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Department of Chemistry
St. John's University
8000 Utopia Parkway
Jamaica, NY 11439
William H. Nichols Distinguished Symposium,
Medal Award Presentation & Dinner
April 17, 2015
“MOLECULAR SURFACE SCIENCE AND ITS APPLICATIONS. NANOMATERIALS, THE SURFACE CHEMICAL BOND, BIOINTERFACES, AND CATALYSIS”
2015 Nichols Medalist
Professor Gabor A. Somorjai
Professor of Chemistry
University of California - Berkeley
Professor Paris Svoronos, 2015 Chair, ACS New York Section, CUNY-Queensborough Community College
1:35 p.m. Opening of the Distinguished Symposium
Professor Alison G. Hyslop, 2015 Chair-Elect, ACS New York Section, St. John's University
Professor Omar M. Yaghi,
University of California - Berkeley
Metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) represent an extensive class of porous crystals in which organic 'struts' are linked by metal oxide units to make open networks.
The flexibility with which their building units can be varied and their ultra-high porosity (up to 10,000 m2/g) have led to many applications in gas storage and
separations for clean energy. This presentation will focus on (1) how one can design porosity within MOFs to affect highly selective separations (carbon dioxide),
storage (hydrogen and methane) and catalysis, and (2) a new concept involving the design of heterogeneity within crystalline MOFs to
yield sequences that code for specific separations and chemical transformations.
Exploring the Interactions of Ions, Peptides, and Proteins with Lipid Membranes
Professor Paul Cremer
Pennsylvania State University
Biological membranes often contain negatively charged lipids such as phosphatidylserine, phosphatidylglycerol, phosphatidic acid, and gangliosides. The groups of these
lipids can strongly interact with positively charged aminoacids from peptides and (i.e. Arg and Lys residues), metal cation from the extracellular solution as well as
positively charged drug molecules. These negatively charged lipids are highly regulated within cells and are highly abundant in certain organelles while almost completely absent
in others. Moreover, their concentration within a particular leaflet of a given membrane is often tightly regulated. Despite the high degree of control of lipid composition within
cells, little is often known about the reason for it or even the specific nature of ligand-receptor binding interaction with such moieties. To remedy this, we have employed a
combination of spectroscopic techniques, microfluidic platforms, monolayer and planar supported bilayer architectures to explore the specific biophysical chemistries of these
interactions. This includes the development of a novel analytical tool that employs a pH sensitive fluorophore to probe subtle changes in the surface potential of lipid bilayers
upon ligand or ion binding. Both thermodynamic and molecular level details of these systems have been obtained. The results reveal that binding can be highly dependent on the
concentration of specific lipids within the membrane. Moreover, the presence or absence of various uncharged lipids can also greatly influence the binding properties. Interestingly,
specific interactions involving hydrogen bonding, charge transfer, and hydrophobic interactions often dominate over simple electrostatic effects.
3:15 p.m. Coffee Break
The Surface Chemical Bond: Explorations of Structure and Dynamics
Professor Steven L. Bernasek
The tools of molecular surface science developed over the past fifty years have enabled the examination of the nature of the surface chemical bond and its dynamic behavior
in unprecedented molecular detail. In my lecture I will discuss two examples of this sort of work. I will comment on the insights that have been gained in the basic understanding
of surface chemical processes using this approach, which has been pioneered by this year's recipient of the Nichols Award. This understanding provides important foundations for
the range of applications described in this symposium.
The first example focuses on the process of molecular self-assembly at well-characterized surfaces. The use of molecular beam scattering as well as scanning probe microscopy,
coupled with electron spectroscopic and microscopic methods, provides information about the formation and energetics of chiral and achiral organic monolayers and designed
nanostructured surfaces. Implications for the understanding of homochirality in biological systems, and applications in organic electronic device design will be mentioned.
The second example uses the tools of surface science, coupled with optical pulse shaping methods, to address the quantum control of surface chemical dynamics.
Carefully designed self-assembled monolayer samples along with surface sum frequency generation as a feedback signal, have been used to optimize selective bond manipulation
at the surface. Possible applications to heterogeneous catalysis and electronic device preparation will be presented.
The Genesis and Integration of heterogeneous, Homogeneous, and Enzyme Catalysis on the Nanoscale
Professor Gabor A. Somorjai, University of California - Berkeley
The synthesis of metal and bimetallic nanoparticles in the 1-10 nm range, and mesoporous high surface area oxides, were utilized as heterogeneous catalysts. The rates and chemical selectivity of multipath reactions were
dependent on the nanoparticle size and the oxide-metal nanoparticle interface composition. Instruments including laser spectroscopy (sum frequency generation vibrational spectroscopy) and synchrotron based x-ray
spectroscopies and scanning tunneling microscopy reveal the mobility and dynamic restructuring of adsorbed and reacting molecules and catalyst surfaces under reaction conditions. The formation of covalent bonds between
the adsorbed molecules and the diverse structures of the catalyst surfaces are one important ingredient of catalytic selectivity. The charge transfer of oxide-metal interfaces to the reacting molecules (acid-base catalysis)
is the other important property of catalytic reactivity. Metal nanoparticles at 1 nm size (40 atoms) and below behave as single metal-ion transition metal homogeneous catalysts. Studies of adsorbing enzyme catalysts on oxide
surfaces explore how their rates and chemical selectivities are altered in progress.
William H. Nichols Medal Award Dinner
Professor Kenneth Eisenthal of Columbia University
will introduce the 2015 Medalist
Reservations for the 2015 William H. Nichols Distinguished Symposium & Medal Award Banquet
in honor of Professor Gabor A. Somorjai, University of California - Berkeley
may be made by April 7, 2015 using this
You can pay for your tickets using the buttons below (please make sure to indicated menu selection)
Message from 2018 Chair
Dr. Joseph M. Serafin
2018 Board Meeting Dates
Archive of Back Issues
Reminder - Please Pay Your New York
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The Employment and Professional Relations Committee maintains a roster of candidates who are ACS members seeking a position in the New York metropolitan area.
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Then we need to hear from you!
The New York Section of the ACS is looking to increase and
update its Speakers Bureau database of interested local area
speakers who are available for Section-wide seminars and
symposia. If you have an area of research or interest that
would provide an interesting talk appropriate for our Section
members, and would like to be included in our Speakers Bureau,
then please contact the New
York Section Office (516-883-7510, Email) with the following information
that will be posted on the Section's website: your name,
affiliation, a title, and 5-6 words briefly summarizing your
area of specialty. We look forward to hearing from you about
topics that you wish to share with our other members!
NY Section ACS Speakers Bureau