Project Overview

Mechanistic Studies of Ruthenium-Catalyzed Hydrogenation Reactions

Faculty Sponsor

Anthony Chianese (




Research in the Chianese group is in the area of organometallic chemistry, drawing on the fields of organic chemistry and inorganic chemistry. We use a combination of experimental and computational techniques to try to understand how important chemical reactions work at the molecular level. Currently, we are engaged in a National Science Foundation funded project to determine how catalysts for the hydrogenation of esters operate. Working in the Chianese group, students learn a variety of techniques in synthetic organic chemistry, including handling air-sensitive compounds, running reactions under inert atmosphere, purification using chromatography, and characterization of compounds using NMR spectroscopy and X-ray crystallography. Students also have the opportunity to learn how to use computational chemistry to probe the mechanistic pathways of reactions. 

Student Qualifications

Students should have completed General Chemistry at least, and be majoring or intend to major in Chemistry or Biochemistry. Organic Chemistry is helpful but not required. 

Number of Student Researchers

Four total. Two funded by NSF and two by Colgate students

Project Length

10 each weeks

Applications open on 01/03/2021 and close on 03/22/2021

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If you have questions, please contact Karyn Belanger (