has enabled a new type of miniaturized ultrasound probe based on the photo-acoustic effect that is in clinical trails and a new superhydrophobic coating that is resistant to abrasion.