In this project funded by the Chemical Synthesis Program of the Chemistry Division, Professor Richard D. Adams of the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of South Carolina will continue to develop new procedures for the synthesis of multimetallic mixed-metal cluster complexes containing combinations of precious transition metals, e.g. ruthenium, rhodium, iridium and platinum with heavy main group metals, such as tin, antimony and bismuth. These new mixed-metal cluster complexes will be converted into bi- and multimetallic nanoparticles on supports to be used as new next-generation heterogeneous nanocatalysts for the selective hydrogenation of unsaturated hydrocarbons and the ammoxidation and partial oxidation of hydrocarbons. Emphasis will be placed on combinations of metals that can function cooperatively to perform difficult organic transformations and reactions with high selectivity. The conversion of these complexes into supported multimetallic nanoparticles will allow access to a new generation of multimetallic nanoclusters for applications in catalytic transformations and reactions of hydrocarbons.
The broader impacts involve training of graduate and undergraduate students in research and to provide the experience required for them to compete in the highly technological professional environment of the U. S. chemical industry. They will learn to formulate and perform useful and intellectually challenging research and to solve chemical problems. The research experience will require both teamwork and independence, and will stimulate motivation, creativity and leadership. Students will be trained in the synthesis and characterization of organometallic compounds and heterogeneous catalysts. The project includes national and international collaborations that will broaden the education and experience of the students. The proposed heterogeneous multimetallic nanocatalysts may have an impact on areas that rely on the efficient organic transformations within pharmaceutical, chemical, and agricultural industries.