How acids behave in interstellar space

How acids behave in interstellar space

NEWS OF THE MONTH: Acids in water release protons, but how do they behave in interstellar space?

RUHR EXPLORES SOLVATION SCIENCE

RUHR EXPLORES SOLVATION SCIENCE

We shape a new scientific discipline, inspire the scientists of tomorrow, and enable future technologies

WE ARE RESOLV

WE ARE RESOLV

Over 200 scientists from about 50 research groups in 6 institutions

ZEMOS: Home of Solvation Science @RUB

ZEMOS: Home of Solvation Science @RUB

The first research building for Solvation Science in the world. Hosts over 100 scientists, it's home to 6 disciplines.

WHAT is RESOLV?

The Cluster of Excellence RESOLV is an interdisciplinary research project of the Ruhr University Bochum and the TU Dortmund University, as well as four other institutions in the German Ruhr area. Since 2012, about 200 scientists cooperate to clarify how the solvent is involved in the control, mediation and regulation of chemical reactions. Our research is essential to advance technologies that could reuse CO2 for chemicals production, increase the efficiency of energy conversion and storage and develop smart sensors. RESOLV is funded by the German Federal Government and the state of North Rhine-Westphalia with 42 Mio. EUR over the period 2019-2025. 

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Posted on
Stereographic photograph (1903) of the captured Man-eater of Calcutta in the Calcutta zoo. The tiger had earlier claimed 200 human victims.

#Asktheauthor: How carbon atoms cross energy barriers (and tigers don't)

Angew. Chem.: 3 Questions to RESOLV scientist Wolfram Sander about his recent Angewandte Chemie publication on heavy atom tunneling.

1. What is the new discovery that you made?

In our experiments we found that the molecule Monodeuterated 1,5-dimethyl-semi-bullvalene undergoes rearrangement from a less stable to a more stable configuration at temperatures as low as 3 K (-271 oC) despite an activation barrier of 4.8 kcal/mol. We ascribe these results to carbon atom tunneling, a very rare quantum mechanical effect. Our experiments confirm an earlier theoretical prediction for this beaviour of the dimethylsemibullvalene. 

2. What is its significance? 

We found another example (of the few out there) that carbon atoms can behave like waves, not only like particles. Therefore, they can overcome an energetic barrier even if they don’t have enough energy to cross that barrier - this is called tunneling. Imagine a tiger leaving a cage without jumping over the fence, since the fence is too high for it. Fortunately, the tunneling probability depends strongly on the mass of the tunneling particle, and the probability for a tiger to tunnel is negligibly small (although not zero). This is well known to happen for electrons and hydrogen atoms, but it has been rarely proven for relatively heavy atoms like carbon.

The phenomenon of tunneling is of fundamental importance in physics and chemistry. For example electron tunneling is the basis for a very important imaging technology like the Scanning Tunneling Microscope (STM). And hydrogen tunneling contributes to numerous reactions in chemistry and biology.  

3. Is this related to Solvation Science?

Yes. Tunneling is very much influenced by solvents, but it is totally unknown how.

Link to RUB press release

Link to original publication

Posted on
Stereographic photograph (1903) of the captured Man-eater of Calcutta in the Calcutta zoo. The tiger had earlier claimed 200 human victims.

#Asktheauthor: How carbon atoms cross energy barriers (and tigers don't)

Angew. Chem.: 3 Questions to RESOLV scientist Wolfram Sander about his recent Angewandte Chemie publication on heavy atom tunneling.

1. What is the new discovery that you made?

In our experiments we found that the molecule Monodeuterated 1,5-dimethyl-semi-bullvalene undergoes rearrangement from a less stable to a more stable configuration at temperatures as low as 3 K (-271 oC) despite an activation barrier of 4.8 kcal/mol. We ascribe these results to carbon atom tunneling, a very rare quantum mechanical effect. Our experiments confirm an earlier theoretical prediction for this beaviour of the dimethylsemibullvalene. 

2. What is its significance? 

We found another example (of the few out there) that carbon atoms can behave like waves, not only like particles. Therefore, they can overcome an energetic barrier even if they don’t have enough energy to cross that barrier - this is called tunneling. Imagine a tiger leaving a cage without jumping over the fence, since the fence is too high for it. Fortunately, the tunneling probability depends strongly on the mass of the tunneling particle, and the probability for a tiger to tunnel is negligibly small (although not zero). This is well known to happen for electrons and hydrogen atoms, but it has been rarely proven for relatively heavy atoms like carbon.

The phenomenon of tunneling is of fundamental importance in physics and chemistry. For example electron tunneling is the basis for a very important imaging technology like the Scanning Tunneling Microscope (STM). And hydrogen tunneling contributes to numerous reactions in chemistry and biology.  

3. Is this related to Solvation Science?

Yes. Tunneling is very much influenced by solvents, but it is totally unknown how.

Link to RUB press release

Link to original publication

Our scientific fields

Research Area I

Local Solvent Fluctuations in Heterogeneous Systems

 

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Research Area II

Solvent Control of Chemical Dynamics and Reactivity

 

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Research Area III

Solvation under Extrem Conditions

 

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Video: The solvent of life

Water. It’s the most abundant substance on Earth´s surface and in our bodies. But is water a passive spectator in the animated scene of bio-chemical reactions inside our cells? RESOLV scientists investigate the important role that water plays in the most diverse processes, bringing solvation science into the spotlight.

More videos from RESOLV 

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Posted on
Stereographic photograph (1903) of the captured Man-eater of Calcutta in the Calcutta zoo. The tiger had earlier claimed 200 human victims.

#Asktheauthor: How carbon atoms cross energy barriers (and tigers don't)

Angew. Chem.: 3 Questions to RESOLV scientist Wolfram Sander about his recent Angewandte Chemie publication on heavy atom tunneling.

1. What is the new discovery that you made?

In our experiments we found that the molecule Monodeuterated 1,5-dimethyl-semi-bullvalene undergoes rearrangement from a less stable to a more stable configuration at temperatures as low as 3 K (-271 oC) despite an activation barrier of 4.8 kcal/mol. We ascribe these results to carbon atom tunneling, a very rare quantum mechanical effect. Our experiments confirm an earlier theoretical prediction for this beaviour of the dimethylsemibullvalene. 

2. What is its significance? 

We found another example (of the few out there) that carbon atoms can behave like waves, not only like particles. Therefore, they can overcome an energetic barrier even if they don’t have enough energy to cross that barrier - this is called tunneling. Imagine a tiger leaving a cage without jumping over the fence, since the fence is too high for it. Fortunately, the tunneling probability depends strongly on the mass of the tunneling particle, and the probability for a tiger to tunnel is negligibly small (although not zero). This is well known to happen for electrons and hydrogen atoms, but it has been rarely proven for relatively heavy atoms like carbon.

The phenomenon of tunneling is of fundamental importance in physics and chemistry. For example electron tunneling is the basis for a very important imaging technology like the Scanning Tunneling Microscope (STM). And hydrogen tunneling contributes to numerous reactions in chemistry and biology.  

3. Is this related to Solvation Science?

Yes. Tunneling is very much influenced by solvents, but it is totally unknown how.

Link to RUB press release

Link to original publication

igss summer school

The integrated Graduate School Solvation Science hosts an annual Summer School at the Ruhr University Bochum. The school always takes place during Whitsuntide and is an integral part of the GSS students' training during their doctoral studies. This year's iGSS Summer School will take place from the 11th to the 14th of June, 2019.

International speakers, suggested by the students themselves, are invited to give keynote talks on their research in the field of Solvation Science. The Advanced Laboratory Modules give the students an excellent opportunity to learn new and interesting experimental and theoretical techniques within a specific research topic of their own choice. 

Find out more and apply

Publications highlight

K Lucht, D Loose, M Ruschmeier, V Strotkötter, G Dyker, K Morgenstern
Hydrophilicity and Microsolvation of an Organic Molecule Resolved on the Submolecular Level by Scanning Tunneling Microscopy, Angew. Chem. 57 (2018), 1266, DOI: 10.1002/anie.201711062

N Tsuji, JL Kennemur, T Buyck, S Lee, S Prévost, PSJ Kaib, D Bykov, C Farès, B List
Activation of olefins via asymmetric Brøsted acid, Science 359 (2018), 1501, DOI: 10.1126/science.aaq0445

D Muñoz-santiburcio, M Farnesi Camellone, D Marx
Solvation-Induced Changes in the Mechanism of Alcohol Oxidation at Gold/Titania Nanocatalysts in the Aqueous Phase versus Gas Phase, Angew. Chem. 57 (2018), 3327, DOI: 10.1002/anie.201710791

KF Pfister, S Baader, M Baader, S Berndt, LJ Goossen
Biofuel by isomerizing metathesis of rapeseed oil esters with (bio)ethylene for use in contemporary dieses engines, Science Advances  3 (2017),  e1602624, DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1602624

C Schuabb, N Kumar, S Pataraia, D Marx, R Winter
Pressure modulates the self-cleavage step of the hairpin ribozyme, Nature Communications 8 (2017), 14661, DOI: 10.1038/ncomms14661

 

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