SCHOOL OF CHEMISTRY HONOURS PROJECTS 2021 - MONASH SCIENCE - Monash University

 
SCHOOL OF CHEMISTRY HONOURS PROJECTS 2021 - MONASH SCIENCE - Monash University
MONASH
                    SCIENCE

SCHOOL OF CHEMISTRY

 HONOURS PROJECTS

       2021

                              0
SCHOOL OF CHEMISTRY HONOURS PROJECTS 2021 - MONASH SCIENCE - Monash University
Table of Contents

Introduction ............................................................................................................................... 3

Professor Phil Andrews ............................................................................................................ 4

Professor Stuart Batten ............................................................................................................ 5

Dr Toby Bell .............................................................................................................................. 6

Dr Cameron Bentley ................................................................................................................. 7

Dr Victoria Blair......................................................................................................................... 8

Professor Alan Chaffee ............................................................................................................ 9

Professor Philip Chan ............................................................................................................. 10

Professor Perran Cook ........................................................................................................... 11

Professor Glen Deacon .......................................................................................................... 12

Dr Alison Funston ................................................................................................................... 13

Associate Professor Mike Grace ............................................................................................ 14

Dr Joel Hooper ....................................................................................................................... 15

Professor Cameron Jones...................................................................................................... 16

Dr Kamila Kochan................................................................................................................... 17

Professor Tanja Junkers ........................................................................................................ 18

Dr Sara Kyne .......................................................................................................................... 19

Professor David W. Lupton .................................................................................................... 20

Professor Doug MacFarlane .................................................................................................. 21

Dr Shahnaz Mansouri ............................................................................................................. 22

Professor Philip Marriott ......................................................................................................... 23

Associate Professor Lisa Martin ............................................................................................. 24

                                                                                                                                                 1.   1
SCHOOL OF CHEMISTRY HONOURS PROJECTS 2021 - MONASH SCIENCE - Monash University
Professor Keith Murray ........................................................................................................... 25

Associate Professor Ekaterina (Katya) Pas ........................................................................... 26

Dr Brett Paterson .................................................................................................................... 27

Professor Tony Patti ............................................................................................................... 28

Dr Chris Ritchie ...................................................................................................................... 29

Professor Andrea Robinson ................................................................................................... 30

Dr Alexandr Simonov.............................................................................................................. 31

Associate Professor Rico Tabor ............................................................................................. 32

Professor San Thang.............................................................................................................. 33

Associate Professor Chris Thompson .................................................................................... 34

Associate Professor Kellie Tuck ............................................................................................. 35

Dr David Turner ...................................................................................................................... 36

Dr Drasko Vidovic ................................................................................................................... 37

Professor Bayden Wood ........................................................................................................ 38

Associate ProfessorJie Zhang................................................................................................ 39

Dr Angela Ziebell .................................................................................................................... 40

Industrial Projects

Biofuel Innovations Several Industry Research Project Options ........................................... 41

Fire Resistance in Polyisocyanurate Foams for Use in Insulated Panels ............................. 42

CSIRO Project

Assessing and validating low cost greenhouse gas sensor technology........................... 43

                                                                                                                                             2.   2
SCHOOL OF CHEMISTRY HONOURS PROJECTS 2021 - MONASH SCIENCE - Monash University
INTRODUCTION - Honours 2021
This booklet is intended to provide an overview of the research activities within the
School of Chemistry and to give you an indication of the Honours projects that will be
offered in 2021. You are encouraged to study these and to speak with the research
supervisors. This research project makes up 75% of the final mark for the Honours year,
with the other 25% from the coursework component which runs in first semester.

Current third year students are eligible to do Chemistry Honours (Clayton) in 2021
provided that they fulfil the entry requirements and that a supervisor is available.

Students will be allocated to supervisors and projects on the basis of their third year
results and their preferred projects. Great care is taken to ensure that all students are
treated equitably and where possible that they are be allocated to the area and
supervisor of their choice.

All Honours candidates must discuss prospective projects with at least four supervisors
before choosing their preferred project. They should then select at least three potential
supervisors and projects in order of preference. The application forms – one for
Honours entry which is an on-line link from the Faculty of Science, the other is the
project nomination form which is from the School of Chemistry – are both available on
the School of Chemistry Honours web page.

Please note that the project descriptions are quite short, and more comprehensive
details can be obtained when speaking to supervisors.

We look forward to seeing you in the Honours course next year. Please contact me if
you have any questions about the Honours year!

Assoc. Prof Mike Grace
Honours Coordinator
Room G25c/19 School of Chemistry, 9905 4078, email: Michael.Grace@monash.edu

                                                                                            3.   3
SCHOOL OF CHEMISTRY HONOURS PROJECTS 2021 - MONASH SCIENCE - Monash University
Professor Phil Andrews
Room No. 121N, Tel: 9905 5509, email: phil.andrews@.monash.edu

This document gives you an idea of the type of research we are undertaking within my group. If
you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact me (details above).
                       More information on my research can be seen at:
             http://monash.edu/science/about/schools/chemistry/staff/Andrews.html

1.     Combating multi-drug resistant bacteria with metal complexes (Bi vs Fe vs
       Ga)
       (with Prof. Ross Coppel, Microbiology)

       In tackling the continued growth in multi-resistant bacteria and the increasing rate of antibiotic
       resistance, this project focuses on the development of bismuth(III) and gallium(III) compounds
       which show high activities against common and resistant strains of bacteria (eg MRSA, VRE). Read
       more: Chem. Eur. J., 2014, DOI: 10.1002/chem.201404109.

2.     Development of new bismuth and gallium based anti-Leishmanial drugs
       (with Dr Lukasz Kedzierski, Peter Doherty Institute, University of Melbourne)

       Leishmaniasis is a parasitic infection prevalent in the developing world. Current frontline drugs are
       based on Sb(V) compounds which show severe side-effects and for which resistance has begun
       to appear.      This project focuses on developing and testing new bismuth and gallium
       compounds as more active and less         toxic alternatives. Read more: Dalton Trans., 2018, 47,
       971 – 980. DOI: 10.1039/C7DT04171C

3.     Developing new antimicrobial materials and coatings
       (with Dr. Warren Batchelor, Chemical Engineering; Prof. Laurence Meagher, Monash Institute of
       Medical Engineering)
       This project investigates the formation of novel bismuth(III) complexes which have high
       antimicrobial activity and their incorporation into natural and synthetic polymers and materials.
       The antimicrobial activities of the new materials and their potential as ‘clean surfaces’ will be
       assessed. Read more: Chem. Eur. J., 2018, 24, 1 – 13. DOI: 10.1002/chem.201801803

4.     Targeting Novel Chiral Heterobimetallic Main Group Complexes
       (with Dr. Victoria Blair)

       This project involves the design, synthesis and full characterization of novel chiral hetero-di-anionic
       and hetero-bimetallic complexes of alkali metal, and d or p-block elements (eg. Zn, Cu, Al, Ga, In,
       Sn, Sb), and subsequent examination of their reactivity and selectivity in asymmetric synthesis and
       in the formation of unusually substituted heterocycles. Requires inert atmosphere handling
       techniques.          Read           more:            Organometallics, 2018, 37,            1225–1228.
       DOI: 10.1021/acs.organomet.8b00047

5.     Heterobimetallic Compounds, Cages and Nanoparticles for Radiation
       Sensitisation
       (with Dr Melissa Werrett; Prof Leoni.Kunz-Schughart, National Center for Radiation Research in
       Oncology, TU-Dresden)

       Radiation therapy (RT) is a common form of cancer treatment, however the resistance of tumour
       cells    to RT is a serious concern. One way to enhance damage to tumour cells is to employ radio-
       sensitisers.      These are molecules, cages or nanoparticles which can increase the radio-
       sensitivity of tumour cells        and therefore the effectiveness of the treatment. This project will
       explore the design and development          of mixed heavy metal compounds and an assessment of
       their potential as radio-sensitisers for tumour cell        depletion. Background reading: Trends
       in Pharmacological Sciences, 2018, 39, 24-48

                                                                                                            4.   4
SCHOOL OF CHEMISTRY HONOURS PROJECTS 2021 - MONASH SCIENCE - Monash University
Professor Stuart Batten
Room No. 121C, Building 19, Tel: 9905 4606, email: stuart.batten@monash.edu

This document will give you an idea of the type of research we are undertaking within my group.
If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact me (details above).
                      More information on my research can be seen at:
          http://monash.edu/science/about/schools/chemistry/staff/sbatten/index.html

Coordination Polymers and Supramolecules
We are designing and making coordination polymers (sometimes also known as metal-organic
frameworks, or MOFs) and supramolecular species for a variety of interesting applications,
including adsorption of gases such as hydrogen (for hydrogen fuelled cars) and carbon dioxide
(greenhouse gas capture), long or short range magnetic ordering, molecular switching (for
information storage or molecular sensing), and as new materials for molecular separations. We
are pursuing a number of approaches to this, including:
        • New classes of bridging ligands in which the bridging length can be controlled by the
presence or nature of e.g. group I or II metals (Chem. Commun., 2009, 5579).
        • Large (3 nm in diameter) spherical
supramolecules (or ‘nanoballs’) (Angew. Chem. Int.
Ed. 2009, 48, 2549 & 8919; ChemPlusChem 2012, 77,
616) which show a large variety of properties. For
example, they can switch between two magnetic spin
states. The change may be induced by change in
temperature or, as a series of experiments in
Bordeaux, France showed, irradiation of light. The
molecular packing also creates cavities within the solid
state, and thus the crystals will readily absorb solvent
vapours, hydrogen, and CO2. Finally, the nanoballs
also show catalytic activity.
        • Incorporation of amine groups into porous
MOFs in order to increase the selectivity of CO2
sorption over other gases, such as N2. This is part of a
large multi-institutional program focussed on
developing MOFs for “real world” CO2 capture.
        • Porous MOFs for the chromatographic separation of molecules based on size, chirality
or other chemical features. Surprisingly little work has been done in this field, and we are
currently exploring this potential in depth (Chem. Commun. 2014, 50, 3735).

Chemistry of Small Cyano Anions
We have been investigating the chemistry of small cyano anions (Chem. Commun. 2011, 47,
10189). They have shown some remarkable chemistry, including the synthesis of a large range
of transition metal and/or lanthanoid clusters which may have applications as single molecule
magnets, interesting new coordination polymers and discrete complexes showing unusual
packing motifs and ligand binding modes, new hydrogen bonding solid state networks,
nucleophilic addition of alcohols and amines across the nitrile groups to give new anion families,
and the production of ionic liquids containing either the free anions or even metal complexes of
the anions. The versatility and range of applications of these simple anions is unprecedented.

                                                                                                5.   5
SCHOOL OF CHEMISTRY HONOURS PROJECTS 2021 - MONASH SCIENCE - Monash University
Dr Toby Bell
Room G32C, Building 23S, Tel: 69905 4566, email: toby.bell@monash.edu
In the Bell Fluorescence Lab, we apply advanced fluorescence techniques to answer questions
in materials science and cell biology. In most of our research we operate at the ultimate level of
resolution – single molecules – which allows us to detect hidden events and distributions.
Application of single molecule detection allows us to perform super-resolution imaging and break
the diffraction limit of light to reveal previously obscured details, even inside cells.
                    www.super-resolution.org.au Instagram: Bell_Fluorescence

Visualising cellular remodelling caused by viral proteins:
Viruses have developed all kinds of mechanisms for hijacking cellular
systems for their own needs, as well as for avoiding the immune
response. This project will use super-resolution imaging to examine
changes to the cellular architecture in order to decipher the functions of
proteins made by viruses like Rabies and Hendra. (The image shows                              2 μm
microtubules forming large bundles in the presence of rabies P protein)
Deciphering the photophysics of antibody-conjugated fluorophores for bio-imaging:
Alexa and ATTO dyes bound to antibodies are used extensively in biological imaging applications
because of their high specificity and bright, stable fluorescence. Recently, the seconds-long
‘blinking’ of these dyes has been harnessed for super resolution imaging. While the photophysics
behind blinking has been well characterized for individual molecules, this project will investigate
the photophysical interactions available, such as energy funnelling and annihilation, to the
clusters of ~4-6 fluorophores on each antibody.
                         Investigating      DNA    damage response            in    sub-nuclear
                         compartments:
                         When the cell senses a DNA double strand break, a signaling cascade
                         involving thousands of proteins is triggered. Recently, a new pathway
                         within this cascade was discovered to involve recruitment of protein
                         NBS1 to the nucleolus where it affects ribosomal RNA transcription.
                         This project will use super-resolution imaging to directly visualize the
                         proteins involved in nucleolar sub-compartments to determine the
                         underlying mechanism and its interplay with other DNA damage
response pathways. (The image shows Treacle protein ‘puncta’ inside the nucleolus)
Imaging DNA double strand breaks and their repair in cells:
DNA damage is caused by exogenous toxins as well as everyday
replication and transcription. Defects in repair result in serious genetic
diseases and can lead to cancer. However, imaging of damage and
repair inside cells is incredibly difficult because only a few breaks occur
at a time. This project will use multicolor super resolution imaging to
focus on these few breaks and track the temporal interactions involved
in their (mis)repair..
                           Quantifying orientation in FRET at the single molecule level:
                           The orientation of the donor and acceptor molecules in energy transfer
                           (FRET), can efficiency up to a factor of 4, but has never been shown
                           directly in single molecules. This project will visualize emission dipoles
                           of single molecules undergoing FRET by using ‘defocused imaging’ of
                           single molecules and simultaneously measuring FRET efficiency. The
                           defocused images reveal a molecule’s dipole directly and thus its
                           orientation. (The image shows defocused patterns for 2 single
                           molecules about 3 microns apart)

                                                                                                   6.   6
SCHOOL OF CHEMISTRY HONOURS PROJECTS 2021 - MONASH SCIENCE - Monash University
Dr Cameron Bentley
Room to be confirmed, Tel: tbc, email: cameron.bentley@monash.edu
My research centres on the use of glass nanopipettes (see Fig. 1) to “see”
the nanoscale active sites of electrodes during operation, through high-
resolution electrochemical microscopy. Relating electrochemical activity on
this scale to the underlying electrode surface structure guides the
design/synthesis of the “next-generation” of materials with higher activity,
                                                                                  Fig. 1. TEM image of a
improved stability, longer cycle life etc. If the two Honours projects below      nanopipette probe. The
are of interest to you, or if you have any further queries, please do not         probe “tip” is ≈30 nm.
hesitate to contact me.
(1) Nanoscale Reaction Imaging of Water-Splitting Electrodes
Electrochemical water-splitting is recognised to be one of the most promising approaches to store renewable
energy in the form of hydrogen fuel. Commercially feasible water electrolysis requires the use of highly stable
                                            and active electrodes, known as electrocatalysts, to overcome the
                                            high energy barrier(s) associated with water-splitting. Electrode
                                            structure and composition strongly dictate the kinetics and
                                            mechanisms of electrocatalytic processes, and thus there is a
                                            great need for techniques that can that can probe electrochemical
                                            activity at the scale of surface heterogeneities, e.g., from single
                                            defects to the individual grains and grain boundaries of a
                                            polycrystal. In this project, the Honours Candidate will develop
                                            and implement a state-of-the-art electrochemical microscopy
                                            platform—the first of its kind in Australia—to probe the nanoscale
                                            electrochemistry of promising water-splitting electrodes, in order
                                            to reveal catalytic active sites directly and unambiguously (e.g.,
  Fig. 2. Topography and water-splitting    Fig. 2, adapted from: J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2017, 139, 46, 16813–
  activity maps, obtained on MoS2,          16821).
 showing edge-plane activity.

(2) Single Nanoparticle Electrochemistry: from Electrocatalysts to Battery Materials
Over the past three decades, the whole of science has been impacted
massively by the revolution in nanoscience. For example, nanoparticles
(NPs) have found many applications in electrochemistry, such as the
noble metal (e.g., Pt) electrocatalysts used in fuel cells or the metal oxide
cathode materials (e.g., LiMn2O4) used in lithium-ion batteries. Elemental
composition and surface structure strongly influence NP reactivity,
meaning that at the single NP level there can be large functional
variations between apparently similar particles due to small differences
in size, surface faceting, defects etc. Thus, with the widespread uptake of
NPs in electrochemistry and beyond, there is a great demand for
techniques that can answer the fundamental question: what is the
relationship between structure/composition, and electrochemical
activity at the single particle level? In this project, the Honours Candidate
will address this important question by developing and implementing a         Fig. 3. CVs obtained from
state-of-the-art nanoelectrochemistry platform—the first of its kind in       single LiMn2O4 particles
                                                                              (scale = 200 nm).
Australia—to probe the structure−activity of individual NPs supported on
an electrode surface (e.g., Fig. 3, adapted from: Angew. Chem. 2019, 131, 4654 –4659).

                                                                                                             7.   7
SCHOOL OF CHEMISTRY HONOURS PROJECTS 2021 - MONASH SCIENCE - Monash University
Dr Victoria Blair
Room No. 118, Building 23, Tel: 99020907, email: victoria.blair@.monash.edu

This document will give you an idea of the type of research we are undertaking within my group. If you
have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact me (details above).

                                                                                                         8.   8
SCHOOL OF CHEMISTRY HONOURS PROJECTS 2021 - MONASH SCIENCE - Monash University
Professor ALAN CHAFFEE
Room No. 223N, Tel: 9905 4626, email: alan.chaffee@monash.edu

My group undertakes applied chemistry research on topics that are, in some way, related to biomass and
fossil resource utilization. For example, new approaches to the preparation of industrial chemicals, specialty
liquid fuels (eg, jet fuel), road bitumen, coke for steel making, and specialist high surface area active
carbons are being developed so as to minimize energy losses and CO2 emissions. We also investigate the
capture of CO2 emissions by adsorption and, once captured, its transformation back into useful products by
heterogeneous catalysis. In doing so, innovative new materials such as mesoporous silicas, metal organic
frameworks (MOFs) and ionic liquids (ILs) are employed as adsorbents, catalysts and/or solvents. These
novel materials are often sourced from other research groups within the School. Molecular modeling tools
are also frequently applied in these studies, so that experiment and theory inform each other. More
information on my research can be found at:
                 http://monash.edu/science/about/schools/chemistry/staff/CHAFFEE.html

Turning Carbon Dioxide into Fuel
Waste CO2, when combined with ‘renewable H2’ (eg, from photovoltaic
water splitting) over appropriate catalysts, leads to hydrocarbon products
(methane and higher hydrocarbons, formaldehyde, methanol) which can
be directly used as fuel or chemical feedstocks. We are thermally
transforming metal organic framework (MOF) precursors to produce
nanoparticulate catalysts of varying metal cluster size, supported on
carbonaceous ribbons that seek to provide exceptionally high reaction
rates and selectivity to these products.

Capturing Carbon Dioxide from Air
Prior work in the group has identified amine-based adsorbents that have the ability
to reversibly capture and release CO2 at concentrations (~15 wt%) and
temperatures typical of the flue gas from power stations. Another approach to
controlling CO2 in the atmosphere could be to adsorb it directly from air at
atmospheric concentration (~400 ppm). This project will prepare and evaluate new
adsorbent formulations for this purpose involving high surface area mesoporous
silica (such as SBA-15) as a support material.

Environmental Applications of Active Carbon Monoliths
The group has recently developed a new form of monolithic carbon, derived from
brown coal, that provides for efficient gas and liquid contact with low pressure drop.
These materials have exceptional surface areas and, therefore, multiple potential
applications as adsorbents, catalysts, electrodes, etc. Their inherent electrically
conductive means that they can, in principal, be very efficiently regenerated by ohmic
                                                                                              Active Carbon
heating. Projects are available that investigate their performance for the removal of
                                                                                                Monolith
pollutants from gas phase (e.g., NOx) or from liquid phase (e.g., heavy metal) streams,
their regenerability, as well as optimization of fabrication methods.

Quantum Dot Medicine (Collaboration with Assoc Prof Lisa Martin)
In recent work we have demonstrated that carbon quantum dots (CQDs), prepared from
brown coal, can mitigate against the types of protein aggregation that are associated
with Alzheimer’s disease and Type 2 diabetes. This project will prepare a series of
CQDs with varied surface functionality with a view to determining how varied
chemical composition effects aggregation rates.                                              CQDs prevention
                                                                                              of fibrilisation

                                                                                                            9.   9
Professor Philip Chan
Room No. 243A, School of Chemistry, Building 23, Tel: 9905 1337, email: phil.chan@monash.edu

We are an organic chemistry group focused on the discovery and
understanding of new and sustainable reactions through the power of
homogeneous catalysis and their application to the synthesis of
bioactive natural products and functional materials. More information
can       be       obtained       from      Philip       and       at:
https://www.monash.edu/science/schools/chemistry/our-
people/staff/professor-philip-wai-hong-chan

Transition Metal Catalysis: New Strategies for Natural
Products Synthesis and Drug Discovery

Homogeneous transition metal catalysis is one of the most powerful and stereoselective synthetic tools in
the chemist’s armory for the assembly of highly functionalized, architecturally complex molecules from
readily accessible precursors in a single step. For example, a new area in the field of gold catalysis realised
by our group explored the novel reactivities of vinyl gold carbenoid species I as well as those of allenylgold
intermediates II. As part of an ongoing program
in this area of transition metal catalysis, we will
this year focus on the recent new discoveries from
the lab in photoredox catalysis driven by a
gold(I,I) complex and sunlight or a blue LED
source, which is currently a hot topic in research.
The goal will be to realise new reactivities,
develop new catalysts along the way and provide
mechanistic insights into these novel synthetic
technologies. A number of Honours projects that
explore this new area of catalysis are available.
Key references: see references in the Figure and
our reviews: 1) Day, D. P.; Chan, P. W. H. Adv.
Synth. Catal. 2016, 358, 1368; 2) Boyle, J. W.;
Zhao, Y.; Chan, P. W. H. Synthesis 2018, 1402.
Organocatalysis:            Unleashing          the
Enantioselective Potential of Chiral Brønsted Acids
                                                         One of the most powerful catalytic methods to
                                                         emerge over the last two decades to rapidly achieve
                                                         molecular complexity in an enantioselective
                                                         manner from readily accessible precursors is
                                                         organocatalysis. Our interest in the organocatalytic
                                                         reaction chemistry of π-rich alcohols is driven by
                                                         the ease of substrate preparation providing the
                                                         possibility to introduce a wide variety of
                                                         substituents. Added to this is the potential
                                                         formation of water as the only byproduct that makes
                                                         it a highly attractive environmentally sustainable
                                                         and atom-economical approach. A recent example
                                                         of this strategy is a seminal work by us revealing
                                                         the first chiral Brønsted acid catalysed dehydrative
                                                         Nazarov-type dehydrative electrocyclisation of
                                                         aryl- and 2-thiophenyl-β -amino-2-en-1-ols to 1H-
indenes and 4H-cyclopenta[b]thiophenes. A number of Honours projects that explore this new area of
catalysis are available. Key references: see references in the Figure and our review: Ayers, B. J.; Chan, P.
W. H. Synlett 2015, 1305.

                                                                                                           10.    10
Associate Professor Perran Cook
Room No. 19/G25a, Tel: 9905 54091, email: perran.cook@.monash.edu
More information on my research can be seen at:
http://monash.edu/science/about/schools/chemistry/staff/cook/

Sand sediments dominate our coastline, yet we have little understanding of how this environment
processes human emissions of nutrients.

Novel metabolic pathways of lipid and hydrogen production in sands
Sands are highly dynamic environments and organisms within this environment must cope with
rapid shifts between oxic and anoxic conditions. We have recently discovered that fermentation
dominates anoxic metabolism in these sediments but the pathways remain unknown. We
hypothesise that a carbon storage mechanism using polyhydroxyalkanoates is taking place. This
project will investigate the pathways of microbial metabolism in sands using a combination of
experiments and metabolite profiling using GC/MS

Figure shows oxygen distribution within a sand ripple. Organisms within this environment
must cope with rapid shifts in oxygen concentrations.

Denitrification pathways
Denitrification is a key reaction in the environment because it removes excess bioavailable
nitrogen. Nitrous oxide is a key intermediate in the process and is a powerful greenhouse gas.

NO3-  NO2-  NO  N2O  N2

There a number of pathways and organisms that can mediate denitrification including bacteria,
fungi and chemical processes. By analysing the stable isotopes of N and O in N2O we can gain
insights into the processes driving denitrification. Our recent research has discovered that chemo
denitrification may be a more important denitrification pathway in coastal systems. This project
will examine isotope ratios in N2O to better understand denitrification pathways taking place in
coastal systems.

                                                                                               11.   11
Professor Glen Deacon
Room No. 136C, Building 19 Tel: 9905 4568, email: glen.deacon@monash.edu
For more information, see: www.chem.monash.edu.au/staff/deacon.html
Rare earth elements (Group 3-Sc, Y, La and the lanthanoids Ce - Lu)
Rare earths are currently seen as the strategic materials of the 21st century with
considerable international concern over the Chinese domination of the supply of
separated elements. Our group provides fundamental knowledge to underpin industrial
developments in the area. Australia has abundant rare earth resources which have
been mainly neglected despite their widespread uses, e.g. ceramic supports for exhaust
emission catalysts, alloy magnets in all car engines, and catalysts for artificial rubber
production. Potential applications include green corrosion inhibitors (below). Their metal-
organic chemistry is a major new frontier and is generating great excitement, for example
in the discovery of new oxidation states. We are particularly interested in high reactivity
rare earth organometallics (Ln-C), organoamides (Ln-NR2) and aryloxides (Ln-OAr), and
have developed unique synthetic methods to obtain them. Features of these compounds
include low coordination numbers and extraordinary reactivity including C-F bond
activation, the most resistant carbon-element bond. To prepare and structurally
characterize the compounds represents a major challenge. The program involves
extensive international collaboration. Some specific projects follow:

1. New Approaches to Metal-Based Syntheses (with Prof. Peter Junk (JCU) and Dr
   Victoria Blair)
2. Carbon-fluorine activation with reactive rare earth complexes (with Dr Victoria
   Blair and Prof Peter Junk)
3. Heterobimetallic complexes and pseudo solid state synthesis (with Prof. Peter
   Junk (JCU) and Dr David Turner)
4. Green Corrosion Inhibitors (with Prof. Peter Junk (JCU), Dr David Turner and Prof.
   Maria Forsyth (Deakin University))
5. New Materials Derived from Small Cyano Anions (with Prof. Stuart Batten)
6. Platinum Anti-Cancer Drugs (with Prof. Alan Bond, Prof Bayden Wood)

   Novel recent structures                                          Techniques

                                                                              Inert Atmosphere handling; X-ray
                                                                              crystallography including
                                                                              Synchrotron use. X-ray powder
                                                                              diffraction; IR, UV-Vis, NMR
                                                                              spectroscopy, Mass spectrometry
                                                                              Pseudo solid state synthesis,
                                                   Project 1                  solvothermal synthesis

Project 2
Some recent papers
Angew. Chem. Int. Ed., 2009, 48, 1117-1121; Chem. Eur. J., 2009, 15, 5503-5519; Chem. Commun., 2010, 46,
5076-5078 ; Chem. Comm., 2012, 48, 124-126; J. Inorg. Biochem., 2012, 115, 226-239; Chem. Eur. J., 2013, 19,
1410-1420; Organometallics, 2013, 32, 1370-1378; Chem. Eur. J., 2014, 20, 4426-4438; Inorg. Chem., 2014, 53,
2528-2534; Chem. Commun., 2014, 50, 10655-10657; Eur. J. Inorg. Chem., 2015, 1484-1489; Chem.Eur.J. 2016,
22, 160-173; Chem. Eur. J., 2017, 23, 2084-2102; Angew. Chem. Int. Ed., 2017, 56, 8486-8489; Coord. Chem. Rev.
2020, 415, 213232, 1-23; Dalton Transx.2020, 49, 7701-7707.

                                                                                                           12.   12
Dr Alison Funston
Room No. G32B, Tel: 9905 6292, email: alison.funston@monash.edu
                                      https://funstongroup.monash.edu/

Research Area - Nanoscience
When matter is divided into tiny, tiny particles, that is, into crystals of nanometer sizes (1 nm = 1
 × 10-9 m), its properties change. We are interested in the changes to the optical properties, or
colour. For example, very tiny spheres containing only 1000’s of gold atoms are red. The colour
of very tiny spheres of CdSe only a few nanometers in diameter can be tuned across the visible
region by changing their size. This effect is due to quantum confinement and the spheres are called
quantum dots (QDs). The colours of nanoparticles can be controlled by:
       Changing the size or shape of the crystal
       Changing the environment of the crystal
       Bringing two or more nanocrystals into close proximity
The nanocrystals have potential applications in energy harvesting for solar energy, nanoscale
energy transfer, sensing, and medicine (drug delivery, cancer therapies).
We research ways to manipulate the way light energy is absorbed, transported and transformed in
advanced nanoscale materials for applications such as:
   •   Solar energy conversion
   •   Energy-efficient lighting and displays
   •   Security labelling and optical sensor platforms
 Our research involves synthesis and investigation of the optical properties of nanocrystal systems. We
 investigate the mechanism of growth of nanocrystals, making use of electron microscopy (TEM and
 SEM). We use advanced spectroscopy and microscopy techniques to measure the optical properties of
 single nanoparticles and single nanoparticle superstructures.
 Potential honours projects include:
 Capturing Light and Manipulating Transport through Nanoscale Structures:
 This is important for solar cells and solar energy harvesting. Project areas include
 energy and electron transfer between nanocrystals, across interfaces and within self-
 assembled films.

 Changing the Colour of Nanoparticles - Nanoparticle Coupling:
 Assemblies of nanocrystals have optimal characteristics for many applications.
 This project aims to make, understand and use these.

 Perovskite Particles – Halide Diffusion: Perovskites are a new class of
 materials which have shown great promise in solar cells and as sensors. These
 applications are affected by the halide composition of the crystal. This project aims to understand halide diffusion
 at the interface of perovskite micro- and nanocrystals.

 Nanoparticles and Nanowires as Nanoscale Optical Fibres: Nanowires are
 able to transport energy below the diffraction limit of light. This project will
 investigate how the three-dimensional shape of the nanowire changes the
 efficiency of the energy transport.

 Aluminium Nanoparticles: Gold and Silver nanocrystals have shown
 promise as chemical/biological sensors and in optoelectronics. However,
 they are expensive. Aluminium nanoparticles are a potential alternative to
 these. This project aims to synthesise aluminium nanocrystals, and
 investigate their shape control and optical properties.

                                                                                                         13.    13
Associate Professor Mike Grace
Room No. G25c (Water Studies), Tel: 9905 4078, email: michael.grace@monash.edu

These projects can be modified to suit the interests of the student – from physical, analytical
and/or environmental chemistry and biogeochemistry through to aquatic and/or restoration
ecology and microbial ecology/genetics.

Impacts of pharmaceuticals and PFAS Compounds on aquatic ecosystem processes

Awareness of the effects of common pharmaceuticals on organisms (insects, fish) living in streams and
lakes has slowly emerged over the last decade. Despite their prevalence in urban waterways, there
has been little published research on how these pharmaceuticals can affect rates of fundamental
ecosystem processes. Work in our group has shown that some of these chemicals can have dramatic
effects. This project will use a combination of pharmaceutical diffusing substrates, flow-through reactors
and bioassay techniques to investigate effects of common drugs like antibiotics, mood modifiers,
painkillers and antihistamines on a range of fundamental ecosystem processes including
photosynthesis, respiration, biomass accrual and denitrification in urban waterways. Depending on the
student’s interests, this project may also explore the potential impact of the prevalent PFAS substances
that are attracting media attention e.g. as highly problematic contaminants in large tunnelling projects.

Constructed wetlands – environmental benefactors or villains?
This project will examine the extent to which wetlands
around Melbourne generate greenhouse gases
(GHGs) including CH4, N2O and CO2. The prevailing
wisdom is that wetlands must be beneficial for the
environment as they are designed to remove nutrients
and other pollutants from stormwater in urban creeks.
However, previous work in the Water Studies Centre
has shown that under a range of relatively common
conditions, wetlands can also generate significant
quantities of GHGs. This project will measure rates of
GHG production in several wetlands around
Melbourne and develop understanding of the key
wetland characteristics and conditions that control
production. Links with nitrogen cycling will be
explored. Experimental work will involve field
measurements and laboratory mesocosm (sediment
core) investigations. The new (in 2021) Isotope
Ratio Mass Spectrometer in the Water Studies
Centre will allow us for the first time to look at the
mechanisms of N2O production via the
isotopomers of this potent GHG.

Depending on the interests of the student, these projects may focus on several aspects of the
biogeochemistry ranging from the analytical chemistry through to development of antimicrobial
resistance resulting from exposure to contaminants.

                                                                                                    14
Dr Joel F. Hooper
Room No. 242, Building 23 South, email: joel.hooper@monash.edu

Catalytic reactions with pristine graphene
Graphene is a two-dimensional carbon allotrope that has had a revolutionary impact on materials science, sensing,
electronics and other fields. Until very recently, pure graphene has not been demonstrated to catalyse any chemical
reactions. In 2020, we reported (with Amir Karton at UWA) that pristine graphene can catalyse the enantiomeric
                                                            interconversion of chiral biaryl compounds. In this
                                                            project, we are developing practical catalytic
                                                            applications of graphene catalysis. In Project 1, we are
                                                            using chiral catalysts including enzymes and NHCs to
                                                            perform the dynamic kinetic resolution of racemic biaryl
                                                            compounds. These chiral catalysts are combined with
                                                            catalytic graphene, which will allow us to convert a
                                                            racemic starting material into a single enantiomer
                                                            product.

In Project 2, we will develop graphene to
catalyse the formation of carbocation
intermediates, leading to the synthesis of
natural products. This reactivity is based
off theoretical predictions by Prof.
Karton, and will be applied to the
synthesis of complex molecules such as
cannabidiol.

New methods for polymer synthesis and functionalisation
We have recently developed new methods for cobalt-mediated radical polymerization starting from simple
carboxylic acids. This allows us precise control over the functional groups attached to the ends of the polymer,
which can be used to synthesise highly functional materials. In Project 3 we are using this methodology to create
polymer/protein hybrids, which will allow us to control the pharmacokinetic properties of therapeutic antibodies.

Cobalt catalysis combining radicals and C-H activation
Cobalt is an increasingly important metal in transition metal catalysis, with a unique abilty to access both 1-
electron and 2-electron reaction pathways. In Project 4, we are looking to access both radical and 2-electron
pathways in a single transformation, through a radical decarboxylation / C-H bond activation cascade.

Representative publications: Kroeger, Hooper, Karton, ChemPhysChem, 2020, 1675.; Chaplin, Hooper et al.
Org. Lett. 2018, 5537.; Lupton, Hooper et al. Chem. Sci. 2018, 7370.

                                                                                                             15
Professor Cameron Jones
Room No. 1.10, Tel: 9902 0391, email: cameron.jones@monash.edu
Group website: www.monash.edu/science/research-groups/chemistry/jonesgroup

Modern Main Group Chemistry
In the past 10 years remarkable progress has been made in the chemistry of very low oxidation state
and low coordination number s- and p-block compounds. It is now possible to prepare and investigate
the fascinating reactivity of compounds that were thought incapable of existence until a few years ago.
The fundamental and applied aspects of this area are rapidly expanding in the Jones group (see group
website for further details). Representative examples of the many potential Honours projects that are
available within this exciting area are as follows:

(i) Low oxidation state Main Group systems: replacements for transition metal catalysts.
In recent years "trans-bent" compounds containing multiple bonds between two p-block metal(I) centres
have been stabilised by ligation with extremely bulky alkyl or aryl substituents (R). These include the
remarkable heavier group 14 analogues of alkynes, viz. RE≡ER (E = Si, Ge, Sn or Pb). In this project
you will prepare examples of related bulky amido substituted "metalynes" (see picture), and related
compounds, and explore their use for the reversible reductive activation of H2, CO2, NH3, ethylene etc.
If this can be achieved, the exciting                                            n--
                                                                        S iM e 3 n
possibility exists to use such compounds                                                             as
                                                                        N Ar *
replacements for expensive and toxic
                                                         M         M
transition metal catalysts in numerous Ar* N M                     M
                                             Ar * N
industrial processes; and for the
                                                   SiMe3
conversion of the Greenhouse gas, CO2, to                                                        useful
chemical products such as methanol.             M=
                                                M =SSii,, G        Sn
                                                          Gee oorr S     n=
                                                                     n;; n = 00
                                                M = B, Al or Ga; n = 2
                                                M = B, Al or G a; n = 2
                                                Ar* = very bulky aryl
see: (i) J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2014, 136,                                                            5283;
(ii) J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2012, 134, 6500; (iii) J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2011, 133, 10074; (iv) Nature, 2010,
463, 171.

(ii) Stabilisation and application of complexes of Group 2 metals in the +1 oxidation state.
It has previously been only possible to prepare compounds
containing the Group 2 metals (Be, Mg or Ca) with the metal                                     in the
+2 oxidation state. Recently, we have reversed this situation                                   with the
landmark preparation of the first thermally stable compounds                                          to
contain Mg-Mg bonds (e.g. see picture). The formal
oxidation state of the magnesium centres in these
compounds is, therefore, +1. As a result, these species are                                       highly
reducing, a situation which has lent them to use, in our
laboratory, as specialist reagents in organic and
organometallic synthetic methodologies. You will further                                         explore
this potential, in addition to examining the possibility of
preparing the first dimeric calcium(I) compounds.
Furthermore, you will examine the use of such systems as                                         soluble
models to study the reversible addition of dihydrogen to magnesium metal (yielding MgH2). This poorly
understood process is of great importance for future hydrogen storage technologies which will be
essential for viable zero emission vehicles powered by fuel cells. The activation of other gaseous small
molecules (e.g. CO2, N2, NH3 etc.) will be investigated at high pressure (ca. 200 atm.) with the aid of
high pressure sapphire NMR tube technology developed in the Ohlin group at Monash.

see (i) Science, 2007, 318, 1754; (ii) J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2015, 137, 8944; (iii) Chem. Sci., 2013, 4,
4383; (iv) Nature Chem., 2010, 2, 865; (v) J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2014, 136, 5283;

                                                                                                  16
Dr Kamila Kochan
Room No. 1.10, Tel: 9905 1407, email: kamila.kochan@monash.edu
Group website: https://www.monash.edu/science/cfb

  Characterisation of Ru-based complexes, novel agents with promising anti-cancerous activity.
                 From physicochemical properties to interaction with biomolecules.
Recently in the medicinal chemistry metallacarboranes are gaining increasing interest, as they show
promising potential biological activity. In particular, anti-proliferating activity was attributed to
transition metal complex fragments. Combination of these with dicarbollide cluster leads to
development of novel metallodrugs. In this work we focused on the use of [Ru(arene)]2+ groups which
were identified in the last 20 years as promising alternatives to platinum-based anticancer drugs,
demonstrating lower intrinsic toxicity and broad spectrum of biological activity. The novel Ru-
complexes were recently designed and synthetised by a group in Leipzig University (prof. E. Hey-
Hawkins).
The combination of dicarbollide anion with [Ru(arene)]2+ is extremely promising not only due to
potential anti-proliferative activity, but also due to highly hydrophobic properties of dicarbollide. This
can enhance the transport of the metallodrugs through cell membrane and potentially has high robustness
in biological condition, as it is not metabolised by any enzymes. This project focuses on characterising
the properties of several novel Ru-carboranes (examples of structures of some in Fig. 1) using a
computational and experimental approach (IR, Raman, UV-VIS spectroscopy). In particular, we would
like to characterise aspects such as aggregation, dissociation and diffusion mechanisms of selected
ruthenium complexes and examine their interaction with a series of biomolecules.

Figure 1. Structures of selected Ru-based complexes under investigation as potential novel anti-cancer
agents. (Figure adapted from [1]).
Further reading:
[1] Gozzi, M., Schwarze, B., Coburger, P. and Hey-Hawkins, E., 2019. On the Aqueous Solution
Behavior of C-Substituted 3, 1, 2-Ruthenadicarbadodecaboranes. Inorganics, 7(7), p.91.
[2] Gozzi, M., et al. 2017. Antiproliferative activity of (η 6-arene) ruthenacarborane sandwich
complexes against HCT116 and MCF7 cell lines. Dalton Transactions, 46(36), pp.12067-12080.

                                                                                                    17
Professor Tanja Junkers
Room No. 220A, Building 23, Tel: 03 9905 4524, email: tanja.junkers@monash.edu
Group website: www.polymatter.net

The Polymer Reaction Design group strives for the development of
new materials via state of the art polymer synthesis methods. From
fundamentals and kinetics of polymerizations to the design of new
polymer reaction pathways, all elemental steps are addressed and
custom-made materials are constructed. Research spans widely from synthetic chemistry projects over
process design to physical properties of materials.

Core research areas of the PRD group are the synthesis of sequence-defined and sequence-controlled
polymers and oligomers. Such polymers bridge the gap between classical synthetic polymers and
biological polymers such as peptides or RNA. Further, the group focuses on the use of continuous flow
chemistry approaches for the synthesis of complex polymers and for formulation of polymer
(nano)particles. Flow chemistry is an interesting tool that allows us to not only design polymers with
unprecedented accuracy, but also in a simple, and automated fashion. Last, but not least, we are also
working on biopolymers, either biodegradable polymers or materials made from biofeedstocks.

    1. Sequence-defined oligomers for biomedical application
Using the well-known RAFT polymerization strategy we design discrete oligomers that mimic peptide
chains. In order to achieve this, amino-acid analogue monomers are first synthesized, followed by
oligomerization and product isolation. Oligomers with encoded information will be obtained and
evaluated for their biological function (antimicrobial, cell guiding). This project is very synthesis oriented
and suitable for more than one student.
    2. Automated flow synthesis of polymer material libraries
In the PRD group we have established techniques that allows for synthesis of polymer material libraries
via a self-optimizing autonomous flow reactor. Reactions are fully computer controlled and on the basis
of online-monitoring data, smart algorithms take over the synthesis process and self-optimize for
desired products. We want to extent this system by adding a benchtop NMR spectrometer into the
system. This project is very focused on flow chemistry and process design. Knowledge in computer
programming (Python, LabView) is very beneficial to carry out this project, yet not strictly required.
    3. Facing dispersity: How to make discrete polymers and study of their properties
Today, we are able to access a very broad variety of polymer materials, and we come very close to
structure found in nature. Yet, we are still much limited when it comes to dispersity. Via advanced
synthesis and advanced polymer separation we are able to bring polymers towards monodispersity.
This allows us to study these materials from angles that were until today not possible. We will produce
close-to-monodisperse polymers and then study their properties. The project is suited for students with
synthetic interests that also want to work on the physical chemistry side of things.
    4. Morphology control in continuous flow micelle formation
Block copolymer micelles are ideal vehicles for targeted drug delivery, but suffer greatly from
reproducibility issues and limited control over the size and shape of the micelles. Flow processes make
the micelle formation more reproducible and scalable. At the same time, flow can be used to beat
thermodynamics and to create micelle morphologies that are otherwise unachievable. We have very
promising results for these procedures and want to investigate the possibilities of flow micelle formation
much deeper. The project will involve synthesis of block copolymers, flow micellation and
characterization of the resulting nanoparticles. This project is cosupervised by Rico Tabor and is
suitable to students who like macromolecular synthesis as much as physical chemistry of nanoparticles.

                                                                                                        18
Dr Sara Kyne
Chemistry Education and Green Chemistry
Room No. 134B Building 19; Tel: 9905 4555, Email: sara.kyne@.monash.edu

This document will give you an idea of the type of research we are undertaking within my group. If
you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact me (details above).

Chemistry education (with Assoc. Prof. Chris Thompson)
Impact of personalising student feedback through Learning Analytics
We are interested in using Learning Analytics to optimise student learning. Learning Analytics
measure and process student data collected from Moodle (the University Learning Management
System). These data allow us to personalise feedback to students, which is particularly difficult in
large student cohorts. We are evaluating how student’s respond to personalised feedback, to inform
us how we can better support students throughout their degree programme.

Green chemistry through context-based learning
We aim to prepare undergraduate students to tackle global challenges confronting modern society.
To achieve this, we are designing and implementing context-based learning activities to encourage
students to make links between chemistry, the environment and society. Our goal is to for students to
learn about fundamental chemistry concepts and relate the concepts to their everyday life, in
particular changing their actions that impact the environment.

Green chemistry synthesis (with University of Groningen, Netherlands)
Green chemistry catalysis
We are developing site-selective catalytic methods to transform simple sugars. These reactions use
photoredox catalysts and visible light to promote carbon-carbon bond formation. The reaction
mechanism is proposed to occur through the coupling of two different radical reactions. We are
investigating the reaction mechanism, and how various radical species and metal intermediates
interact. This is important to inform design of new, site-selective synthetic reactions of more complex
sugars.

Iron promoted radical chemistry
We are designing iron based radical reactions for organic synthesis. Previously we found that Fe(I)
and Fe(0) species promote radical reactions under mild conditions. We have investigated the
mechanism of the catalytic cycle and identified key reaction intermediates. With this insight, we are
designing new selective radical reactions and iron-based radical mediators.

                                                                                                   19
Professor David W. Lupton
Catalysis and Synthesis
Room No. 238 Bld. 23 South; Tel: 9902 0327, email: david.lupton@.monash.edu
My group discovers reactions and uses them assemble materials designed for function. More information
from David, or http://users.monash.edu.au/~dwlupton/index.html

Project A: Enantioselective catalysis with NHC-catalysis
The discovery of new reactive intermediates enables the discover of new chemical reactions. In 2021
we will examine three reactive intermediates
(enediamine A, and enetriamine B, and dienyl acyl
azolium C) accessible using N-heterocyclic carbene
catalysts.1 What will we do with them? Come and have a
chat to find out our latest ideas! Key references: 1) Fernando, J.
E. M.; Nakano, Y.; Lupton, D. W. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2019, 53, 2905;
Gillard, R.; Fernando, J. E. M.; Lupton, D. W. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed.
2018, 57, 4712; Cao, J.; R. Gillard, Breugst, M.; Lupton, D. W. ACS
Catalysis 2020 10.1021/acscatal.0c02705

Project B: Hybrid Biocatalysis
Recently we commenced studies in collaboration with
Professor Jackson (ANU) on the discovery of chemical
reactions using a new type of biocatalysis in which both the protein and the cofactors (THDP) are
modified to allow optimal performance. In this project we will prepare a series of new co-factors (THDP)
and examine their use firstly as organic catalysts and then with wild type enzymes, which will then be
modified using directed evolution approaches2 to give new hybrid biocatalysts.3 A flow chart describing
this project is shown below, with section 1 and 2 conducted at Monash; 3 in collaboration.

                                                                                                                                      Key
references: 2) For reviews see: Kan, S. B. J., Lewis, R. D., Chen, K. & Arnold, F. H. Science 2016, 354, 1048. 3) Campbell, E. C. Grant,
J.; Wang, Y.; Sandhu, M.; Williams, R. J.; Nisbet, D. R.; Perriman, A. W.; Lupton, D. W.; Jackson, C. J. Adv. Biosystems 2018, 2, 1700240.

Project C: Structural Modification of linozelid antibiotics.
                                                    Obtaining structural information of biological materials using X-ray
                                                    analysis can be challenging. Using cryo-EM approaches the structure
                                                    of the ribosome with antibiotics bound have been obtained. Using this
                                                    data we have developed new antibiotics.4 Having obtained recent
                                                    proof of principle for this approach, we will complete a rigorous
                                                    analysis of linozelid (and related structures) guided by cryo-EM in
                                                                                2020. (Colaboration: Dr Belousoff,
                                                                                Microbiology) Key references: 4) Belousoff,
                                                                                       M. J.; Venugopal, H.; Wright, A.; Seoner, S.;
                                                                                       Stuart, I.; Stubenrauch, C.; Bamert, R. S.; Lupton,
                                                                                       D. W. Lithgow T. ChemMedChem 2019, 14,527

                                                                                                                                  20
Professor Doug MacFarlane
Green Chemical Futures Room 238, email: d.macfarlane@monash.edu

This document will give you an idea of the type of research we are undertaking. Much more at:
www.chem.monash.edu.au/ionicliquids

Solar Fuels (with Dr Sasha Simonov). Hydrogen and ammonia are the ideal liquid fuels for the future,
if they can be generated in a sustainable way. These two simple compounds have tremendous potential
to become Australia’s next massive renewable energy export industry. Materials which support the
electrolysis of water and nitrogen are the key to a viable process. It is relatively easy to find
electrocatalyst that will work, but the The Ammonia Economy
challenge is to develop materials that will do
so at high efficiency. The project will
investigate new catalysts and test them in
prototype cells to quantify their catalytic
performance and lifetime. One of the key
aspects of this is the interaction of the
electrode material with the electrolyte and the
project will investigate these using advanced
characterisation techniques such as XPS. The
project will suit someone with interests in
materials or energy chemistry. MacFarlane et
al: A Roadmap to the Ammonia Economy
(Joule 2020).

Synthesis of Novel Ionic Liquids (with Dr Mega Kar and Dr Thomas Ruether (CSIRO)) Organic
                               salts based on the FSO2-N-SO2F anion have recently been shown in
                               our group to have some very unusual solvency properties, especially
                               for metal cations of interest in batteries and nitrogen electrolysis. In
                               this project we will explore the chemistry of FSO2- based anions more
                               broadly – a very large family of new compounds is possible from this
                               simple starting point. This project will suit someone interested in ionic
                               liquid synthetic chemistry, with some physical and spectroscopic
                               property measurement work to aid in understanding the behaviour of
                               these new salts. Gunderson‐Briggs et al, A Hybrid Anion for Ionic
                               Liquid and Battery Electrolyte Applications: Half Triflamide, Half
                               Carbonate. Angewandte Chemie International Edition 2019, 4390-
                               4394.

Phase Change Materials for Thermal Energy Storage (with Dr Karolina Matusek and Dr Mega
Kar) It is possible to store vast quantities of energy as heat very cheaply in Phase Change Materials that
simply absorb heat when they melt and release it again when they freeze. The key property is a high
heat of fusion; a slightly mysterious property that reflects the subtle changes in bonding that take place
during melting of a compound. Organic salts have tremendous scope in this respect because of their
ability to combine ionic bonding with van der Waals interactions. This project will synthesise and
explore the crystal structures of new organic salts for this application.

                                                                                                    21
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