|Post:||Department of Chemistry|
|Memorial University of Newfoundland|
|St. John's, NL A1B 3X7 CANADA|
Our research focus is on the physical chemistry--structure, thermochemistry, and reactivity (fragmentation pathways and uni- and bi-molecular kinetics)--of bare and hydrated metal ion coordinated biological ions, such as amino acids, peptides, nucleobases, and carbohydrates, in the gas phase. One of the main goals is to determine the 3-dimensional structure of these ionic complexes which contain strong ionic hydrogen bonding. These types of intermolecular and intramolecular non-covalent interactions are abundant in nature. By studying solvated clusters we will also be able to more fully understand the effect of solvent, such as water, on the structures of biologically relevant ions.
One of the main, and unique, experimental methods we use to probe the structures of these trapped gas phase ions is infrared multiple photon dissociation (IRMPD) spectroscopy. IRMPD spectroscopy employs a Fourier Transform Ion Cyclotron Mass Spectrometer (FTICR-MS) and a tunable infrared laser. Computation methods such as electronic structure calculations and simulated annealing are used to help extract information from our experimental studies. We also use Blackbody Infrared Radiative Dissociation (BIRD) to determine binding energies of ion-molecule complexes, as well as typical mass spectrometric activation techniques such as collision induced dissociation and energy-resolved collision induced dissociation. We are also interested in gas-phase ion-molecule reactions of metal cationized complexes with small molecules. A cross section of our previous research interests can be seen on our publications link.