Dr. Tamara Hamilton
Welcome to the Hamilton Research Group at Barry University! Research in the group is performed entirely by undergraduates, who learn techniques including organic synthesis, solid-state chemistry, synthesis of air-sensitive materials, column chromatography, self-assembly, coordination chemistry, green chemistry, crystallization, NMR, UV/Vis spectroscopy, IR spectroscopy, and analysis of X-ray crystallographic data.
Our research program has two goals:
- Development of environmentally benign syntheses of porphyrins and metalloporphyrins using a solvent-free approach including grinding and heating in slurries.
- Construction of a family of new catalyst-embedded metal-organic polyhedra and evaluation of their efficacy as catalysts.
Solvent-free Synthesis of Porphyrins
We combine an aldehyde with pyrrole in the presence of an acid catalyst and grind using a mortar and pestle. After a few minutes grinding, a pink crystalline powder forms. Presence of a porphyrin is confirmed by UV/Vis spectroscopy.
Pyrrole, an aldehyde, and an acid catalyst are combined in a mortar. The reactants are colorless liquids.
After c. 1 min grinding, a pink powder starts to form.
After c. 6 min grinding, the reaction mixture is completely transformed to a pink, crystalline product.
Construction of Metal-Organic Polyhedra From Porphyrins
We hope to construct a family of metal-organic polyhedra (MOPs) having porphyrin molecules as their faces. The resulting MOPs will hopefully act as efficient catalysts for a number of organic reactions.
- Andrea Orvieto
- Simon Astor
- Frantzesca Bélancourt
- Cherice Boyce
- Our research was highlighted in Barry Magazine
- What is a porphyrin? Wikipedia entry
- The 12 Principles of Green Chemistry: EPA website
Current group: (L to R) Dr. Hamilton, Andrea Orvieto, Simon Astor.
Simon works up a reaction.
A reaction on the Schlenk line.
Distillation of propionic acid