Craig MacKinnon: Research Program


We are looking at a number of compounds called oligomers for the purpose of finding new semiconducting materials.  Oligomers are short-chain polymers, in our case they contain less than 10 monomer units.  Our research can be subdivided into a number of projects:

Examples of Current Projects:

1. Crystal and Thin-Film Engineering of Oligothiophenes.   We are investigating the synthesis of thionitrile-substituted oligomers of thiophene.  The thionitrile (SCN) group has the ability to form intermolecular hydrogen bonds, and we are investigating the structural consequence of this group - will the group act as a supramolecular synthon to generate p-stacked structures?  We are also interested in the ability of the SCN group to react with gold surfaces and nanoparticles to generate thin-films and coated nanoparticles.
2. The Nitrile-Silver Bond as a Supramolecular Synthon.  We are synthesising a number of aromatic nitriles that contain heteroatoms in the aromatic ring, which we are attempting to coordinate to the silver(I) cation.  We aim to test the robustness of the silver-nitrile interaction in the presence of other potential binding sites.  In addition, the use of smaller aromatic rings allows the possibility of observing the rare Ag-Ag bond.  We are also interested in increasing the number of heteroatoms (e.g. going from thiophene to thiazole) to see the effect of these atoms on the self-assembly.

Green Reactions.  We are interested in determining the efficacy of green synthetic methodologies in the presence of heteroaromatic rings (most methods are optimized for use on benzene-containing aromatic systems).

Bug pictureGroup 2008  

External Funding Sources:

Research Corporation

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Last updated, July 4, 2013
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