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September, 2018

The Department of Chemistry honored its 2017-18 Outstanding Teaching Assistants and scholars on September 6, 2018.

Both Siri Kanchanakungwankul (Truhlar Group) and Riddhish Umesh Pandharkar (Cramer and Gagliardi Groups) received Honorable Mentions for their outstanding work as Teaching Assistants. Congratulations Siri and Riddhish!

Read more about the awards at the UMN Chemistry Department web site.

Siri (left) and Riddhish (right) receive their awards

August, 2018

Undergraduate researcher Michelle Anderson participated in the Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) program at NIST Boulder. While there, she worked on comparisons of different force fields for viscosity simulations of small molecules. The SURF Program is designed to inspire undergraduate students to pursue careers in STEM through a unique research experience that provides an opportunity to gain valuable, hands-on experience, working with cutting edge technology in one of the world's leading research organizations. Congratulations to Michelle.

It was wonderful having the summer undergraduates participate in the Gagliardi, Truhlar, and Goodpaster groups! On August 10, Jan Kadlec (Charles University, Prague), Hung Vuong (Grinnell College, Grinnell, IA), and Elizabeth Smithwick (Duke University, Durham, NC) successfully completed the 2018 Summer Undergraduate Theoretical Chemistry Research Fellowship sponsored by CTC, ICDC, and NMGC.

Group photo outside Smith Hall


July, 2018

Two members have departed the Gagliardi group in July to begin new professional opportunities. Dr. Andrew Sand will soon start a position at Butler University, and Dr. Soumen Ghosh will begin a postdoctoral position at the Max Planck Institute. We wish them all the best and look forward to following their successes!

The Gagliardi group is excited that the Inorganometallic Catalyst Design Center has received a $12 million grant over four years from the U.S. Department of Energy to continue leading the discovery of a new class of materials used in energy research. Read more on the Department of Chemistry's web site.


June, 2018

On June 22, graduate student Soumen Ghosh (co-advised by Laura Gagliardi and Chris Cramer) successfully defended his doctoral thesis, "Static and Dynamic Charge and Energy Transport in Organic Electronics." Dr. Ghosh will head next to a postdoctoral position at the Max Planck Institute to work with Frank Neese. We wish him all the best as he transitions to his next professional undertaking!

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Dr. Xin-Ping Wu, a postdoctoral scholar working with Don Truhlar and Laura Gagliardi, has proposed that metal–organic frameworks (MOFs) containing cerium would also be good photocatalysts. This work, supported by the Nanoporous Materials Genome Center, shows the power of theory in engineering the electronic properties of functional nanoporous materials. Read more on the Department of Chemistry's web site.

The theory faculty are happy to welcome three undergraduate students to Minnesota as participants in the 2018 Summer Undergraduate Theoretical Chemistry Research Fellowship sponsored by the Chemical Theory Center (CTC), Inorganometallic Catalyst Design Center (ICDC), and the Nanoporous Materials Genome Center (NMGC) within the Department of Chemistry. They are here for 10 weeks (June-August) and will conduct research in theoretical chemistry. Elizabeth Smithwick (Duke University, Durham, NC) is working in the Goodpaster group, Jan Kadlec (Charles University, Prague) is working in the Gagliardi group, and Hung Vuong (Grinnell College, Grinnell, IA) is working in the Truhlar group. Welcome to all of you and we wish you the best with your summer research experience.

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May, 2018

On May 7, Laura Gagliardi received the medal of science academy from the University of Bologna, her Alma Mater.

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Dr. Bess Vlaisavljevich and Dr. Varinia Bernales, two previous members of the Gagliardi group, visited our group on May 25. Dr. Bernales is now assistant professor at the University of South Dakota and Dr. Varinia Bernales has just started working for Dow Chemical Company, in Midland, Michigan. We are very proud of you!

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On May 30, Laura gave a lecture at the ICS Symposium Honoring the 2018 Wolf Prize Laureates in Chemistry. During the symposium she was admitted to Honorary Membership of the Israel Chemical Society.


April, 2018

Laura has been honored with a prestigious Humboldt Research Award from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, which will enable her to conduct research with scientists in Germany in 2019. Read more on the Department of Chemistry's web site.

Thais Scott, first-year graduate student, is one of six students honored through the National Science Foundation's Graduate Research Fellowship Program. This is quite an accomplishment! Read more on the Department of Chemistry's web site.


March, 2018

The Nanoporous Materials Genome Center (NMGC), a multi-institution collaboration led by the University of Minnesota, received a four-year continuation of its funding, effective September 1, 2017. Laura is the founding Director of NMGC and continues as a member of the Center. Read the full article on the Department web site.

Some of the most recent research of the Inorganometallic Catalyst Design Center, including that of Laura (Director) and Chris Cramer (co-PI), is highlighted on the Department of Chemistry's News page.

The collaborative work, an article titled "C–H Bond Activation on Bimetallic Two-Atom Co-M Oxide Clusters Deposited on Zr-Based MOF Nodes: Effects of Doping at the Molecular Level," of several members of the University of Minnesota's Inorganometallic Catalyst Design Center (ICDC) was recently featured in the journal, ACS Catalysis. To read more, and for related links, see the piece on the Department of Chemistry's web site.


February, 2018

The group welcomes Matthew Hermes, most recently a postdoc in the Scuseria Group at Rice University in Houston, TX, as a postdoc.

WooSeok Jeong, most recently of the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, has joined the group as a postdoc.


January, 2018

On January 29-31, Laura, grad student Matt Simons, and postdocs Jenny Vitillo and Jingyun Ye attended the New Challenges in Heterogeneous Catalysis conference at KAUST. Laura gave a talk on "Computationally Guided Discovery of Metal-Decorated Metal–Organic Frameworks Active for Catalysis," and Jingyun won one of the prizes at the poster competition with a poster titled "Computational Study of MOF-Supported Metal Catalysts for Ethylene Dimerization." Read more on the Department of Chemistry's web site.

Former graduate student Chad Hoyer has accepted a postdoctoral position in the research group of Xiaosong Li in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Washington. Great news!


November, 2017

Undergraduate Sunny Zheng is a recipient of a University of Minnesota Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) grant for spring 2018. Her project is titled "Effect of Electron Correlation in Modeling the Ground and Excited-State Geometries of Ozone and the Reaction Mechanism of the Cope Rearrangement."


Graduate student Sam Stoneburner is one of four finalists in the 2017 Dow Chemical SISCA (Sustainability Innovation Student Challenge Award) competition. SISCA recognizes and rewards student innovation and research on sustainable solutions to the world's most pressing social, economic and environmental problems. Read more about the award on the Department of Chemistry's web site.


The group welcomes three first-year graduate students: Riddhish Umesh Pandharkar, Thais Scott, and Jacob White. Thais and Jacob are advised by Laura, and Riddhish is co-advised by Laura and Chris Cramer. We are glad to have you with us.


Laura is part of a multi-institution team led by the University of Notre Dame that has been awarded a grant by the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), the Actinide Center of Excellence (ACE), to conduct research in actinide and nuclear chemistry. You can read more on the Department of Chemistry's web site. Some members of the group are pictured, below, in the Group lab.

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Postdoc Andrew Sand is the author of the November 7 Los Angeles Times crossword puzzle. It is not just Andrew's scientific papers that get published! See the puzzle.


October, 2017

A "Viewpoint on the 2017 American Conference on Theoretical Chemistry," published in J. Phys. Chem. A, discusses the latest efforts of the Gagliardi group. Read more.


September, 2017

Welcome to four undergraduates, joining the group for Fall 2017: Molly Andersen, Michelle Anderson, Yesenia Vega, and Sunny Zheng.

The Inorganometallic Catalyst Design Center (ICDC) held its annual meeting on September 11-12, at the St. Paul Hotel. Several members of the group are members of the ICDC; Laura is the Director. For information on the ICDC, click here.

On September 15, graduate student Chad Hoyer (co-advised by Laura and Don Truhlar) successfully defended his thesis, "Electronic Structure Method Development for Excited-State Chemistry." He is currently exploring postdoctoral opportunities. Congratulations, Chad!

Laura has been elected to the World Association of Theoretical and Computational Chemists (WATOC) Board. Read more on the Department of Chemistry's web site.


August, 2017

Postdoc Varinia Bernales has received a travel grant to present her research at the 254th American Chemical Society National Meeting and Exposition in Washington, D.C., August 20-24, 2017. Congratulations, Varinia! Read more on the Department of Chemistry's web site.


July, 2017

On July 7, the Gagliardi and Cramer groups met in a friendly bowling competition at Memory Lanes in Minneapolis (organized by group member Hung Pham). By a very small margin, the Gagliardi group was victorious. Thanks for organizing this, Hung.

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The University of Minnesota's Inorganometallic Catalyst Design Center (ICDC), the Minnesota Supercomputing Institute, and the Chemical Theory Center (CTC), along with the Theoretical Chemistry Group of the University of Torino, Italy, co-hosted The Minnesota Workshop, ab Initio Modeling in Solid State Chemistry with CRYSTAL, from July 9-14, at Minnesota. CRYSTAL is a computational tool for solid state chemistry and physics. Read more about the workshop and the software, and see photos of the participants on the Department of Chemistry's web site.

A poster session was held on Wednesday, July 12, as part of the CRYSTAL workshop. Five winners were chosen: Sara Dampf of Syracuse University (second from right), Tae Yun Kim of Seoul National University (South Korea) (not pictured), Duwage Perera of the University of Maine (far right), Stefano Racioppi of the Università degli Studi di Milano (Italy) (third from right), and Gagliardi group member Jingyun Ye (third from left). Also pictured: Laura Gagaliardi (far left) and Lorenzo Maschio, (University of Turin (Italy) (second from left). Congratulations to the winners!

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Congratulations to Rebecca Carlson, who successfully defended her Ph.D. thesis, titled "A Study of Metal-Metal Bonds and Multiconfiguration Pair-Density Functional Theory," on July 28. She is considering several options for her future, including postdoctoral positions or a position in industry. We wish her the best.

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Jenny G. Vitillo, Laura Gagliardi, and Berend Smit (EPF Lausanne) were the guest editors of a special issue of Chemical Review on “Carbon Capture and Separation.” The July 26 cover of Chemical Review, designed by Jenny, features the multipronged strategy envisaged to divert the trend in the terrestrial average temperature on time to keep it under the limit of 1.5 °C. Great work!

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June, 2017

From June 1-9, Laura was on a lecture tour in the United Kingdom for the RSC Bourke award that she received in 2016. She gave lectures at Imperial College London, at the University of Sheffield, at the Faraday Discussion on New Directions in Porous Crystalline Materials in Edinburgh, and at the University of Southampton.

The theory faculty are happy to welcome four undergraduate students to Minnesota as participants in the first Chemical Theory Center/Inorganometallic Catalyst Design Center summer program within the Department of Chemistry. They are here for 10 weeks (June-August) and will conduct research in theoretical chemistry. Katherine Kidder (Franklin & Marshall College, Lancaster, PA) is working in the Gagliardi group, under postdoc Andrew Sand, on multiconfiguration pair-density function theory; Hirbod Heidari (Sharif University, Tehran) is working in Don Truhlar’s group; Jason Goodpaster is advising Hunter Wilson (James Madison University, Harrisonburg, PA), and Qining Wang (Rutgers University) is part of Chris Cramer's group. Welcome to all of you and we wish you the best with your summer research experience.

Fourth-year grad student Soumen Ghosh is one of seven graduate students selected by the Department of Chemistry for a Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship for the 2017-18 academic year. Soumen is co-advised by Laura Gagliardi and Chris Cramer. Congratulations, Soumen! Read more on the Department of Chemistry web site.


May, 2017

Graduate student Sam Stoneburner's recent paper, "Catechol-Ligated Transition Metals: A Quantum Chemical Study on a Promising System for Gas Separation", was selected as the cover feature for the latest issue of the Journal of Physical Chemistry C: Link.

Postdoc Varinia Bernales has been honored with one of two Wiley/ACS Computers in Chemistry Outstanding PostDoc Awards. From the award notification: "This award is a testimony of the high impact and quality of your research, and, as future leaders in the field, you are going to contribute in shaping the computational chemistry of the future." Read more on the Department of Chemistry web site. This is quite an accomplishment!

Undergraduate researcher Molly Andersen has received two fellowships: from the Department of Chemistry, the David A. and Merece H. Johnson Scholarship "for outstanding achievement in undergraduate research as well as overall scholastic excellence," and from the School of Physics and Astronomy, the Hagstrum Award in Physics, which "is awarded to a senior in physics showing excellence and promise in their chosen field." Congratulations to Molly.

The Inorganometallic Catalyst Design Center (ICDC), a U.S. Department of Energy-sponsored Energy Frontier Research Center (EFRC). is based at the University of Minnesota. Recently, a video showcasing the important work of the ICDC was produced. You can view it from the ICDC web site's home page.


April, 2017

As part of The American Chemical Society (ACS) 253rd NATIONAL MEETING & EXPOSITION on Advanced Materials, Technologies, Systems & Processes, April 2-6, 2017, in San Francisco, there was a Women in COMP breakfast on Tuesday, April 4. This was a mentorship opportunity for female postdoctoral scholars. In addition to this special program, Laura Gagliardi and Gagliardi group postdoc Jing Xie gave several talks at ACS.

A paper co-authored by postdoc Jing Xie and graduate student Debmalya Ray, published in the journal Nature Chemistry on April 24, was featured on the Department of Chemistry's web site (also on April 24). To read the article and for a link to the paper, click here.

The group welcomes new postdoc Jenny Vitillo, from Università di Torino (University of Turin), Italy. She is co-advised by Laura Gagliardi and UMN Chemistry faculty member Connie Lu. We are happy to have you here, Jenny.


March, 2017

The group welcomes visiting postdoctoral scholar Walter A. Rabanal León of the Department of Chemistry at Universidad Andrés Bello, Santiago, Chile, where he is a member of the Millennium Nucleus Molecular Engineering for Catalysis and Biosensors group.


February, 2017

The group welcomes three new members: postdoc Davide Presti, who comes to Minnesota from the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Modena, Italy, University of Minnesota undergraduate researcher Michelle Anderson, and postdoc Carlo Gaggioli from Università degli Studi di Perugia, Perugia, Italy.


January, 2017

Second-year graduate students Prachi Sharma and Hung Pham passed their preliminary examinations. Congratulations to both!


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Department of Chemistry

207 Pleasant Street SE, Minneapolis, MN, 55902

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