Work in Professor Arnold's research group is directed toward the synthesis and study of new and unusual molecular inorganic and organometallic compounds of the d- and p- block, and lanthanide elements. The emphasis is on preparing compounds that exhibit novel reactivity and/or catalytic behavior (both homogeneously and heterogeneously). In addition to the dry-box and Schlenk techniques used to prepare and manipulate compounds, we exploit a variety of characterization methods, including multinuclear NMR, X-ray crystallography, ESR and cyclic voltammetry. In the solid-state, we employ TGA/DTA, RBS, SEM and powder diffraction to determine the composition and purity of our materials. Research is concentrated in two main areas spanning organometallic and coordination chemistry, catalysis, and the design of new materials:, , Organometallic Chemistry and Catalysis,
The focus here is on the design and synthesis of new ligands that are capable of supporting novel structural features and reactivity. Currently, we are investigating ligand architectures based on triazacyclononane, amidine, and diamide frameworks. An important aspect of this work is its application to catalysis. Our recent efforts have focused on polymerization of a-olefins and lactide, and we are especially interested in developing new complexes for use in enantioselective synthesis.
Our recent work has explored two areas of materials chemistry. New routes to important solid-state semiconductorts, such as GaN and ZnSe, have been developed using single-source precursor chemistry. We are especially interested in the development of new ion conducting systems and their application as solid electrolytes for lithium batteries. Drawing inspiration from biological systems, our work aims to produce solid polymer systems that are able to transport lithium ions with high efficiency.
In the News
The Berkeley Center for Green Chemistry (BCGC) has been awarded a $3.4 million training grant by the National Science Foundation. The grant will train five to six Ph.D. students annually for five years in the principles of green chemistry and the design of clean energy technologies.
The Berkeley Center for Green Chemistry hosts its first national conference March 24, where experts from a broad range of disciplines will discuss the center’s unique, multidisciplinary approach to creating more sustainable and safer chemicals.