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Biologically inspired catalysts being developed

Date:
April 20, 2011
Source:
New Jersey Institute of Technology
Summary:
A research team is developing biologically-inspired catalysts. The work is based on organic catalytic framework made sturdy by the replacement of carbon-hydrogen bonds with a combination of aromatic and aliphatic carbon-fluorine bonds.
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NJIT Associate Professor Sergiu M. Gorun is leading a research team to develop biologically-inspired catalysts. The work is based on organic catalytic framework made sturdy by the replacement of carbon-hydrogen bonds with a combination of aromatic and aliphatic carbon-fluorine bonds. Graduate students involved with this research recently received first place recognition at the annual NJIT Dana Knox student research showcase.

The newest focus of Gorun's research has been the cobalt complex as a catalyst for which the known degradation pathways appear to have been suppressed. Their work appeared recently online in Dalton Transactions. Similar to a previous publication, this recent one addresses an important industrial process, the "sweetening" of petroleum products by the transformation of smelly and corrosive thiols into disulfides. The extreme electronic deficiency of the new catalyst metal center allows it to process molecules that are not reactive in the presence of regular catalysts that perform this chemistry industrially.

Two years ago Gorun and his team reported that the related zinc perfluoroalkylated phthalocyanine, a molecule resembling the porphyrin core of several heme enzymes, exhibit highly-efficient photochemical oxygenation of an organic substrate. This was of great interest to the fragrance industry.

Concurrently, the unusual properties of Gorun's new materials are explored in parallel in constructing surface coatings, an area in which Gorun was awarded US patent 7,670,684. Several publications describe the properties of the new coatings.

The Department of Defense and National Science Foundation have supported this work. Gorun will be an invited speaker in a symposium about advances in phthalocyanines and related macrocycles to be held July of 2012 at the 7th International Conference on Porphyrins and Phthalocyanines, held in Jeju Island, South Korea.


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Materials provided by New Jersey Institute of Technology. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Andrei Loas, Robert Gerdes, Yongyi Zhang, Sergiu M. Gorun. Broadening the reactivity spectrum of a phthalocyanine catalyst while suppressing its nucleophilic, electrophilic and radical degradation pathways. Dalton Transactions, 2011; DOI: 10.1039/C1DT10458F

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New Jersey Institute of Technology. "Biologically inspired catalysts being developed." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 April 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110419151453.htm>.
New Jersey Institute of Technology. (2011, April 20). Biologically inspired catalysts being developed. ScienceDaily. Retrieved May 21, 2024 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110419151453.htm
New Jersey Institute of Technology. "Biologically inspired catalysts being developed." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110419151453.htm (accessed May 21, 2024).

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