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Chemistry - Faculty - Rui Zhang

Dr. Rui Zhang

Dr. Rui Zhang

Professor

Office:  TCCW 443
Phone:  270-745-3803
Email:  rui.zhang@wku.edu
Website:  http://people.wku.edu/rui.zhang/

Courses

CHEM 116      Introduction to Chemistry

CHEM 340      Organic Chemistry I

CHEM 341      Organic Chemistry I Lab

CHEM 342      Organic Chemistry II

CHEM 343      Organic Chemistry II lab

CHEM 440      Introduction to Organic Synthesis

CHEM 541      Advanced Organic Chemistry

Research

Organic

Organic and organometallic synthesis, catalytic oxidations, kinetic studies

Topically, my research activities have focused on several aspects of organic chemistry, organometallic chemistry, and physical organic chemistry. Much of my research work is devoted to the development of novel methods for oxidative transformations and for selective catalysis in general. The inspiration comes from biomimetic studies of the predominant oxidation catalysts in Nature, namely the cytochrome P450 enzymes. The ultimate goal is to understand importantly biological oxidation reactions and develop the highly efficient enzyme-like oxidation methods. Our particular interest is to photo-chemically generate highly reactive metal-oxo intermediates that can be utilized for catalytic oxidations. Photochemical reactions are intrinsically advantageous because activation is obtained by the absorption of sunlight, which leaves no residue; whereas most chemical methods involve the use of toxic/polluting reagents. The use of molecular oxygen and solar light in our innovative research is particularly relevant to realizing innovative and economically advantageous processes for conversion of hydrocarbons into oxygenates and, at the same time, to move toward a “sustainable chemistry” that has a minimal environmental impact.

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 Last Modified 9/25/14