Our research group addresses fundamental questions in catalysis, surface science, and molecular assembly. Our team includes chemists and physicists from a variety of backgrounds with a common interest in advancing grand challenges in science and technology through rational design and detailed study of molecular, metal-organic, and inorganic systems at solid surfaces. These are interdisciplinary problems that we approach with a range of experimental techniques and a variety of collaborations with experts around the world.
There are two major research projects in our labs:
Metal-ligand Single-atom Catalysts at Surfaces. This project involves the synthesis of metal-organic complexes at surfaces to stabilize single transition metal atoms as precisely defined catalyst sites. This addresses important questions in improving selectivity in heterogeneous catalysis. We study these systems using a variety of analytical tools, including flow and batch reactor studies, characterization under ambient conditions, and detailed examination under ultra-high vacuum conditions.
Supramolecular Self-assembly at Surfaces. This project examines the complex interplay of non-covalent interactions between molecules at a surface, which impacts the formation of complex molecular architectures within molecular layers and films. The design of the molecular building blocks can be tuned to alter large-scale structure and functional properties of the molecular layers.
Miao presented his dissertation to his committee on July 29, 2019 and successfully defended his work. His presentation, "Study of Metal-Ligand Complexation at Metal and Metal-Oxide Surfaces by Vibrational Spectroscopy," was outstanding! Congratulations, Miao!
In August, Toby, Eman, David, and Steve traveled to the Diamond Light Source in the United Kingdom to conduct X-ray Standing Wave Spectroscopy experiments on Vanadium-ligand complexes on surfaces. The goal of the experiment was to measure the height change of the V atoms relative to the Au surface upon adsorption of oxygen.
Henry was selected as the Materials Chemistry speaker for the first ever IU Chemistry end of year symposium and party on Friday, December 13, 2019. Henry was one of six graduate student speakers that presented their work to a full auditorium of students and faculty. Henry spoke on "Self-Assembly at Interfaces: Tuning Supramolecular Interactions to…
Henry presented his defense seminar and exam by Zoom video conferencing (a first for our group) on May 7, 2020. Henry gave a talk about "Self-assembly at Solution/Solid Interfaces: Fundamental Assembly Mechanisms and Novel Molecular Design to Promote Structure."