David Hatchett

Dr. Hatchett’s research focuses on the dissolution, coordination, and solubility of f-element species dissolved into ionic liquids. Ionic liquids (ILs) are chemically stable purely ionic solutions at room temperature and they are composed of cation/anion pairs that can be exploited to provide a wide range of tunable physical and chemical properties. Ionic liquids also provide unique solution environments for electrochemical deposition of actinides because traditional side-reactions associated with common working electrodes in aqueous solution are eliminated. The potential windows associated with GC, Pt, and Au working electrodes in IL,   ([Me3BuN] [TFSI] trimethyl-n-butylmethylammonium bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide provide an absolute potential window of approximately 4.5 V for Pt, 5.0 V for Au, and 6.0 V for GC, which encompass the thermodynamic potentials associated with the oxidation/reduction of actinide species to metal. The electrochemical deposition and formation of actinide thin films at electrode interfaces is the primary goal. The methods that are utilized include the synthesis of actinide TFSI complexes that can be directly dissolved into the ionic liquid [Me3BuN] [TFSI] trimethyl-n-butylmethylammonium bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide. The goal of the research is to increase the ultimate solubility and to facilitate the in-situ formation of stable, coordinated actinide complexes to provide a more systematic and comprehensive approach to the electrochemical deposition of actinides films. To date we have successfully demonstrated the deposition of U metal from ionic liquid using electrochemical methods. Similar results have been obtained for more electropositive lanthanide species.

Sean Casey

Our research is centered on the investigation of growth mechanisms of semiconductor materials during processes such as plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD). To mimic these plasmas under more carefully controlled conditions, we use a hyperthermal beam of the reactive species of interest and single crystal semiconductor wafers.

Sergey Varganov

Our research centers on application and development of electronic structure theory and molecular dynamics. The main areas of interest are catalytic properties of metal nanoclusters, coherent control of chemical reactions and electronic structure methods for strongly correlated electrons.

Laina Geary

developing strategies to synthesize complex organic molecules and biologically relevant structures from the simplest precursors, and understanding the mechanistic details. Essentially, we are interested in developing highly chemoselective reactions to minimize substrate preactivation and waste generation and maximize functional group compatibility.

Students will get training in organic synthesis, organometallic chemistry, and asymmetric catalysis within the broad goal of simplicity to complexity via C-C bond formation.

Spencer Steinberg

Spencer Steinberg, Ph.D., is a Professor of Chemistry at the University of Nevada Las Vegas, where he teaches general, analytical and environmental chemistry courses at both undergraduate and graduate levels. Dr. Steinberg has over thirty years of experience in basic and applied research related to the environmental analytical chemistry of the atmosphere, soil and water. His research focuses on quantifying trace organic and inorganic compounds in complex matrices.
Dr. Steinberg’s recent research projects encompass a range of topics which include method development for determination of trace volatile organic compounds in soil and water, detection of silver nanoparticles in water, photochemical formation of oxidants in heterogeneous systems, characterization of natural organic matter in soil and water and the characterization of municipal solid waste. He has also developed ongoing collaborations with various colleges in material science and biology. His research has been funded by the NASA, the US EPA and The US-DOE.
Dr. Steinberg holds a Ph.D. in Marine Chemistry from the University of California, San Diego Scripps Institution of Oceanography.

Amber Howerton

Dr. Howerton is an Assistant Professor of Chemistry at Nevada State College.  Dr. Howerton is actively involved in undergraduate research both as independent studies during the school year and as a mentor in summer NSF-INBRE.  Her research centers around sporulating bacteria (Bacillus anthracis, Bacillus cereus, Clostridium difficile).  Her students have studied germination kinetics to identify activation and inhibition compounds, synthesized potential spore germination inhibitors and studied the inflammation response initiated by these bacterial toxins and spore proteins. Also, as a researcher of C. diff,  she is interested in the microbiome of the intestine before and after antibiotic use.  Her students have studied bile salt hydrolases and their expression before and after rodents are treated with antibiotics. It is possible these enzymes play some role in the observable different susceptibility of rodents to C.diff.  She is always up for new adventures if students present me with a workable research proposal!

Brian Frost

The Frost group is interested in the development of new inorganic and organometallic complexes for use in aqueous and biphasic catalysis. Organometallic chemistry and catalysis remain exciting areas of research with many opportunities for fundamental, not to mention pedagogical, contributions. We are interested in the synthesis, structure, and reactivity of inorganic and organometallic complexes with emphasis on those applicable to catalysis. Techniques utilized in our laboratory include, but are not limited to, computational chemistry, multinuclear NMR spectroscopy (1H, 13C, 31P), UV-vis spectroscopy, mass specrometry, X-ray crystallography, and in situ IR using ASI’s ReactIR 4000.TM

Benjamin King

Lead research in organic chemistry, advanced materials, polymers, and organic semiconductors.

Vaidyanathan (Ravi) Subramanian

Ravi Subramanian is currently an associate professor of chemical engineering. He is on the graduate faculty of the Electrical and Biomedical Engineering Department and an adjunct in the Chemistry Department. He is also the solar energy thrust area coordinator in the Renewable Energy Center at the University. His area of research focus is on nanostructured materials for solar energy utilization. He has expertise in the synthesis, characterization and application of photoactive materials in photovoltaics, clean fuel production and environmental remediation. In his 12 years of research he has developed inorganic materials including semiconductor-semiconductor and semiconductor-metal nanocomposites for applications related to solar energy utilization and fuel cells.

Materials discovery and devices development to harvest solar energy continues to be a challenge. Eco-friendly and earth abundant elements have a great potential to harvest solar energy. With solar energy: your future is bright!

Robert Sheridan

Our research revolves around highly reactive organic molecules. These unstable and elusive intermediates, such as carbenes, nitrenes, and biradicals, are especially important in photochemistry, but their chemistry and properties are poorly understood. Moreover, these molecules are related to searches for organic conducting and magnetic materials. Much of the organic synthesis that we carry out involves making previously unknown compounds, and we spend a considerable amount of our time developing new synthetic methods to tackle these challenging molecules. A specialized technique that we use to study reaction intermediates involves matrix isolation photochemistry. In this method, organic molecules are frozen into glasses of inert gas at extremely low temperatures (10 Kelvin). The samples are then irradiated with UV light to generate highly reactive intermediates. The low temperatures and high dilution in inert surroundings protect these otherwise unstable species from reaction. IR and UV spectra of the samples, acquired at low temperature, tell us a great deal about the bonding and structures of the products. Finally, we carry out a variety of ab initio and DFT electronic structure calculations to model the structures, spectra, and electronics of these novel molecules.