Welcome to the home page of the Blakemore Group! We are a research group in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Kansas.

Our aim is to improve the sustainable production of chemicals, fuels, and energy using the tools of inorganic and organometallic chemistry, molecular electrochemistry, and surface chemistry. Our active projects are diverse in scope and span a number of topics:

Synthesis and study of multimetallic coordination complexes. We are synthesizing and characterizing heterobimetallic complexes of uranium and other heavy elements, in order to understand how to predictably tune their chemical and electrochemical properties and reactivity.

Molecular catalysis and catalyst activation. We are investigating the activation pathways and catalytic activity of several classes of organometallic species, including half-sandwich rhodium complexes and early-transition metal catalysts for olefin activation.

Carbon dioxide conversion. In collaboration with Profs. Kevin Leonard and Bala Subramaniam at the KU Center for Environmentally Beneficial Catalysis, we are developing new media and chemistries for carbon dioxide conversion to more useful chemicals.

Applications of the electrochemical quartz crystal microbalance. We are using piezoelectric gravimetry to understand interfacial reactivity during electrochemistry and electrocatalysis. Interfacial processes, like metal deposition, are often difficult to study but impact the efficiency of most electrode processes.

Structure-function studies of chemically modified electrodes. We are studying the immobilization of metal complexes on electrodes in order to understand the role of molecular structure in their behavior and stability. Our goal is to rationally design systems for applications in areas like separations science.

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We need the kind of courage that can withstand the subtle corruption of the cynics, so that 
we can show the world that we are not afraid of the future.
It has always been easy to hate and destroy, but to build and to cherish is [the real challenge].
–Elizabeth R.

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«Вода долбит не силой, а частым падением.»
Gutta cavat lapidem non vi, sed saepe cadendo.
Water carves not with force, but with frequent falling. –Ovid


Recent News

26–30 June 2022 – James and Riddhi attend the 29th Rare Earth Research Conference (RERC29) in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. James delivered an invited talk on the first morning of the meeting on the topic of "Redox Tuning of Tripodal Cerium Complexes with Secondary Metal Cations," and Riddhi was awarded a Best Poster Prize for her work on "Electrochemical Activation of the Uranyl Ion." Thanks to Prof. Eric Schelter and Dr. Marta Guron (U. Penn) for organizing such a great meeting—a truly inspirational experience!

6 June 2022 – An exciting summer of research is underway in the Blakemore Group–our seventh here at KU! Welcome to our newest group members: Fynn Cooper, an incoming graduate student; Cecilia Paranjothi, a rising sophomore at KU;  and Natalie Lind, a visiting summer REU student from Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado. Let the fun begin!

6 May 2022 – Emma Cosner has been named the recipient of the Class of 1913 Award. This prize, which is one of the prestigious University Awards, is granted annually to two graduating students “who, by their evidenced intelligence, devotion to their studies, and personal character, give promise of such usefulness to society.” The central criterion for this award is a stellar academic record, making Emma a very deserving recipient. Emma has been conducting research in our group for over three years, and has been co-mentored throughout that time by Dr. Julie Leseberg. Congratulations, Emma!

Funding Sources

Our work is supported by the US Department of Energy, US National Science Foundation, the Chevron Phillips Chemical, Lam Research Corp., and the Spring Creek Fund.