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  Partner: UNT Libraries
 Department: Department of Chemistry
 Decade: 2010-2019
 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
Accuracy and Efficiency in Computational Chemistry: The Correlation Consistent Composite Approach
One of the central concerns of computational chemistry is that of efficiency (i.e. the development of methodologies which will yield increased accuracy of prediction without requiring additional computational resources – RAM, disk space, computing time). Though the equations of quantum mechanics are known, the solutions to these equations often require a great deal of computing power. This dissertation primarily concerns the theme of improved computational efficiency (i.e. the achievement of greater accuracy with reduced computational cost). Improvements in the efficiency of computational chemistry are explored first in terms of the correlation consistent composite approach (ccCA). The ccCA methodology was modified and this enhanced ccCA methodology was tested against the diverse G3/05 set of 454 energetic properties. As computational efficiency improves, molecules of increasing size may be studied and this dissertation explored the issues (differential correlation and size extensivity effects) associated with obtaining chemically accurate (within 1 kcal mol-1) enthalpies of formation for hydrocarbon molecules of escalating size. Two applied projects are also described; these projects concerned the theoretical prediction of a novel rare gas compound, FKrOH, and the mechanism of human glutathione synthetase’s (hGS) negative cooperativity. The final work examined the prospect for the parameterization of the modified embedded atom method (MEAM) potential using first principles calculations of dimer and trimer energies of nickel and carbon systems. This method of parameterization holds promise for increasing the accuracy of simulations for bulk properties within the field of materials science.
Advancements in Instrumentation for Fourier Transform Microwave Spectroscopy
The efforts of my research have led to the successful construction of several instruments that have helped expand the field of microwave spectroscopy. The classic Balle-Flygare spectrometer has been modified to include two different sets of antenna to operate in the frequency ranges 6-18 GHz and 18-26 GHz, allowing it to function for a large range without having to break vacuum. This modified FTMW instrument houses two low noise amplifiers in the vacuum chamber to allow for the LNAs to be as close to the antenna as physically possible, improving sensitivity. A new innovative Balle-Flygare type spectrometer, the efficient low frequency FTMW, was conceived and built to operate at frequencies as low as 500 MHz through the use of highly curved mirrors. This is new for FTMW techniques that normally operate at 4 GHz or higher with only a few exceptions around 2 GHz. The chirped pulse FTMW spectrometer uses horn antennas to observe spectra that span 2 GHz versus the standard 1 MHz of a cavity technique. This instrument decreases the amount of time to obtain a large spectral region of relative correct intensity molecular transitions. A Nd:YAG laser ablation apparatus was attached to the classic Balle-Flygare and chirped pulse FTMW spectrometers. This allowed the study of heavy metal containing compounds. The instruments I constructed and the techniques I used have allowed the discovery of further insights into molecular chemistry. I have seen the effects of fluorinating an alkyl halide by determining the geometry of the carbon backbone of trans-1-iodoperfluoropropane and observing a ΔJ = 3 forbidden transition caused by a strong quadrupole coupling constant on this heavy molecule. The quadrupole coupling tensors of butyronitrile, a molecule observed in space, have been improved. The nuclear quadrupole coupling tensor of difluoroiodomethane was added to a list of variably fluorinated methyl halides upholding a trend for the magnitude of χzz. The study of SrS led to the determination of the Born-Oppenheimer breakdown terms and improving the precision of the SrS internuclear distance. I have also conducted the first pure rotational spectroscopic investigation on an actinide containing molecule, ThO.
Affordances of Instrumentation in General Chemistry Laboratories
The purpose of this study is to find out what students in the first chemistry course at the undergraduate level (general chemistry for science majors) know about the affordances of instrumentation used in the general chemistry laboratory and how their knowledge develops over time. Overall, students see the PASCO™ system as a useful and accurate measuring tool for general chemistry labs. They see the probeware as easy to use, portable, and able to interact with computers. Students find that the PASCO™ probeware system is useful in their general chemistry labs, more advanced chemistry labs, and in other science classes, and can be used in a variety of labs done in general chemistry. Students learn the affordances of the probeware through the lab manual, the laboratory teaching assistant, by trial and error, and from each other. The use of probeware systems provides lab instructors the opportunity to focus on the concepts illustrated by experiments and the opportunity to spend time discussing the results. In order to teach effectively, the instructor must know the correct name of the components involved, how to assemble and disassemble it correctly, how to troubleshoot the software, and must be able to replace broken or missing components quickly. The use of podcasts or Web-based videos should increase student understanding of affordances of the probeware.
Boron Nitride by Atomic Layer Deposition: A Template for Graphene Growth
The growth of single and multilayer BN films on several substrates was investigated. A typical atomic layer deposition (ALD) process was demonstrated on Si(111) substrate with a growth rate of 1.1 Å/cycle which showed good agreement with the literature value and a near stoichiometric B/N ratio. Boron nitride films were also deposited by ALD on Cu poly crystal and Cu(111) single crystal substrates for the first time, and a growth rate of ~1ML/ALD cycle was obtained with a B/N ratio of ~2. The realization of a h-BN/Cu heterojunction was the first step towards a graphene/h-BN/Cu structure which has potential application in gateable interconnects.
Characterization of Novel Solvents and Absorbents for Chemical Separations
Predictive methods have been employed to characterize chemical separation mediums including solvents and absorbents. These studies included creating Abraham solvation parameter models for room-temperature ionic liquids (RTILs) utilizing novel ion-specific and group contribution methodologies, polydimethyl siloxane (PDMS) utilizing standard methodology, and the micelles cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB) and sodium dodecylsulfate (SDS) utilizing a combined experimental setup methodology with indicator variables. These predictive models allows for the characterization of both standard and new chemicals for use in chemical separations including gas chromatography (GC), solid phase microextraction (SPME), and micellar electrokinetic chromatography (MEKC). Gas-to-RTIL and water-to-RTIL predictive models were created with a standard deviation of 0.112 and 0.139 log units, respectively, for the ion-specific model and with a standard deviation of 0.155 and 0.177 log units, respectively, for the group contribution fragment method. Enthalpy of solvation for solutes dissolved into ionic liquids predictive models were created with ion-specific coefficients to within standard deviations of 1.7 kJ/mol. These models allow for the characterization of studied ionic liquids as well as prediction of solute-solvent properties of previously unstudied ionic liquids. Predictive models were created for the logarithm of solute's gas-to-fiber sorption and water-to-fiber sorption coefficient for polydimethyl siloxane for wet and dry conditions. These models were created to standard deviations of 0.198 and 0.122 logunits for gas-to-PDMS wet and dry, respectively, as well as 0.164 and 0.134 log units for water-to-PDMS wet and dry, respectively. These models are particularly useful in solid phase microextraction separations. Micelles were studied to create predictive models of the measured micelle-water partition coefficient as well as models of measured MEKC chromatographic retention factors for CTAB and SDS. The resultant predictive models were created with standard deviations of 0.190 log units for the logarithm of the mole fraction concentration of water-to-CTAB, 0.171 log units for the combined logarithms of both the mole fraction concentration of water-to-CTAB and measured MEKC chromatographic retention factors for CTAB, and 0.153 log units for the combined logarithms of both the mole fraction concentration of water-to-SDS and measured MEKC chromatographic retention factors for SDS.
Chirped-Pulse Fourier Transform Microwave Spectroscopy of Fluoroiodoacetonitrile and Chloropentafluoroacetone
This work focuses on finding the complete iodine and nitrogen nuclear electric quadrupole coupling tensors for fluoroiodoacetonitrile using chirped-pulse Fourier transform microwave spectroscopy. Fluoroiodoacetonitrile contains two hyperfine nuclei, iodine (I=5/2) and nitrogen (I=1) and the spectra were observed with great resolution. A total of 499 transitions were observed for this molecule. The a, b and c rotational constants were obtained. A study of chloropentafluoroacetone was also done using chirped-pulse Fourier transform microwave spectroscopy. The two chlorine isotopes for this molecule, Cl-35 and Cl-37 were observed and 326 and 170 transitions were recorded, respectively.
Computational Investigation of Molecular Optoelectronic and Biological Systems
The scope of work in this dissertation has comprised several major investigations on applications and theoretical studies of ab initio quantum mechanics and density functional theory where those techniques were applied to the following: (i) investigation of the performance of density functionals for the computations of molecular properties of 3d transition metal containing systems; (ii) guidance for experimental groups for rational design of macrometallocyclic multinuclear complexes with superior π-acidity and π-basicity that are most suitable for p- and n-type semiconductors of metal-organic molecules and nanomaterials; (iii) investigation of the metallo-aromaticity of multi-nuclear metal complexes; (iv) investigation of the kinetics and thermodynamics of copper-mediated nitrene insertion into C-H and H-H bond; and (v) accurate computations of dissociation energies of hydrogen-bonded DNA duplex moieties utilizing the resolution of identity correlation consistent composite approach (RI-ccCA).
Computational Studies of Inorganic Systems with a Multiscale Modeling Approach: From Atomistic to Continuum Scale
Multiscale modeling is an effective tool for integrating different computational methods, creating a way of modeling diverse chemical and physical phenomena. Presented are studies on a variety of chemical problems at different computational scales and also the combination of different computational methods to study a single phenomenon. The methods used encompass density functional theory (DFT), molecular dynamics (MD) simulations and finite element analysis (FEA). The DFT studies were conducted both on the molecular level and using plane-wave methods. The particular topics studied using DFT are the rational catalyst design of complexes for C—H bond activation, oxidation of nickel surfaces and the calculation of interaction properties of carbon dioxide containing systems directed towards carbon dioxide sequestration studies. Second and third row (typically precious metals) transition metal complexes are known to possess certain electronic features that define their structure and reactivity, and which are usually not observed in their first-row (base metal) congeners. Can these electronic features be conferred onto first-row transition metals with the aid of non-innocent and/or very high-field ligands? Using DFT, the impact of these electronic features upon methane C—H bond activation was modeled using the dipyridylazaallyl (smif) supporting ligand for late, first-row transition metal (M) imide, oxo and carbene complexes (M = Fe, Co, Ni, Cu; E = O, NMe, CMe2). To promote a greater understanding of the process and nature of metal passivation, first-principles analysis of partially oxidized Ni(111) and Ni(311) surface and ultra-thin film NiO layers on Ni(111) was performed. A bimodal theoretical strategy that considers the oxidation process using either a fixed GGA functional for the description of all atoms in the system, or a perturbation approach, that perturbs the electronic structure of various Ni atoms in contact with oxygen by application of the GGA+U technique was applied. Binding energy of oxygen to the nickel surfaces, charge states of nickel and oxygen, and the preferred binding mode of oxygen to nickel were studied to gain a better understanding of the formation of oxide layers. Using density functional theory, the thermodynamic properties for developing interaction potentials for molecular dynamics simulations of carbon dioxide systems were calculated. The interactions considered are Ni + H2O, Ni + Ni, Ni + CO2, CO2 + CO2, CO2 + H2O and H2O + H2O. These systems were chosen as the possible interactions that can occur when carbon dioxide is stored in the ocean. Molecular dynamics simulations using the results from the DFT studies were also conducted. Finally, thermal conduction analysis was performed on layered functionally graded materials (FGM) subjected to thermal shock by sudden cooling of the material in order to investigate the results obtained from three different mixing laws: linear, quadratic, and half-order. The functionally graded material considered was a composite of nickel and carbon nanotubes at different compositions varying from two to five layers. The middle layers for the three to five layers are composed of graded (i.e., gradually changing) percentages of nickel and carbon nanotube. The thermal conductivity, specific heat and density for the composites were calculated depending on the percentages of materials in each layer, and assuming different rules of mixture.
Computational Study of Small Molecule Activation via Low-Coordinate Late First-Row Transition Metal Complexes
Methane and dinitrogen are abundant precursors to numerous valuable chemicals such as methanol and ammonia, respectively. However, given the robustness of these substrates, catalytically circumventing the high temperatures and pressures required for such transformations has been a challenging task for chemists. In this work, computational studies of various transition metal catalysts for methane C-H activation and N2 activation have been carried out. For methane C-H activation, catalysts of the form LnM=E are studied, where Ln is the supporting ligand (dihydrophosphinoethane or β-diketiminate), E the activating ligand (O, NCH3, NCF3) at which C-H activation takes place, and M the late transition metal (Fe,Co,Ni,Cu). A hydrogen atom abstraction (HAA) / radical rebound (RR) mechanism is assumed for methane functionalization (CH4 à CH3EH). Since the best energetics are found for (β-diket)Ni=O and (β-diket)Cu=O catalysts, with or without CF3 substituents around the supporting ligand periphery, complete methane-to-methanol cycles were studied for such systems, for which N2O was used as oxygen atom transfer (OAT) reagent. Both monometallic and bimetallic OAT pathways are addressed. Monometallic Fe-N2 complexes of various supporting ligands (LnFe-N2) are studied at the beginning of the N2 activation chapter, where the effect of ligand on N2 activation in end-on vs. side-on N2 isomers is discussed. For (β-diket)Fe-N2 complexes, the additional influence of diketiminate donor atom (N(H) vs. S) is briefly addressed. The remainder of the chapter expands upon the treatment of β-diketiminate complexes. First, the activation and relative stabilities of side-bound and end-bound N2 isomers in monometallic ((β-diket)M-N2) and bimetallic ((β-diket)M-N2-M(β-diket)) first row transition metal complexes are addressed. Second, the thermodynamics of H/H+/H- addition to (β-diket)Fe-bound N2, followed by subsequent H additions up to release of ammonia, is discussed, for which two mechanisms (distal and alternating) are considered. Finally, the chapter concludes with partial distal and alternating mechanisms for H addition to N2 in bimetallic (β-diket)Fe-N2-Fe(β-diket) and (β-diket)M-N2-M(β-diket) (M = Ti,V,Fe), respectively.
Cu Electrodeposition on Ru-Ta and Corrosion of Plasma Treated Cu in Post Etch Cleaning Solution
In this work, the possibility of Cu electrodeposition on Ru-Ta alloy thin films is explored. Ru and Ta were sputter deposited on Si substrate with different composition verified by RBS. Four point probe, XRD, TEM and AFM were used to study the properties of Ru-Ta thin films such as sheet resistance, crystallinity, grain size, etc. Cyclic voltammetry is used to study the Cu electrodeposition characteristics on Ru-Ta after various surface pretreatments. The results provide insights on the removal of Ta oxide such that it enables better Cu nucleation and adhesion. Bimetallic corrosion of Cu on modified Ru-Ta surface was studied in CMP related chemicals. In Cu interconnect fabrication process, the making of trenches and vias on low-k dielectric films involves the application of fluorocarbon plasma etch gases. Cu microdots deposited on Ru and Ta substrate were treated by fluorocarbon plasma etch gases such as CF4, CF4+O2, CH2F2, C4F8 and SF6 and investigated by using x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, contact angle measurement and electrochemical techniques. Micropattern corrosion screening technique was used to measure the corrosion rate of plasma treated Cu. XPS results revealed different surface chemistry on Cu after treating with plasma etching. The fluorine/carbon ratio of the etching gases results in different extent of fluorocarbon polymer residues and affects the cleaning efficiency and Cu corrosion trends.
Design and Development of Soft Landing Ion Mobility: A Novel Instrument for Preparative Material Development
The design and fabrication of a novel soft landing instrument Soft Landing Ion Mobility (SLIM) is described here. Topics covered include history of soft landing, gas phase mobility theory, the design and fabrication of SLIM, as well as applications pertaining to soft landing. Principle applications devised for this instrument involved the gas phase separation and selection of an ionized component from a multicomponent gas phase mixture as combing technique to optimize coatings, catalyst, and a variety of alternative application in the sciences.
Design, Synthesis and Screening of Homoleptic and Heteroleptic Platinum(ii) Pyridylazolate Complexes for N-type Semiconducting and Light-emitting Devices
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A series of heteroleptic and homoleptic platinum(II) complexes has been synthesized and characterized towards their use in thin film devices such as organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) and organic thin film transistors (OTFTs). Pyridylpyrazolate- and pyridyltetrazolate-containing ligands were selected due to their structural rigidity and ease of functionalization. Single-crystal x-ray diffraction studies of two selected heteroleptic complexes show strong aggregation with preferential stacking into vertical columns with a varying degree of overlap of the neighboring square planar molecular units. It is shown that the close proximity of the molecules to one another in the stack increases semiconducting character, phosphorescence quantum yields, and shorter radiative lifetimes. The potential for these materials towards incorporation into high-efficiency doping free white OLEDs (DFW-OLEDs) for solid-state lighting and display applications has been realized and will be expanded upon by present and future embodiments of materials in this thesis.
Development of a Laponite Pluronic Composite for Foaming Applications
The focus of the following research was to provide an optimized particle stabilized foam of Laponite and Pluronic L62 in water by understanding (1) the Laponite-Pluronic interactions and properties for improved performance in a particle stabilized foam and (2) the interfacial properties between air and the Laponite-Pluronic complex. These studies were conducted using both bulk and interfacial rheology, XRD, sessile droplet, TGA and UV-vis. Two novel and simple techniques, lamella break point and capillary breakup extensional rheometry, were used to both understand the Laponite Pluronic L62 interaction and determine a different mechanism for foaming properties. Bulk rheological properties identified an optimal Laponite concentration of 2% with Pluronic L62 ranging from 2.5% and 6.5%, due to the ease of flow for the dispersion. The Pluronic L62 was observed to enhance the Laponite bulk rheological properties in solution. Additionally TGA showed a similar trend in thermal resistance to water with both addition of Laponite and Pluronic L62. XRD demonstrated that 0.25% Pluronic intercalated into Laponite from dried 2% Laponite films. XRD demonstrated that the Laponite matrix was saturated at 1% Pluronic L62. UV-vis demonstrated that a monolayer of Pluronic L62 is observed up to 0.65% Pluronic L62 onto Laponite. Interfacial rheology showed that Laponite enhances Pluronic L62 at the air-liquid interface by improving the storage modulus as low at 0.65% Pluronic L62 with 2% Laponite. The lamella breakpoint of Laponite with Pluronic films indicate strong film interaction due to higher increases in mass. Extensional rheology indicates that 2.5% to 6.5% Pluronic with 2% Laponite show the most filament resistance to stretching.
The Development of an Analytical Microwave Electromagnetic Pulse Transmission Probe and Preliminary Test Results
Within this educational endeavor instrumental development was explored through the investigation of microwave induce stable electromagnetic waves within a non-linear yttrium iron garnet ferromagnetic waveguide. The resulting magnetostatic surface waves were investigated as a possible method of rapid analytical evaluation of material composition. Initial analytical results indicate that the interaction seen between wave and material electric and magnetic fields will allow phase coherence recovery andanalysis leading to enhancement of analytical value. The ferromagnetic waveguide selected for this research was a high quality monocrystalline YIG (yttrium iron garnet) film. Magnetostatic spin waves (MSW) were produced within the YIG thin waveguide. Spin waves with desired character were used to analytically scan materials within the liquid and solid phase.
Development of Novel Semi-conducting Ortho-carborane Based Polymer Films: Enhanced Electronic and Chemical Properties
A novel class of semi-conducting ortho-carborane (B10C2H12) based polymer films with enhanced electronic and chemical properties has been developed. The novel films are formed from electron-beam cross-linking of condensed B10C2H12 and B10C2H12 co-condensed with aromatic linking units (Y) (Y=1,4-diaminobenzene (DAB), benzene (BNZ) and pyridine (PY)) at 110 K. The bonding and electronic properties of the novel films were investigated using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), UV photoelectron spectroscopy (UPS) and Mulliken charge analysis using density functional theory (DFT). These films exhibit site-specific cross-linking with bonding, in the pure B10C2HX films, occurring at B sites non-adjacent to C in the B10C2H12 icosahedra. The B10C2H12:Y films exhibit the same phenomena, with cross-linking that creates bonds primarily between B sites non-adjacent to C in the B10C2H12 icosahedra to C sites in the Y linking units. These novel B10C2HX: Y linked films exhibit significantly different electron structure when compared to pure B10C2HX films as seen in the UPS spectra. The valence band maxima (VBM) shift from - 4.3 eV below the Fermi level for pure B10C2HX to -2.6, -2.2, and -1.7 for B10C2HX:BNZ, B10C2HX:PY, and B10C2HX:DAB, respectively. The top of the valence band is composed of states derived primarily from the Y linking units, suggesting that the bottom of the conduction band is composed of states primarily from B10C2H12. Consequently these B10C2HX:Y films may exhibit longer electron-hole separation lifetimes as compared to pure B10C2HX films. This research should lead to an enhancement of boron carbide based neutron detectors, and is of potential significance for microelectronics, spintronics and photo-catalysis.
Effect of fluorine and hydrogen radical species on modified oxidized Ni(Pt)Si
NiSi is an attractive material in the production of CMOS devices. The problem with the utilization of NiSi, is that there is no proper method of cleaning the oxide on the surface. Sputtering is the most common method used for the cleaning, but it has its own complications. Dry cleaning methods include the reactions with radicals and these processes are not well understood and are the focus of the project. Dissociated NF3 and NH3 were used as an alternative and XPS is the technique to analyze the reactions of atomic fluorine and nitrogen with the oxide on the surface. A thermal cracker was used to dissociate the NF3 and NH3 into NFx+F and NHx+H. There was a formation of a NiF2 layer on top of the oxide and there was no evidence of nitrogen on the surface indicating that the fluorine and hydrogen are the reacting species. XPS spectra, however, indicate that the substrate SiO2 layer is not removed by the dissociated NF3 and NiF2 growth process. The NiF2 over layer can be reduced to metallic Ni by reacting with dissociated NH3 at room temperature. The atomic hydrogen from dissociated ammonia reduces the NiF2 but it was determined that the atomic hydrogen from the ammonia does not react with SiO2.
Effects of Using Logic and Spatial Cybergames to Improve Student Success Rates in Lower-Division Chemistry Courses
A study was conducted to investigate the relationships between cybergaming treatment groups and the control group (N = 99: ncontrol = 8; nlogic = 29; nspatial = 30; ncombination = 32) with success in the organic chemistry I course as measured by achievement over a 10-week period. The treatment groups included logic training, spatial training, and combination logic-spatial training. Students' ability was measured by pre/post exams using the Group Assessment of Logical Thinking (GALT) to measure logic ability, Purdue Visualizations of Rotations (ROT) test to measure spatial skills, and the General-Organic-Biochemistry (GOB) Exam to measure content attainment. Finally, students' responses about participation in this experience were evaluated using open- and closed-ended questions on a self-developed survey. A second study was conducted to evaluate the relationship between the cybergaming treatment and control groups (N = 88: nexperimental = 27; ncontrol = 61) with success in the general chemistry I course as measured by achievement and final course averages and grades. The cybergaming treatment group underwent intensive combination logic-spatial training for 10 weeks. Students' progress was measured using three pre/post instruments: Group Assessment of Logical Thinking (GALT) measured logic ability, Purdue Visualizations of Rotations (ROT) Test measured spatial skills, and the California Chemistry Diagnostic Exam measured content attainment. Finally, students' responses about their participation in this experience were evaluated using open- and closed-ended questions on a self-developed survey. Analyses of the data were performed to determine the relationships between cybergaming treatments and control groups in organic chemistry I and general chemistry I courses. In organic chemistry I results showed no statistical or practical significance as to students' success. In general chemistry I results indicated statistical significance and medium practicality for students with an average grade of C and for females over males as to improvement of spatial skills.
Electrochemical Depostion of Bismuth on Ruthenium and Ruthenium Oxide Surfaces
Cyclic voltammetry experiments were performed to compare the electrodeposition characteristics of bismuth on ruthenium. Two types of electrodes were used for comparison: a Ru shot electrode (polycrystalline) and a thin film of radio-frequency sputtered Ru on a Ti/Si(100) support. Experiments were performed in 1mM Bi(NO3)3/0.5M H2SO4 with switching potentials between -0.25 and 0.55V (vs. KCl sat. Ag/AgCl) and a 20mV/s scan rate. Grazing incidence x-ray diffraction (GIXRD) determined the freshly prepared thin film electrode was hexagonally close-packed. After thermally oxidizing at 600°C for 20 minutes, the thin film adopts the tetragonal structure consistent with RuO2. a hydrated oxide film (RuOx?(H2O)y) was made by holding 1.3V on the surface of the film in H2SO4 for 60 seconds and was determined to be amorphous. Underpotential deposition of Bi was observed on the metallic surfaces and the electrochemically oxidized surface; it was not observed on the thermal oxide.
Electrochemical Quartz Crystal Microbalance Study Of Bismuth Underpotential Deposition On Ruthenium And On Electrochemically Formed Ruthenium Oxide
Kinetics and thermodynamics of bismuth (Bi) underpotential deposition (UPD) on ruthenium (Ru) and on electrochemically formed Ru oxide are studied using electrochemical quartz crystal microbalance technique. The Bi UPD and Bi bulk deposition are observed both on Ru and on electrochemically formed Ru oxide electrodes. The anodic peak potential of Bi UPD shifts slightly to positive potential as the scan rate increases. The peak current ratio (IAnode/ICathode) of Bi UPD and Bi bulk increases as the scan rate increases. Bi monolayer coverage calculated from mass (MLMass) and from charge (MLCharge) with scan rates dependent are compared both in Bi UPD region and in Bi bulk region. Stability and oxidation time effects are also investigated. Bi UPD on Ru and on electrochemically formed Ru oxide are quasi-reversible, scan rate independent, oxidation time dependent, and have higher plating efficiency on Ru. However, Bi bulk deposition on Ru and on electrochemically formed Ru oxide are quasi-reversible, scan rate dependent, oxidation time independent, and have higher plating efficiency on electrochemically formed Ru oxide. Both Bi UPD adatoms and Bi bulk are unstable in 0.5M H2SO4.
Electrochemically Deposited Metal Alloy-silicate Nanocomposite Corrosion Resistant Materials
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Zinc-nickel ?-phase silicate and copper-nickel silicate corrosion resistant coatings have been prepared via electrochemical methods to improve currently available corrosion resistant materials in the oil and gas industry. A layered silicate, montmorillonite, has been incorporated into the coatings for increased corrosion protection. For the zinc nickel silicate coatings, optimal plating conditions were determined to be a working pH range of 9.3 -9.5 with a borate based electrolyte solution, resulting in more uniform deposits and better corrosion protection of the basis metal as compared to acidic conditions. Quality, strongly adhering deposits were obtained quickly with strong, even overall coverage of the metal substrate. The corrosion current of the zinc-nickel-silicate coating is Icorr = 3.33E-6 for a borate based bath as compared to a zinc-nickel bath without silicate incorporation (Icorr = 3.52E-5). Step potential and direct potential methods were examined, showing a morphological advantage to step potential deposition. The effect of borate addition was examined in relation to zinc, nickel and zinc-nickel alloy deposition. Borate was found to affect the onset of hydrogen evolution and was examined for absorption onto the electrode surface. For copper-nickel silicate coatings, optimal conditions were determined to be a citrate based electrolytic bath, with pH = 6. The solutions were stable over time and strong adhering, compact particle deposits were obtained. The corrosion current of the copper-nickel-silicate coatings is Icorr = 3.86E-6 (copper-nickel coatings without silicate, Icorr = 1.78E-4). The large decrease in the corrosion current as the silicate is incorporated into the coating demonstrates the increase in corrosion resistance of the coatings with the incorporation of silicates.
Examination and Development of the Correlation Consistent Composite Approach
The primary focus of this dissertation is the advancement of the correlation consistent composite approach (ccCA) methodology from its original formulation to the current implementation. Although for large main group test sets which contained both first- (Li-Ne) and second-row (Na-Ar) species ccCA produced chemical accuracy (generally estimated as a deviation of ~1 kcal mol-1 from reliable experiment), the second-row species were smaller in molecular size in comparison to their corresponding first-row species. Previous theoretical work has shown that the accuracy for theoretical calculations involving second-row species (specifically sulfur-containing species) are more basis set dependent than first-row species. Therefore, an analysis of the accuracy of ccCA for sulfur-containing species is warranted. The ccCA methodology is used to evaluate both enthalpies of formation and bond dissociation energies of sulfur-containing species as well as examine isomerization energies for three sets of sulfur-containing isomers. During the testing of ccCA for sulfur-containing species two observations were made which led to further investigations. First, there is no agreement between different theoretical methodologies on the lowest energetic isomer between SNO and NSO. In fact, G3 and G3B3 which differ only by the geometry of the single-point calculations do not agree on the lowest isomer. For this reason, larger, more complete theoretical treatments of SNO and NSO are investigated. Second, for open-shell sulfur-containing systems the accuracy of the ccCA methodology begins to degrade when spin-contamination becomes non-negligible. Therefore, we investigate the accuracy of the ccCA methodology when spin-contamination is removed from the wavefunction. Finally, the ccCA methodology is utilized in a multilayer ONIOM approach as the high level of theory in conjunction with density functional theory as the low level for the C-H bond dissociation energies of anthracene and fluorene analogues.
Examining and Characterizing Changes in First Year High School Chemistry Curricula
Many students currently entering college are able to solve mathematical problems but often do not understand the chemistry concepts underlying their calculations. High school chemistry teachers from Texas and the United States (US) were surveyed as to what topics they teach in their chemistry classes. A subset of Texas teachers was also interviewed about their instruction. The survey indicated that less-experienced Texas teachers are omitting a number of topics from their chemistry instruction, as compared to more experienced teachers. No differences were seen for those topics among US teachers. Chemistry textbooks from 1930 to the current 2002 Texas state adoptions were analyzed for inclusion of these topics. The only textbooks that were missing topics were from the 1930s. All others contained the topics. In general, textbooks have been increasing numbers of questions and problems for each topic, with the number of quantitative problems increasing at a greater rate than qualitative problems. Analysis of interview transcripts revealed that the main reason for omission of topics by less-experienced Texas chemistry teachers is that these topics are not assessed on the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills science exam. Omitted topics were both qualitative and quantitative; the common factor is that they are not tested. School administrators reportedly reinforce this practice. Archival data regarding textbook usage by general chemistry students showed that students' course grades are not correlated to the amount of time they spend using their textbook. With topics included in textbooks, and no relationship between textbook usage and student grades, observed changes in chemistry courses must be due to changes in classroom instruction. With new course standards adopted by Texas for chemistry and the development of end-of-course exams, these changes should produce graduates who understand chemistry concepts as well as they solve mathematical chemistry problems. Repeating this study in 5 years may show that increasing the amount of chemistry tested will produce students entering college with a better conceptual background in chemistry.
Experimental Determination of L, Ostwald Solubility Solute Descriptor for Illegal Drugs By Gas Chromatography and Analysis By the Abraham Model
The experiment successfully established the mathematical correlations between the logarithm of retention time of illegal drugs with GC system and the solute descriptor L from the Abraham model. the experiment used the method of Gas Chromatography to analyze the samples of illegal drugs and obtain the retention time of each one. Using the Abraham model to calculate and analyze the sorption coefficient of illegal drugs is an effective way to estimate the drugs. Comparison of the experimental data and calculated data shows that the Abraham linear free energy relationship (LFER) model predicts retention behavior reasonably well for most compounds. It can calculate the solute descriptors of illegal drugs from the retention time of GC system. However, the illegal drugs chosen for this experiment were not all ideal for GC analysis. HPLC is the optimal instrument and will be used for future work. HPLC analysis of the illegal drug compounds will allow for the determination of all the solute descriptors allowing one to predict the illegal drugs behavior in various Abraham biological and medical equations. the results can be applied to predict the properties in biological and medical research which the data is difficult to measure. the Abraham model will predict more accurate results by increasing the samples with effective functional groups.
Forensic Science Applications Utilizing Nanomanipulation-Coupled to Nanospray Ionization-Mass Spectrometry for the Analysis of Ultra-Trace Illicit Drugs
Presented in this thesis are two methods that are coupled to the instrumentation for the recovery and analysis of ultra-trace illicit drug residues. The electrostatic dust lifting process is coupled with nanomanipulation-nanospray ionization to retrieve drug particles off of hard surfaces for analysis. For the second method, drug residues from fingerprint impressions are extracted followed by analysis. The methodology of these hyphenated techniques toward forensic science applications is applied as to explore limits of detection, sensitivity, and selectivity of analytes as well as immediacy and efficiency of analysis. The application of nanomanipulation-coupled to nanospray ionization-mass spectrometry toward forensic science based applications is considered as future improvements to trace and ultra-trace analysis.
Free Radical Chemistries at the Surface of Electronic Materials
The focus of the following research was to (1) understand the chemistry involved in nitriding an organosilicate glass substrate prior to tantalum deposition, as well as the effect nitrogen incorporation plays on subsequent tantalum deposition and (2) the reduction of a native oxide, the removal of surface contaminants, and the etching of a HgCdTe surface utilizing atomic hydrogen. These studies were investigated utilizing XPS, TEM and AFM. XPS data show that bombardment of an OSG substrate with NH3 and Ar ions results in the removal of carbon species and the incorporation of nitrogen into the surface. Tantalum deposition onto a nitrided OSG surface results in the initial formation of tantalum nitride with continued deposition resulting in the formation of tantalum. This process is a direct method for forming a thin TaN/Ta bilayer for use in micro- and nanoelectronic devices. Exposure to atomic hydrogen is shown to increase the surface roughness of both air exposed and etched samples. XPS results indicate that atomic hydrogen reduces tellurium oxide observed on air exposed samples via first-order kinetics. The removal of surface contaminants is an important step prior to continued device fabrication for optimum device performance. It is shown here that atomic hydrogen effectively removes adsorbed chlorine from the HgCdTe surface.
Free Radical Induced Oxidation, Reduction and Metallization of NiSi and Ni(Pt)Si Surfaces
NiSi and Ni(Pt)Si, and of the effects of dissociated ammonia on oxide reduction was carried out under controlled ultrahigh vacuum (UHV) conditions. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) has been used to characterize the evolution of surface composition. Vicinal surfaces on NiSi and Ni(Pt)Si were formed in UHV by a combination of Ar+ sputtering and thermal annealing. Oxidation of these surfaces in the presence of either O+O2 or pure O2 at room temperature results in the initial formation of a SiO2 layer ~ 7 Å thick. Subsequent exposure to O2 yields no further oxidation. Continued exposure to O+O2, however, results in rapid silicon consumption and, at higher exposures, the kinetically-driven oxidation of the transition metal(s), with oxides >35Ǻ thick formed on all samples, without passivation. The addition of Pt retards but does not eliminate oxide growth or Ni oxidation. At higher exposures, in Ni(Pt)Si surface the kinetically-limited oxidation of Pt results in Pt silicate formation. Substrate dopant type has almost no effect on oxidation rate. Reduction of the silicon oxide/metal silicate is carried out by reacting with dissociated NH3 at room temperature. The reduction from dissociated ammonia (NHx+H) on silicon oxide/ metal silicate layer shows selective reduction of the metal oxide/silicate layer, but does not react with SiO2 at ambient temperature.
Group 10 Catalyzed Olefin Hydroarylation
Alkyl-arenes are important industry feedstock chemicals that are used as solvents, pharmaceutical precursors, and polymer monomer units. One alkyl-arene, ethylbenzene, is the main focus of this dissertation, and is produced in the million ton a year scale. As alkyl-arenes are important commodity chemicals, catalytic olefin hydroarylation is a lucrative alternative for their production rather than Friedel-Crafts alkylation or various coupling reactions that have lower atom economy, require strong acids, or are energetically demanding. Currently catalytic olefin hydroarylation still suffers from decomposition pathways of the active catalytic complexes, side reactions that lead to waste products, and unfavorable activation barriers, which represent high temperature and pressure. Modifications to the catalytically active system bipyridine platinum(II) (bpyPtII), through computational methods, are explored herein. The work presented here investigates catalytic olefin hydroarylation in order to mitigate the aforementioned difficulties. Included in this study are changes to the electronic profile of the supporting ligand, bpy, through the addition of electron withdrawing or electron donating R groups (methoxy, nitro), definite ligand replacements such as bpy to hydridotris(pyrazolyl)borate (Tp), changes in metal oxidation (II to IV), and replacing the metal center from Pt to Ni. Nickel was selected as a possible alternative to platinum as it is more Earth abundant reducing the monetary requirement for the catalyst. In addition to having a different catalytic energetic profile from platinum. Ni as expected could only facilitate single step hydrogen atom transfers due to its inability to access higher oxidations states.
Homework versus daily quizzes: The effects on academic performance within high school pre-AP chemistry.
This research proposed to evaluate whether homework or daily quizzes were better for academic success within high-school pre-AP chemistry or if differences in the two methods were detectable. The study involved two years of data where homework was assigned and graded and one year of data where homework was suggested but daily quizzes provided the assessment. The mean of each of the unit tests were evaluated and t-tests were calculated. The results showed that over two-thirds of the units had statistically significant data when daily quizzes were utilized.
Impact of Texas High School Science Teacher Credentials on Student Performance in High School Science
A study was conducted to determine the relationship between the credentials held by science teachers who taught at a school that administered the Science Texas Assessment on Knowledge and Skills (Science TAKS), the state standardized exam in science, at grade 11 and student performance on a state standardized exam in science administered in grade 11. Years of teaching experience, teacher certification type(s), highest degree level held, teacher and school demographic information, and the percentage of students who met the passing standard on the Science TAKS were obtained through a public records request to the Texas Education Agency (TEA) and the State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC). Analysis was performed through the use of canonical correlation analysis and multiple linear regression analysis. The results of the multiple linear regression analysis indicate that a larger percentage of students met the passing standard on the Science TAKS state attended schools in which a large portion of the high school science teachers held post baccalaureate degrees, elementary and physical science certifications, and had 11-20 years of teaching experience.
Incorporating Electrochemistry and X-ray Diffraction Experiments Into an Undergraduate Instrumental Analysis Course
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Experiments were designed for an undergraduate instrumental analysis laboratory course, two in X-ray diffraction and two in electrochemistry. Those techniques were chosen due their underrepresentation in the Journal of Chemical Education. Paint samples (experiment 1) and pennies (experiment 2) were characterized using x-ray diffraction to teach students how to identify different metals and compounds in a sample. in the third experiment, copper from a penny was used to perform stripping analyses at different deposition times. As the deposition time increases, the current of the stripping peak also increases. the area under the stripping peak gives the number of coulombs passed, which allows students to calculate the mass of copper deposited on the electrode surface. the fourth experiment was on the effects of variable scan rates on a chemical system. This type of experiment gives valuable mechanistic information about the chemical system being studied.
Interfacial Electrochemistry of Copper and Spectro-Electrochemical Characterization of Oxygen Reduction Reaction
The first part of this dissertation highlights the contents of the electrochemical characterization of Cu and its electroplating on Ru-based substrates. The growth of Ru native oxide does diminish the efficiency of Cu plating on Ru surface. However, the electrochemical formed irreversible Ru hydrate dioxide (RuOxHy) shows better coverage of Cu UPD. The conductive Ru oxides are directly plateable liner materials as potential diffusion barriers for the IC fabrication. The part II of this dissertation demonstrates the development of a new rapid corrosion screening methodology for effective characterization Cu bimetallic corrosion in CMP and post-CMP environments. The corrosion inhibitors and antioxidants were studied in this dissertation. In part III, a new SEC methodology was developed to study the ORR catalysts. This novel SEC cell can offer cheap, rapid optical screening results, which helps the efficient development of a better ORR catalyst. Also, the SEC method is capable for identifying the poisoning of electrocatalysts. Our data show that the RuOxHy processes several outstanding properties of ORR such as high tolerance of sulfation, high kinetic current limitation and low percentage of hydrogen peroxide.
Investigating Molecular Structures: Rapidly Examining Molecular Fingerprints Through Fast Passage Broadband Fourier Transform Microwave Spectroscopy
Microwave spectroscopy is a gas phase technique typically geared toward measuring the rotational transitions of Molecules. The information contained in this type of spectroscopy pertains to a molecules structure, both geometric and electronic, which give insight into a molecule's chemistry. Typically this type of spectroscopy is high resolution, but narrowband ≤1 MHz in frequency. This is achieved by tuning a cavity, exciting a molecule with electromagnetic radiation in the microwave region, turning the electromagnetic radiation o, and measuring a signal from the molecular relaxation in the form of a free induction decay (FID). The FID is then Fourier transformed to give a frequency of the transition. "Fast passage" is defined as a sweeping of frequencies through a transition at a time much shorter (≤10 s) than the molecular relaxation (≈100 s). Recent advancements in technology have allowed for the creation of these fast frequency sweeps, known as "chirps", which allow for broadband capabilities. This work presents the design, construction, and implementation of one such novel, high-resolution microwave spectrometer with broadband capabilities. The manuscript also provides the theory, technique, and motivations behind building of such an instrument. In this manuscript it is demonstrated that, although a gas phase technique, solids, liquids, and transient species may be studied with the spectrometer with high sensitivity, making it a viable option for many molecules wanting to be rotationally studied. The spectrometer has a relative correct intensity feature that, when coupled with theory, may ease the difficulty in transition assignment and facilitate dynamic chemical studies of the experiment. Molecules studied on this spectrometer have, in turn, been analyzed and assigned using common rotational spectroscopic analysis. Detailed theory on the analysis of these molecules has been provided. Structural parameters such as rotational constants and centrifugal distortion constants have been determined and reported for most molecules in the document. Where possible, comparisons have been made amongst groups of similar molecules to try and get insight into the nature of the bonds those molecules are forming. This has been achieved the the comparisons of nuclear electric quadrupole and nuclear magnetic coupling constants, and the results therein have been determined and reported.
Investigation of Novel Electrochemical Synthesis of Bioapatites and Use in Elemental Bone Analysis
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In this research, electrochemical methods are used to synthesize the inorganic fraction of bone, hydroxyapatite, for application in biological implants and as a calibration material for elemental analysis in human bone. Optimal conditions of electrochemically deposited uniform apatite coatings on stainless steel were investigated. Apatite is a ceramic with many different phases and compositions that have beneficial characteristics for biomedical applications. Of those phases hydroxyapatite (HA) is the most biocompatible and is the primary constituent of the inorganic material in bones. HA coatings on metals and metal alloys have the ability to bridge the growth between human tissues and implant interface, where the metal provides the strength and HA provides the needed bioactivity. The calcium apatites were electrochemically deposited using a modified simulated body fluid adjusted to pH 4-10, for 1-3 hours at varying temperature of 25-65°C while maintaining cathodic potentials of -1.0 to -1.5V. It was observed that the composition and morphology of HA coatings change during deposition by the concentration of counter ions in solution, pH, temperature, applied potential, and post-sintering. The coatings were characterized by powder x-ray diffraction, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, and scanning electron microscopy. The precipitated powders from the experiment were also characterized, with results showing similarities to biological apatite. There is a need for quantitative elemental analysis of calcified biological matrices such as bone and teeth; however there are no suitable calibration materials commercially available for quantitative analysis. Matrix-matched standards are electrochemically synthesized for LA-ICP-MS analysis of human bone. The synthetic bioapatite is produced via a hydrothermal electrochemical process using a simulated body fluid solution to form hydroxyapatite. Additional bioapatite standards are synthesized containing trace amounts of metals. The x-ray diffraction of the synthesized standards shows an increase in cell volume for the crystal structure from 0.534 to 0.542 nm3 with the substitution of metals into the crystal structure. The analyte concentration and recoveries for the synthesized standards and reference materials were determined by ICP-MS with % RSD below 6.3% and limits of detection below 1.2 ng/mL for trace metals. The electrochemically synthesized bioapatite was also compared to standard reference materials with X-ray diffraction, FTIR, and Raman spectroscopy. Optimum laser ablation parameters were determined for the standards and human bone. The synthesized standards were homogeneous and the reproducibility for the isotope concentrations determined by LA-ICP-MS was between 3-10 % compared to 10-35% for SRM 1486 Bone Meal and SRM 1486 Bone Ash. A quantitative method has been developed for 2D mapping using LA-ICP-MS and the matrix-matched standards of metal-doped biopaptite to characterize metal concentrations in human bone. Laser ablation parameters for the method are refined resulting in concentration (ug/g) contour map measurements for each isotope measured in the human bone. Essential and non-essential metals, Al, Ca, Cu, Fe, Pb, and Zn are quantitatively mapped using these parameters. Limit of detection for the metals in the bone range from 0.001 to 0.08 ug/g. The LA-ICP-MS analysis method developed proves to be a straightforward and simple method for quantitative analysis of human bone.
Kinetic Investigation of the Gas Phase Atomic Sulfur and Nitrogen Dioxide Reaction
The kinetics of the reaction of atomic sulfur and nitrogen dioxide have been investigated over the temperature range 298 to 650 K and pressures from 14 - 405 mbar using the laser flash photolysis - resonance fluorescence technique. The overall bimolecular rate expression k (T) = (1.88 ± 0.49) x10-11 exp-(4.14 ± 0.10 kJ mol-1)/RT cm3 molecule-1 s-1 is derived. Ab initio calculations were performed at the CCSD(T)/CBS level of theory and a potential energy surface has been derived. RRKM theory calculations were performed on the system. It is found that an initially formed SNO2 is vibrationally excited and the rate of collisional stabilization is slower than the rate of dissociation to SO + NO products by a factor of 100 - 1000, under the experimental conditions.
Kinetics of Sulfur: Experimental Study of the Reaction of Atomic Sulfur with Acetylene and Theoretical Study of the Cn + So Potential Energy Surface
The kinetics of the reaction of atomic sulfur with acetylene (S (3P) + C2H2) were investigated experimentally via the flash photolysis resonance fluorescence method, and the theoretical potential energy surface for the reaction CN + SO was modeled via the density functional and configuration interaction computational methods. Sulfur is of interest in modern chemistry due to its relevance in combustion and atmospheric chemistry, in the Claus process, in soot and diamond-film formation and in astrochemistry. Experimental conditions ranged from 295 – 1015 K and 10 – 400 Torr of argon. Pressure-dependence was shown at all experimental temperatures. The room temperature high-pressure limit second order rate constant was (2.10 ± 0.08) × 10-13 cm3 molecule-1 s-1. The Arrhenius plot of the high-pressure limit rate constants gave an Ea of (11.34 ± 0.03) kJ mol-1 and a pre-exponential factor of (2.14 ± 0.19) × 10-11 cm3 molecule-1 s-1. S (3P) + C2H2 is likely an adduct forming reaction due to pressure-dependence (also supported by a statistical mechanics analysis) which involves intersystem crossing. The potential energy surface for CN + SO was calculated at the B3LYP/6-311G(d) level and refined at the QCISD/6-311G(d) level. The PES was compared to that of the analogous reaction CN + O2. Notable energetically favorable products are NCS + O, CO + NS, and CS + NO. The completed PES will ultimately be modeled at the CCSD(T) level (extrapolated to infinite basis set limit) for theoretical reaction rate analysis (RRKM).
Knowledge Discovery of Nanotube Mechanical Properties With an Informatics-Molecular Dynamics Approach
Carbon nanotubes (CNT) have unparalleled mechanical properties, spanning several orders of magnitude over both length and time scales. Computational and experimental results vary greatly, partly due to the multitude of variables. Coupling physics-based molecular dynamics (MD) with informatics methodologies is proposed to navigate the large problem space. The adaptive intermolecular reactive empirical bond order (AIREBO) is used to model short range, long range and torsional interactions. A powerful approach that has not been used to study CNT mechanical properties is the derivation of descriptors and quantitative structure property relationships (QSPRs). For the study of defected single-walled CNTs (SWCNT), two descriptors were identified as critical: the density of non-sp2 hybridized carbons and the density of methyl groups functionalizing the surface. It is believed that both of these descriptors can be experimentally measured, paving the way for closed-loop computational-experimental development. Informatics can facilitate discovery of hidden knowledge. Further evaluation of the critical descriptors selected for Poisson’s ratio lead to the discovery that Poisson’s ratio has strain-varying nonlinear elastic behavior. CNT effectiveness in composites is based both on intrinsic mechanical properties and interfacial load transfer. In double-walled CNTs, inter-wall bonds are surface defects that decrease the intrinsic properties but also improve load transfer. QSPRs can be used to model these inverse effects and pinpoint the optimal amount of inter-wall bonds.
Microwave-Assisted Synthesis, Characterization, and Photophysical Properties of New Rhenium(I) Pyrazolyl-Triazine Complexes
The reaction of the chelating ligand 4-[4,6-bis(3,5-dimethyl-1H-pyrazol-1-yl)-1,3,5-triazin-2-yl]-N,N-diethyl-benzenamine, L, with pentacarbonylchlororhenium by conventional heating method produces the complexes fac-[ReL(CO)3Cl2] and fac-[Re2L(CO)6Cl2] in a period of 48 hours. The use of microwaves as the source of heat and the increase in the equivalents of one of the reactants leads to a more selective reaction and also decreases the reaction time to 1 hour. After proper purification, the photophysical properties of fac-[ReL(CO)3Cl] were analyzed. The solid-state photoluminescence analysis showed an emission band at 628 nm independent of temperature. However, in the solution studies, the emission band shifted from 550 nm in frozen media to 610 nm when the matrix became fluid. These results confirm that this complex possess a phenomenon known as rigidochromism.
Modeling Transition Metal Catalysts for Small Molecule Activation and Functionalization
There is a high demand for the development of processes for the conversion of ubiquitous molecules into industrially useful commodities. Transition metal catalysts are often utilized for the activation and functionalization of small organic molecules due to their diverse nature and proven utility with a myriad of chemical transformations. The functionalization of methane (CH4) and dinitrogen (N2) to methanol (CH3OH) and ammonia (NH3) respectively is of particular interest; however, both methane and dinitrogen are essentially inert due to the inherit strength of their bonds. In this dissertation a series of computational studies is performed to better understand the fundamental chemistry behind the functionalization of methane and the activation of dinitrogen in a homogeneous environment. A catalytic cycle is proposed for the oxy-functionalization of methane to methanol. The cycle consists of two key steps: (1) C-H activation across a metal-alkoxide bond (M-OR), and (2) regeneration of the M-OR species through an oxy-insertion step utilizing external oxidants. The C-H activation step has been extensively studied; however, the latter step is not as well understood with limited examples. For this work, we focus on the oxy-insertion step starting with a class of compounds known to do C-H activation (i.e., Pt(II) systems). Computational studies have been carried out in an attempt to guide experimental collaborators to promising new systems. Thus, the majority of this dissertation is an attempt to extend transition metal mediated C-O bond forming reactions to complexes known to perform C-H activation chemistry. The last chapter involves a computational study of the homogeneous cleavage of N2 utilizing iron-?-diketiminate fragments. This reaction has been studied experimentally, however, the reactive intermediates were not isolated and the mechanism of this reaction was unknown. Density functional theory (DFT) calculations are carried out to elucidate the mechanism of the reductive cleavage of N2 via the sequential addition of iron- ?-diketiminate fragments to N2 to form a bis-nitride (N3-) intermediate. The role of potassium promoters on the dinitrogen and bis-nitride species is also investigated.
Modeling Transition Metal Chemistry for Catalytic Functionalization of Molecules
The diversity of transition metal complexes allows for a wide range of chemical processes to be mediated by the metal, from catalysis to surface chemistry. Investigations into the structure and electronic configuration of transition metal complexes allow for tuning of desired species by modifications to the ligands and/or metals to achieve more efficient thermodynamics and kinetics for the process of interest. Transition metals, often used in catalysts for a number of important processes, require detailed descriptions of intermediates, transition states and products to fully characterize a reaction mechanism(s) in order to design more active and efficient catalysts. Computational investigations into inorganic catalysts are explored with the aim of understanding the activity of each species and how modifications of supporting ligands, co-ligands and metals vary the interaction along the reaction pathway. Reported results give important insight into the development of the most active complexes in addition to determining the least active complexes to aid experimental development. This report first investigates the mechanisms of two unique transfer reactions: 1) formation of low coordinate nickel-nitrene ((P~P)Ni=NR; P~P = 1,2-bis(dihydrophosphino)-ethane or 1,2-bis(difluoromethylphosphino)-ethane) complexes as catalysts for nitrogen atom transfer and 2) oxidation of a triphosphorus niobium complex, [(η2-P3SnPh3)Nb(OMe)3], for the transfer of the phosphorus synthon, Ph3SnP3. These reactions have utility in the synthesis of nitrogen and phosphorus containing molecules, respectively, and the results presented provide mechanistic insight into the synthesis of the organometallic intermediates. Additionally, a computational approach towards rational catalyst design was performed on the ruthenium based hydroarylation catalyst TpRu(CO)(Ph) [Tp = hydrido-tris(pyrazolyl)borate]. Targeted modifications at the Tp, metal and co-ligand (CO) sites were studied in order to tune the electronics and sterics of the catalyst. Modifications, through computational methods, provided a more cost- and time-efficient way to study the impact of modifications, which provided direct input into attractive synthetic targets. The research described heir in highlights the use of computational chemistry methodologies, specifically DFT, in collaboration with experimental results, for the accurate description of reaction geometries and factors influencing the thermodynamics and kinetics of the systems. Valuable insight is gained by treating inorganic complexes with theoretical methods and additionally provides a fast, cheap way to predict and understand the chemistry of such complex systems.
Molecular Structure Analyses of Asymmetric Hydrocarbon Liquid Compounds in the Gas Phase Using Chirped-pulse Fourier Transform Microwave Spectroscopy: Acyl Chlorides and Perfluorinated Acyl Chlorides
Examinations of the effects of (a.) alkyl carbon chain length and (b.) perfluorination of acyl chlorides; propionyl chloride, butyryl chloride, valeroyl chloride, and perfluorinated acyl chlorides; perfluoropropionyl chloride and perfluorobutyryl chloride, are reported and compared using CP-FTMW spectroscopy. All of these molecules are already published in various journals except for valeroyl chloride. The chapters are organized by molecule alkyl chain length and include some background theory. Conformational stability, internal rotation, helicity, and ionic character of the C-Cl bond via the nuclear electric quadrupole coupling constant (χzz) are analyzed. Results show syn, syn-anti/syn-gauche, and syn-anti-anti/syn-gauche-anti stable conformations. Internal rotation was only seen in propionyl chloride. Helicity was not observed. (χzz) was observed to be inert to alkyl chain length, ~ 60 MHz and ~ 65 MHz for the nonfluorinated and fluorinated acyl chlorides. Partial fluorination and varying functional groups are recommended.
Nanoparticles Engineered to Bind Serum Albumin: Microwave Assisted Synthesis, Characterization, and Functionalization of Fluorescently-Labeled, Acrylate-Based, Polymer Nanoparticles
The potential use of polymeric, functionalized nanoparticles (NPs) as drug delivery vectors was explored. Covalent conjugation of albumin to the surface of NPs via maleimide chemistry proved problematic. However, microwave assisted synthesis of NPs was not only time efficient, but enabled the exploration of size control by changing the following parameters: temperature, microwave power, reaction time, initiator concentration, and percentage of monomer used. About 1.5 g of fluorescently-labeled, carboxylic acid-functionalized NPs (100 nm diameter) were synthesized for a total cost of less than $1. Future work will address further functionalization of the NPs for the coupling of albumin (or other targeted proteins), and tests for in vivo biodistribution.
A New Chromophoric Organic Molecule Toward Improved Molecular Optoelectronic Devices
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The characterization of 2,3,6,7,10,11-hexabromotriphenylene, Br6TP, is presented toward its potential use as an n-type organic semiconductor and metal-free room temperature phosphor. The crystal structure shows both anisotropic two-dimensional BrBr interactions and inter-layer ?-stacking interactions. Photophysical characteristics were evaluated using solid-state photoluminescence and diffuse reflectance spectroscopies, revealing significantly red-shifted excitations in the visible region for the yellow solid material (compared to ultraviolet absorption bands for the colorless dilute solutions). Correlation of spectral, electrochemical, and computational data suggest the presence of an n-type semiconducting behavior due to the electron-poor aromatic ring. The material shows excellent thermal stability as demonstrated by thermogravimetric analysis and infrared spectra of a thin film deposited by thermal evaporation. The potential for Br6TP and its analogues toward use in several types of photonic and electronic devices is discussed.
Photophysics and Photochemistry of Copper(I) Phosphine and Collidine Complexes: An Experimental/Theoretical Investigation
Copper(I) complexes have been studied through both experimental and computational means in the presented work. Overall, the work focuses on photophysical and photochemical properties of copper(I) complexes. Photophysical and photochemical properties are found to be dependent on the geometries of the copper(I) complexes. One of the geometric properties that are important for both photochemical and photophysical properties is coordination number. Coordination numbers have been observed to be dependent on both ligand size and recrystallization conditions. The complexes geometric structure, as well as the electronic effects of the coordination ligands, is shown both computationally as well as experimentally to affect the emission energies. Two-coordinate complexes are seen to have only weak emission at liquid nitrogen temperature (77 K), while at room temperature (298 K) the two-coordinate complexes are not observed to be luminescent. Three-coordinate complexes are observed to be luminescent at liquid nitrogen temperature as well as at room temperature. The three-coordinate complexes have a Y-shaped ground (S0) state that distorts towards a T-shape upon photoexcitation to the lowest lying phosphorescent state (T1). The geometric distortion is tunable by size of the coordinating ligand. Luminescence is controllable by limiting the amount of non-radiative emission. One manner by which non-radiative emission is controlled is the amount of geometric distortion that occurs as the complex undergoes photoexcitation. Bulky ligands allow for less distortion than smaller ligands, leading to higher emission energies (blue shifted energies) with higher quantum efficiency. Tuning emission and increasing quantum efficiencies can be used to create highly efficient, white emitting materials for use in white OLEDS.
Podcast Effectiveness as Scaffolding Support for Students Enrolled in First-Semester General Chemistry Laboratories
Podcasts covering essential first-semester general chemistry laboratory techniques and central concepts that aid in experimental design or data processing were prepared and made available for students to access on an as-needed basis on iPhones- or iPod touches-. Research focused in three areas: the extent of podcast usage, the numbers and types of interactions between instructors and research teams, and student performance on graded assignments. Data analysis indicates that the podcast treatment research teams accessed a podcast 2.86 times on average during each week that podcasts were available. Comparison of interaction data for the lecture treatment research teams and podcast treatment research teams reveals that interactions with instructors were statistically significantly fewer for teams that had podcast access rather than a pre‐laboratory lecture. The implication of the results is that student research teams were able to gather laboratory information more effectively when it was presented in an on-demand podcast format. Finally, statistical analysis of data on student performance on graded assignments indicates no significant differences between outcome measures for the treatment groups when compared as cohorts. The only statistically significant difference is between students judged to be highly motivated; for this sub‐group the students in the podcast treatment group earned a course average that was statistically significantly higher than those in the lecture treatment group. This research study provides some of the first data collected on the effectiveness of podcasts delivered as needed in a first-semester general chemistry laboratory setting.
The Pure Rotational Spectra of Diatomics and Halogen-Addition Benzene Measured by Microwave and Radio Frequency Spectrometers
Two aluminum spherical mirrors with radii of 203.2 mm and radii of curvature also of 203.2 mm have been used to construct a tunable Fabry-Perót type resonator operational at frequencies as low as 500 MHz. The resonator has been incorporated into a pulsed nozzle, Fourier transform, Balle-Flygare spectrometer. The spectrometer is of use in recording low J transitions of large asymmetric molecules where the spectra are often greatly simplified compared to higher frequency regions. The resonators use is illustrated by recording the rotational spectra of bromobenzene and iodobenzene. In related experiments, using similar equipment, the pure rotational spectra of four isotopomers of SrS and all three naturally occurring isotopomers of the actinide-containing compound thorium monoxide have been recorded between 6 and 26 GHz. The data have been thoroughly analyzed to produce information pertaining to bond lengths and electronic structures.
Rational Design of Metal-organic Electronic Devices: a Computational Perspective
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Organic and organometallic electronic materials continue to attract considerable attention among researchers due to their cost effectiveness, high flexibility, low temperature processing conditions and the continuous emergence of new semiconducting materials with tailored electronic properties. In addition, organic semiconductors can be used in a variety of important technological devices such as solar cells, field-effect transistors (FETs), flash memory, radio frequency identification (RFID) tags, light emitting diodes (LEDs), etc. However, organic materials have thus far not achieved the reliability and carrier mobility obtainable with inorganic silicon-based devices. Hence, there is a need for finding alternative electronic materials other than organic semiconductors to overcome the problems of inferior stability and performance. In this dissertation, I research the development of new transition metal based electronic materials which due to the presence of metal-metal, metal-?, and ?-? interactions may give rise to superior electronic and chemical properties versus their organic counterparts. Specifically, I performed computational modeling studies on platinum based charge transfer complexes and d10 cyclo-[M(?-L)]3 trimers (M = Ag, Au and L = monoanionic bidentate bridging (C/N~C/N) ligand). The research done is aimed to guide experimental chemists to make rational choices of metals, ligands, substituents in synthesizing novel organometallic electronic materials. Furthermore, the calculations presented here propose novel ways to tune the geometric, electronic, spectroscopic, and conduction properties in semiconducting materials. In addition to novel material development, electronic device performance can be improved by making a judicious choice of device components. I have studied the interfaces of a p-type metal-organic semiconductor viz cyclo-[Au(µ-Pz)]3 trimer with metal electrodes at atomic and surface levels. This work was aimed to guide the device engineers to choose the appropriate metal electrodes considering the chemical interactions at the interface. Additionally, the calculations performed on the interfaces provided valuable insight into binding energies, charge redistribution, change in the energy levels, dipole formation, etc., which are important parameters to consider while fabricating an electronic device. The research described in this dissertation highlights the application of unique computational modeling methods at different levels of theory to guide the experimental chemists and device engineers toward a rational design of transition metal based electronic devices with low cost and high performance.
Sensitization of Lanthanides and Organic-Based Phosphorescence via Energy Transfer and Heavy-Atom Effects
The major topics discussed are the phosphorescence sensitization in the lanthanides via energy transfer and in the organics by heavy atom effects. The f-f transitions in lanthanides are parity forbidden and have weak molar extinction coefficients. Upon complexation with the ligand, ttrpy (4'-p-Tolyl-[2,2':6',2"]-terpyridine) the absorption takes place through the ligand and the excitation is transferred to the lanthanides, which in turn emit. This process is known as "sensitized luminescence." Bright red emission from europium and bright green emission from terbium complexes were observed. There is ongoing work on the making of OLEDs with neutral complexes of lanthanide hexafluoroacetyl acetonate/ttrpy, studied in this dissertation. Attempts to observe analogous energy transfer from the inorganic donor complexes of Au(I) thiocyanates were unsuccessful due to poor overlap of the emissions of these systems with the absorptions of Eu(III) and Tb(III). Photophysics of silver-aromatic complexes deals with the enhancement of phosphorescence in the aromatics. The heavy atom effect of the silver is responsible for this enhancement in phosphorescence. Aromatics such as naphthalene, perylene, anthracene and pyrene were involved in this study. Stern Volmer plots were studied by performing the quenching studies. The quenchers employed were both heavy metals such as silver and thallium and lighter metal like potassium. Dynamic quenching as the predominant phenomenon was noticed.
Soft Landing Ion Mobility Mass Spectrometry: History, Instrumentation and an Ambient Pressure Application
Preparative mass spectrometry is an important method for the synthesis of new materials. Recently, soft landing mass spectrometry has been used to land ions on surfaces to coat or otherwise alter them. Commercial soft landing instruments do not yet exist, and the physical phenomenon of soft landing has not yet been fully described. For future ion mobility soft landing research, the theory of ion mobility, ion optics and soft landing is discussed, and 2 soft landing instruments have been built and described, along with proof of concept experiments for both instruments. Simulations of the process of ion mobility and ion optics for use in these instruments, as well as some preliminary results for the optics are included. Surfaces described include copper on mica and iron on silicon. Self assembly of soft landed ions is observed on the surfaces. The instruments constructed will be useful for future soft landing research, and soft landing can be used for future materials research with special attention focused on the self-assembly of the landed ions.
Study of Novel Ion/surface Interactions Using Soft-landing Ion Mobility
Preparative mass spectrometry is a gas-phase ion deposition technique aimed at deposition of monodisperse ion beams on a surface. This is accomplished through the implementation of a soft-landing ion mobility system which allows for high ion flux of conformationally selected ion packets. The soft-landing ion mobility system has been applied to a number of unique chemical problems including the deposition of insulators on graphene, the preparation of reusable surface enhanced Raman spectroscopic substrates, and the deposition of uranium nanoparticles. Soft-landing ion mobility provided a platform for the quick deposition of usable amounts of materials, which is the major objective of preparative mass spectrometry. Soft-landing ion mobility is unique when compared to other preparative mass spectrometric techniques in that the ion packets are conformationally separated, not separated on mass to charge ratio. This provides orthogonal complementary data to traditional mass spectrometric techniques and allows for the study of conformationally monodisperse surfaces. The diversity of problems that have been and continued to be explored with soft-landing ion mobility highlight the utility of the technique as a novel tool for the study of multiple ion/surface interactions.
Supramolecular Solar Cells
Supramolecular chemistry - chemistry of non-covalent bonds including different type of intermolecular interactions viz., ion-pairing, ion-dipole, dipole-dipole, hydrogen bonding, cation-p and Van der Waals forces. Applications based on supramolecular concepts for developing catalysts, molecular wires, rectifiers, photochemical sensors have been evolved during recent years. Mimicking natural photosynthesis to build energy harvesting devices has become important for generating energy and solar fuels that could be stored for future use. In this dissertation, supramolecular chemistry is being explored for creating light energy harvesting devices. Photosensitization of semiconductor metal oxide nanoparticles, such as titanium dioxide (TiO2) and tin oxide (SnO2,), via host-guest binding approach has been explored. In the first part, self-assembly of different porphyrin macrocyclic compounds on TiO2 layer using axial coordination approach is explored. Supramolecular dye sensitized solar cells built based on this approach exhibited Incident Photon Conversion Efficiency (IPCE) of 36% for a porphyrin-ferrocene dyad. In the second part, surface modification of SnO2 with water soluble porphyrins and phthalocyanine resulted in successful self-assembly of dimers on SnO2 surface. IPCE more than 50% from 400 - 700 nm is achieved for the supramolecular self-assembled heterodimer photocells is achieved. In summary, the axial ligation and ion-pairing method used as supramolecular tools to build photocells, exhibited highest quantum efficiency of light energy conversion with panchromatic spectral coverage. The reported findings could be applied to create interacting molecular systems for next generation of efficient solar energy harvesting devices.