Summer Undergraduate Research Mentored Experience

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Dr. Dino Villagran

Department of Chemistry

Coordinatively unsaturated bimetallic units

Preferred major field of study or minimum required skills

Synthetic inorganic chemistry, glove box techniques, electrochemistry. Understanding of electronic and molecular structure.

Scholarly significance/intellectual merit

My research group targets problems of energy, environmental chemistry, and magnetism primarily focusing on physical measurements and computational and theoretical studies. We utilize advanced synthetic techniques to prepare novel inorganic compounds based on transition metals that target the activation of small molecules. We build synthetic PCET models, bimetallic units with open coordination sites, and try to manipulate the redox chemistry of metal center through non-innocent metaloligands.

Research question(s)

  1. We first need to choose the identity of the metal center appropriately according to the desired characteristics of bimetallic compounds.
  2. Can we synthesize the appropriate bulky bidentate organic ligand that will force the bimetallic to be coordinatively unsaturated
  3. Can we utilize these compounds to activate small molecules and mechanistically understand the process?

Methods/techniques/instruments to be learned/utilized

This research project will provide training of air-sensitive synthesis using Schlenk line and glove box techniques. Once the compounds are synthesized, characterization techniques, NMR, x-ray crystallography, mass-spectrometry will be utilized to ascertain the nature of the novel compounds. we will utilize electrochemical and spectroscopy methods (UV-vis, EPR) to study electronic structure.

Program Coordinator

Joseph Ramos - SURME Program Coordinator

Joseph "Joe" Ramos

Campus Office of Undergraduate Research Initiatives

(915) 747-6210