Inorganic Chemistry Research at West Virginia University



Research in the Milsmann lab combines the areas of physical inorganic chemistry, synthetic inorganic chemistry, and catalysis to find new solutions towards more sustainable and green chemistry. We try to utilize compounds based on earth-abundant elements in (photo)chemical processes that are traditionally dominated by precious metal catalysts. All projects in the group involve the synthesis and manipulation of air-sensitive materials under rigorously inert conditions and take advantage of the large tool box of available physical methods for in-depths analysis and characterization.







Below you will find a selection of our team’s most recently published papers. Click on the title or picture for a link to the article. A complete list of the group's research articles can be found here.

Brett M. Hakey, Dylan C. Leary, Jin Xiong, Caleb F. Harris, Jonathan M. Darmon, Jeffrey L. Petersen, John F. Berry, Yisong Guo, Carsten Milsmann

Inorganic Chemistry 2021, available online

The square-planar compound (MesPDPPh)Fe(CPh2) is the first example of an iron carbene complex containing an intermediate-spin iron center. This unique electronic structure gives rise to a paramagnetic ground state with large unquenched orbital angular momentum. The resulting highly anisotropic magnetic properties are established by magnetic susceptibility measurements and applied-field Mössbauer spectroscopy. Computational analysis using the spectroscopy-oriented configuration interaction (SORCI) method provides further insight and reproduces the unusual magnetic behavior of the complex.

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Brett M. Hakey, Dylan C. Leary, Jose G. Rodriguez, Jordan C. Martinez, Nicholas B. Vaughan, Jonathan M. Darmon, Novruz G. Akhmedov, Jeffrey L. Petersen, Brian S. Dolinar, Carsten Milsmann

Zeitschrift für anorganische und allgemeine Chemie 2021, 647, 1503

A new pyridine dipyrrolide (PDP) ligand variant with 2,6-dichlorophenyl groups shows increased stability towards oxidative degradation and allows the isolation of a high-valent iron imido compound. Short contacts between the chlorine substituents and the iron center result in significant changes to the solid state structures of the new iron PDP complexes.

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Mo Yang, Sara Sheykhi, Yu Zhang, Carsten Milsmann and Felix N. Castellano

Chemical Science 2021, 12, 9069

The LMCT photosensitizer Zr(MesPDPPh)2 paired with DPA-based acceptors enabled low power threshold photochemical upconversion with record-setting quantum efficiencies.

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Yu Zhang, Tia S. Lee, Joseph M. Favale, Dylan C. Leary, Jeffrey L. Petersen, Gregory D. Scholes, Felix N. Castellano and Carsten Milsmann

Nature Chemistry 2020, 12, 345

Understanding the photophysical properties of transition-metal complexes is paramount to advances in photocatalysis, solar energy conversion and light-emitting diodes. Now, long-lived emission via thermally activated delayed fluorescence has been demonstrated from an air- and water-stable zirconium complex featuring excited states with significant ligand-to-metal charge transfer character.

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C. Eugene Bennett Department of Chemistry
West Virginia University
Chemistry Research Laboratory 467
100 Prospect Street, Morgantown, WV 26506

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