The Department of Chemistry at the University of Peradeniya is centrally located on the campus and accommodates over 550 undergraduate and more than 25 postgraduate students. The department has 21 PhDs. The first batch of Chemistry Special students graduated in 1966. The Peradeniya Chemistry Special alumni, today, stands at over 800 scattered all over the world.
In 1960 Prof. Sultanbawa was entrusted with the development of the Dept. of Chemistry at the new Science Faculty in Peradeniya. From the very beginning, he had a vision for the new Department of Chemistry at Peradeniya – and wanted to see it as a top research facility in SL. In fulfillment of this, today nearly 50 years later, the Chemistry Department can boast of NMR, X-ray crystallography, FTIR, GC-MS and HPLC facilities. Soon research money obtained from the NRC will add an Atomic Absorption Spectrometer and Eco Chimi Autolab Electrochemical Instrument and an LCMS to strengthen our research capabilities.
The Department of Chemistry at Peradeniya, today, is a hive of activity as far as research is concerned. Research is being conducted in physical, inorganic, analytical as well as organic chemistry. Staff members are involved in research activities inspite of the demands of the new Course Unit System introduced into the curriculum, and teaching of postgraduate courses at the Postgraduate Institute of Science.
We are not only interested in pursuing high goals in the area of research but also in imparting knowledge of the highest standing to our students. We constantly review our courses and modify or introduce the current areas of the time. Some of our new courses are Theories of liquids and solids, Environmental chemistry and Topics in solid state chemistry to name a few.
The staff of the Chemistry Department have shown that they are always willing to take on new challenges. We are now undergoing self evaluation of the department in order to enhance the quality of our teaching in undergraduate and postgraduate programmes. This will ensure that our department will probably be one of the best or The Best Chemistry Teaching Facility in the country.