The goal of this project is to synthesize, characterize, and study the properties of new inorganic compounds that have novel photochemical, electronic, or biomimetic applications.
Tom Schmedake (CHEM) and Daniel Rabinovich (CHEM)
The Rabinovich laboratory has been investigating the syntheses and molecular structures of novel N-heterocyclic thione (NHT) and selone (NHSe) ligands derived from caffeine. These are attractive ligands for various applications in coordination chemistry since they are air-stable, water-soluble, and display a high affinity for soft metal ions. For example, a systematic study of the coordination chemistry of these soft donor ligands towards mercury(II), copper(I) and gold(I) complexes have resulted in the isolation of several new complexes with interesting structures. NanoSURE participants will optimize the syntheses of some of these compounds and attempt to obtain single crystals amenable to study by X-ray crystallography. In addition, a combination of NMR spectroscopy and electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS) to evaluate the selenophilicity of copper (i.e., its preferential affinity for selenium over sulfur).
Undergraduate students in the Schmedake lab have synthesized a variety of hexacoordinate silicon-based complexes for electronic applications, including OLEDs and OPVs. We focus on complexes that contain pincer ligands such as the 2,6-(bis-benzamidazol-2-yl)pyridine, bzimpy ligand (Figure 1). These ligands provide extra stability for the hexacoordinate silicon complexes. This summer REU students will synthesize new hexacoordinate silicon complexes for OLED lighting applications.
REU Students’ Role
Students will contribute to this project by synthesizing new inorganic compounds and materials in either the Schmedake or Rabinovich lab. Following synthesis, purification, and characterization, students may initiate biological testing of potentially bio-active targets (Rabinovich group) or initiate OLED device testing (Schmedake group). Students will be trained in lab protocols and safety procedures by the research mentors.