Department of Chemistry, University of South Florida


Metal organic frameworks (MOFs) have emerged as an important class of porous materials noted for extremely high surface areas, functionalizable building blocks, and ease of synthesis. To date, a plethora of MOFs have now been synthesized and their physical properties examined with a focus on gas storage and separation. The catalytic diversity of MOFs, on the other hand, is emerging as an important area of MOF functionality with photo-catalysis a primary target of investigation. Two general strategies have been employed in the development of MOFs as photo-catalysts. The first utilizes the metal cluster building blocks and/or the ligands composing the framework as the photo-active component of the MOF. These photo-active framework MOFs typically contain lanthanide metal clusters or porphyrin based organic linkers which are both photo-chemically active. Alternatively, recent advances have been made in the development of MOFs in which the ligands connecting the metal clusters are composed of either free base or metallo-porphyrins. The advantages of this type of MOF photo-catalyst include a high density of available catalytic sites, ease of access of photochemical reactants and the ability to tune the framework to be selective...

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Department of Physics and Astronomy,Kinard Laboratory Building,Clemson University


​Emil AlexovElectrostatic forces and energies are one of the major components of the total energy of biological macromolecules. However, computing the electrostatic field distribution in systems made of biological objects immersed in water is not trivial task because of the large degree of freedom associated with the water phase, which in general limits the applications of explicit model to system with sizes smaller than several hundred Angstroms. This problem is avoided by applying continuum electrostatic approaches to deliver the potential distribution, considering that the water and macromolecules are two distinctive dielectric media. Here we report development and implementation in DelPhi of a Gaussian model for atomic densities and its usage to deliver a smooth dielectric function. The performance of the Gaussian DelPhi was benchmarked against solvation energies of small molecules obtained with explicit water simulations and very good agreement was found. The Gaussian DelPhi was also shown to perform much better than standard calculations in delivering the potential distribution is the...

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Jonathan Paul Ligda​Lets congratulate Jonathan Paul Ligda, another nanoscale PhD student, for defending his Ph.D. dissertation, entitiled: "Effects of Grain Size on the Quasi-static Mechanical Properties of Ultrafine-Grain and Nanocrystalline Tantalum". He completed the work under the supervision of Dr. Qiuming Wei (Mechanical Engineering & Engineering Science) and Dr. Brian Schuster (Army Research Laboratory). We wish him all the best for his bright future ahead.

Nanoscale Science - Faculty in Focus

The Poler Research Group consists of students from the Nanoscale Science Ph.D. program, the Optical Science and Engineering Ph.D. program, the Master’s of Science program in Chemistry, Undergraduates from various disciplines (Chemistry, Physics, Biology, Engineering, and Math), and High School students from around the state. We pursue fundamental studies of molecular and nanoscale systems to understand directed and self-assembly processes. We aim to design new particles and materials with higher functionality and effectiveness. Our long-term interests are toward: novel mechanisms for mechanical transducers and sensors in NEMS, energy storage in supercapacitors, catalytic solar fuel production, water purification, and optical metamaterials.