Sub-Nano Cluster Materials: Motors, Catalysts, and More

Seminar series
Physical Chemistry Seminar
Mon, Oct 1 4:00pm
2033 Young Hall, UCLA
Speaker Prof. Anastassia N. Alexandrova
University of California, Los Angeles
Dept. of Chemistry & Biochemistry
Sub-Nano Cluster Materials: Motors, Catalysts, and More

Small clusters of main group elements and transition metals represent one of the last frontiers of
inorganic chemistry. Their stabilities, shapes, and properties are often remarkable, but depend counter-
intuitively and nonlinearly on cluster size and composition, to the point that any exploitation of them in
applications requires serendipitous brute-force searches for suitable clusters. In this talk, we will use the
qualitative language of chemical bonding, with new developments specific to clusters, as a theoretical
tool of rational cluster design. We will address calculations of selected clusters, in conjunction with
related spectroscopic experiments, both in the gas phase and supported on surfaces of oxides. New
concepts of chemical bonding in clusters will be introduced, and we will demonstrate their utility as
knobs for the design of clusters with desired shapes and functionalities, including cluster wheels, photo-
driven molecular motors, and catalysts. Our new theoretical methods developed for cluster studies
(finding their global minima, analysis of chemical bonding, and assessing the behavior of deposited
clusters under realistic conditions such as at high temperatures and interfacing with solvent/gas) will be
discussed as well.

Refreshments will be available before the seminars
Contact: Carol Verduzco at (310) 206-4956 or for more information