Our group has been developing methods to examine the reactions between reactive solid materials and gas-phase species for a the development of reactive adsorbents and catalysts. Our current research interests involve the development of new active materials for the decomposition of chemical warfare agents and pesticides. The Department of Defense, particularly the U.S. Army, has an interest in such materials for use as “immediate decon” materials, powders that can be dispersed over equipment or clothing that may have been exposed to chemical agents, to adsorb and destroy the agent. We are currently examining the reactivity of a particular simulant, dimethyl methylphosphonate (DMMP), as it adsorbs and decomposes on different reactive solids, including polyoxometallate compounds (POMs) and porous metal-organic framework compounds (MOFs). We use infrared spectroscopy to examine the reactions that take place during adsorption of DMMP and other model compounds on the solids by observing the accompanying changes that occur in the spectra of the adsorbate/substrate complex compared to those of the individual components. We also use a microreactor system to examine the products of the decomposition reactions that occur and can do so quantitatively and develop a complete mass balance for the reacting system.
Current Graduate Students
Kennesaw State University - 2015
Clayton State University - 2015
Summer Undergraduate Student
Georgia State University - PC
Nicolet FT-IR system with diffuse reflectance optics and gas connections for the in situ reaction cell. The Harrick Scientific cell is shown in the top picture.