Chemical Physics and Physical Chemistry

Alumni Reception at APS Meeting in Boston

Tue, 2019-03-05 18:00 - 20:00

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

6:00 – 8:00 PM


The Westin Boston Waterfront

Room: Revere

425 Summer Street

Boston, MA 02210



Please RSVP to

Attached Document: 

Physical Chemistry Seminar: Dr. Yihan Shao, University of Oklahoma

Thu, 2019-02-28 13:00 - 14:00

Dr. Yihan Shao

Carol Lynch Lecture Hall Chemistry Complex
Attached Document: 

"Modeling Substituent and Macromolecular Effects on the Molecular Electronic Structure"


NOBCChE Lecture: Levi Thompson (Delaware)

Fri, 2019-01-18 16:00

Prof. Levi T. Thompson

University of Delaware

Lynch Lecture Hall

Development of Non-Aqueous Redox Flow Batteries for Grid-Scale Energy Storage


Physical Chemistry Seminar, Dr Shelley Claridge, Purdue

Thu, 2019-01-24 13:00 - 14:00

Dr. Shelley Claridge



Standing, Lying, and Sitting: Transforming the Cell Membrane

to Interface with Synthetic Nanomaterials

Shelley A. Claridge1,2

1Department of Chemistry, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana

2Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana


A surprisingly broad array of problems in modern materials chemistry relate to creating interfaces with two distinct, well-structured chemical environments at near-molecular scales. For instance, positioning nm-wide metal and semiconductor features with a pitch of 5-7 nm in a nonconductive matrix represents a central requirement for next-generation nanoelectronic devices.  Controlling interfacial chemical structure at scales from 5-10 nm is difficult using conventional lithographic patterning techniques. At the same time, a 6-nm pattern forms the cross-section of biological cell membranes, with distinct chemical environments created by a bilayer of phospholipids. We find powerful functions of phospholipid chemistry are preserved when the molecules are instead assembled in striped phases, in which the alkyl tails lie flat on a surface and the headgroups form 1-nm-wide stripes with a pitch of ~6 nm. We will discuss the relationship between structure and function at these interfaces, and useful material properties that emerge from the unusual surface chemistry; these include assembly of inorganic nanocrystals and crystallization of functional organic molecules.



Shelley Claridge received undergraduate degrees in mathematics and biochemistry from Texas A&M University, and subsequently worked as a software engineer for six years prior to completing a Ph.D. at UC Berkeley with Paul Alivisatos and Jean Fréchet. After a postdoctoral fellowship with Paul Weiss at UCLA, she joined the faculty at Purdue University in 2013. Her research at Purdue has been recognized with Young Investigator awards from NSF, DARPA, 3M, and DuPont (one of 8 globally), and received emerging investigator recognitions from Journal of the American Chemical Society, Chemical Communications, Analytical Methods, and Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry.



Carol Lynch Lecture Hall

Chemisty Compplex

Host: Fakharri / Murray



Physical Chemistry Seminar, Dr. Matthias Waegele, Boston College

Thu, 2019-04-18 13:00 - 14:00

Dr. Matthias Waegele


Carol Lynch Lecture Hall

Chemistry Complex

"Elucidating the Molecular Origins of the Product Selectivity of Electrocatalytic Reactions"

Physical Chemistry Semianr: Dr. Sara Mason, University of Iowa

Thu, 2019-03-14 13:00 - 14:00

Dr. Sara Mason

Lynch Lecture Hall Chemistry Complex

"Designed Metal Release from Complex Metal Oxides"



Physical Chemistry Seminar, Dr. Sanat Kumar, Columbia University

Thu, 2018-10-11 13:00 - 14:00

Dr. Sanat Kumar

"Polymer-Grafted Nanoparticle Membranes with Controllable Free-Volume"


-Polymer based membranes play a key role in several industrially important gas separation technologies, e.g., removing CO2 from natural gas, with enormous economic and environmental impact. Baker advocates the development of novel membrane architectures since current, pure polymer membranes only offer limited systematic pathways for improvement. Here, we develop a novel hybrid membrane construct comprised entirely of nanoparticles grafted with polymers. These membranes are shown to have broadly tunable separation performance through variations in graft density and chain length. Computer simulations show that the optimal NP packing forces the grafted polymer layer to distort, yielding regions of measurably lower polymer density. Multiple experimental probes confirm that these materials have the predicted increase in “polymer free volume”, which explains their improved separation performance. These polymer-grafted NP materials thus represent a new template for rationally designing membranes with desirable separation abilities, coupled with improved aging characteristics in the glassy state and enhanced mechanical behavior.
Carol Lynch Lecture Hall Chemistry Complex

Host: Dr. Fakhraai




Physical Chemistry Seminar, Dr. Paul Wennberg, Caltech

Thu, 2019-02-07 13:00 - 14:00
Dr. Paul Wennberge

Carol Lynch Lecture Hall

Chemistry Complex

Autoxidation of Organic Compounds in the Atmosphere

Joseph S. Francisco

First Name: 
Joseph S.
Last Name: 
Official Title: 
President’s Distinguished Professor
Additional Titles: 
Professor of Chemistry
Professor of Earth & Environmental Sciences
Contact Information

B.S.: Chemistry, University of Texas at Austin, 1977


Ph.D.: Chemical Physics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1983.


Research Fellow: University of Cambridge, 1983-1985


Provost Postdoctoral Fellow: Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1985-1986

Research Interests: 

Research in our laboratory focuses on basic studies in spectroscopy, kinetics and photochemistry of novel transient species in the gas phase, in aerosol and at the ice-quasi liquid layer. These species play an important role in atmospheric processes. Yet questions dealing with how structures correlate to reactivity and photochemical mechanisms have not been addressed for these systems. These problems are addressed by research efforts in our laboratory. Specific research areas of interest are: 1) Spectroscopic determinations of electronic and vibrational transitions in free radicals; 2) Kinetics of individual gas-phase reaction steps involving free radicals in complex reaction mechanisms involved in the gas phase and at interfaces; 3) Characteristics of primary photo chemical processes that free radicals can undergo in the gas phase and at interfaces; 4) Atmospheric chemistry and dynamics at the air/water interface chemistry; and 5) Atmospheric chemistry and dynamics at the ice-quasi liquid layer.



Our goal is to use state-of-the-art molecular orbital methods to predict properties that can be used as a guide in the experimental search. We aim to predict spectroscopic properties for these novel species in the gas phase and at the air/water interface, that would facilitate their full experimental characterization. 

Selected Publications: 

M. Kumar, and J.S. Francisco, Mechanistic Insight into Ion-Pair Particle Formation from Methanesulfonic Acid-Amines Chemistry at the Air-Water Interface,  Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA., 114, 12401-12406 (2017).


L. Artiglia, J. Edebeli,  F. Orlando, S. Chen, P. C. Arroyo, A. Gilgen, T. Bartels-Rausch, A. Kleibert, M. Vazdar, M. A. Garegnano, J.S. Francisco,  P.B. Shepson, I. Gladich, and M. Ammann, A Surface-Stabilized Ozonide Triggers Bromide Oxidation at the Aqueous Solution-Vapor Interface, Nature Communications8, 700 (2017).


C.Q. Zhu, J. Zhong, M. Kumar, J.S. Francisco, X.C. Zeng, New Mechanistic Pathways for Creigee-Water Chemistry at the Air/Water Interface,  J. Am. Chem. Soc., 138, 11164-11169 (2016).


R. Hoehn, M.A. Carignano, S. Kais,  J.S. Francisco, and  I. Gladich, Hydrogen Bonding and Orientation Effects on the Accommodation of Methylamine at the Air-Water Interface, J. Chem. Phys.144, 214701 (2016).


M. Kumar, A. Sinha, and J. S. Francisco, Role of Double Hydrogen Atom Transfer Reactions in Atmospheric Chemistry, Acc. Chem. Res., 49, 877- 833 (2016).


M. Kumar and J.S. Francisco, Red-Light Induced Decomposition of Organic Peroxy Radical: A New Source of the HO2Radical, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed.54, 15711-15714 (2015).


J.M. Anglada, M. Martins-Costa, M.F. Ruiz-Lopez, J.S. Francisco, Spectroscopic Signatures of Ozone at the Air/Water Interface and Photochemistry Implications, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA., 111, 11618-11623 (2014).

Department of Chemistry

231 S. 34 Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6323

215.898.8317 voice | 215.573.2112 fax |

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