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Welcome to the Flaherty Research Group!

Our research focuses on the overlapping topics of catalysis, surface science, and materials synthesis. The goal is to determine the mechanisms of individual elementary steps and competing pathways for chemical reactions important for best utilizing our limited fossil resources and biomass. To unravel complicated networks of reactions, we utilize steady-state kinetic measurements, transient and perturbation techniques, and in situ spectroscopy. With detailed knowledge of how a reaction proceeds we can better design processes and catalysts to selectively promote desirable reactions over the undesirable pathways.

In order to construct develop clear relationships between the composition and structure of catalytic sites and the chemistry they promote, it is critical to use uniform and well-characterized materials. This is achieved using advanced synthetic methods which take advantage of strong chemical driving forces to self-assemble the desired catalytic site.

Projects in our group are motivated by the need to efficiently process recalcitrant petrochemicals, selectively transform biomass, develop alternatives for harmful oxidants, and produce clean burning fuels. Our intention is to make insightful contributions to the scientific community; to explore possible solutions to industrially and socially relevant problems, and to educate and train young researchers.

Recent News

(06/22/2020) Tomas is a recipient of SCS Graduate Student Teaching Award! Congratulations!

(05/2020) Our work on Potentiometric Titration to identify Functional Group on Carbon is accepted! Good Work!

(04/2020) Tom and Claudia pass their Preliminary Exams! Congrats!

(04/02/2020) Daniel successfully defends!. Congrats Dr. Daniel Bregante!

(04/02/2020) Chris is selected for the NSF GRFP. Congrats!

(04/01/2020) Zeynep passes her Preliminary Exam. Great Work!

All News

Recent Publications

[58] Zhongyao Zhang and David W. Flaherty, "Modified Potentiometric Titration Method to Distinguish and Quantify Oxygenated Functional Groups on Carbon Materials by pKa and Chemical Reactivity" Carbon 2020, 166, 436-445.

[57] Abinaya Sampath and David W. Flaherty, "Effects of Phosphorus Addition on Selectivity and Stability of Pd Model Catalysts during Cyclohexene Dehydrogenation" Catal. Sci. Tech., 2020, 10, 993-1005.

[56] Daniel T. Bregante, Jun Zhi Tan, Andre Sutrisno, and David W. Flaherty, "Heteroatom Substituted Zeolite FAU with Ultralow Al Contents for Liquid-Phase Oxidation CatalysisCatal. Sci. Tech. 202010, 635 - 647.

[54] Daniel T. Bregante and David W. Flaherty, “Impact of Specific Interactions Among Reactive Surface Intermediates and Confined Water on Catalysis and Adsorption in Lewis Acid Zeolites" ACS Catal., 2019, 9, 10951-10962.

Full Publication List

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