Jenkins--NHCs ligands two ways: For oxidation catalysis and Au nanoparticles

Thursday, September 29, 2022

Dr. David Jenkins

The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Dr. David M. Jenkins
Ziegler Professor
Department of Chemistry
The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

NHCs ligands two ways: For oxidation catalysis and Au nanoparticles
Thursday, September 29th 2022 at 3:30 PM in Hand 1144

Abstract:  N-heterocyclic carbenes (NHCs) have disrupted organometallic chemistry since their isolation in the 1990s.  Their combination of impressive strong -donor strength plus the ability to tune the sterics near a metal center has led them to replace ligands such as phosphines.  Our research group exploits these properties through the synthesis of novel NHCs for two distinct applications.  In the first vignette, we focus our efforts to synthesize a library of macrocyclic tetra-NHCs that are shaped like porphyrins for oxidation catalysis.  In particular, we are developing the catalytic synthesis of aziridines in a C2 + N1 addition reaction.  In the second application, we are harnessing their strong bonds to gold form self-assembled monolayers (SAMs).  SAMs on gold have myriad potential applications in bio-medicine, but to be effective the organic layer must remain stable under physiological conditions.  Most current technology, which is based on thiols, is unsuitable for long term usage, whereas NHC SAMs show excellent stability.

Bio: Dr. Jenkins completed his B.A. in Chemistry from Cornell University in 2000, where he conducted research with Prof. Héctor Abruña on the synthesis and electrochemistry of phenanthroline-based copper complexes. He received his Ph.D. from the California Institute of Technology in 2005, under the direction of Prof. Jonas Peters, for his study of low-spin pseudo-tetrahedral cobalt(II) complexes. While at Caltech, Dr. Jenkins synthesized the first cobalt-imide complex. Dr. Jenkins then joined the laboratory of Prof. Jeffrey Long as a Miller Institute for Basic Research postdoctoral fellow at the University of California, Berkeley.  Dr. Jenkins joined the faculty of the University of Tennessee in 2008 and was promoted to Ziegler Professor of chemistry in 2020.  His research at UT focuses on the design of novel azole ligands for a wide variety of inorganic synthetic projects ranging from porous materials, to nanoparticles, to homogenous catalysis.  He has won numerous awards including the UT Chancellor's and Dean's awards for research, an NSF CAREER award, and young investigator journal awards from Chemical Communications and Thieme.  He is also currently the Associate Head of chemistry for Undergraduate Education.

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