002 Chemistry Building
B.S., University of Rochester, 1985
Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley, 1992
N. Tsomaia, S. L. Brantley, J. P. Hamilton, C. G. Pantano, and
K. T. Mueller, “NMR Evidence for Formation of Octahedral and Tetrahedral Al and
Repolymerization of the Si Network During Dissolution of Aluminosilicate Glass
and Crystal”, American Mineralogist 88, 54-67 (2003)
R. Fry, N. Tsomaia, C. G. Pantano, and K. T. Mueller, “19F
MAS NMR Quantification of Accessible Hydroxyl Sites on Fiberglass Surfaces”, Journal of the American Chemical Society
125, 2378-2379 (2003).
R. Fry, C. G. Pantano, and K. T. Mueller, “Effect of
Boron-Oxide on Surface Hydroxyl Coverage Of Aluminoborosilicate Glass
Fibers: A 19F Solid-State NMR
Study”, Physics and Chemistry of Glasses
44, 64-68 (2003).
S. Prabakar, C. G. Pantano, and K. T. Mueller,
“Intermediate-Range Order in Barium Aluminoborate Glasses from Heteronuclear
Correlation NMR Experiments”, Physics and
Chemistry of Glasses 44, 125-131 (2003).
G. M. Bowers, A. S. Lipton, and K. T. Mueller, “High-Field
QCPMG NMR of Strontium Nuclei in Natural Minerals”, Solid-State NMR 29,
R. A. Fry, K. Kwon, J. D. Kubicki, and K. T. Mueller, “A Solid-State NMR and
Computational Chemistry Study of Mononucleotides Adsorbed to Alumina”, Langmuir 22, 9281-9286 (2006).
K. A. Denkenberger, R. A. Bowers, A. D. Jones, and K. T.
Mueller, “NMR Studies of the Thermal Degradation of a Perfluoropolyether on the
Surfaces of g-Alumina and Kaolinite”, Langmuir 23, 8855-8860 (2007).
G. M. Bowers, M. C. Davis, R. Ravella, S. Komarneni, and K. T.
Mueller, “NMR Studies of Heat-Induced Transitions in Structure and Cation
Binding Environments in Strontium-Saturated Swelling Mica”, Applied Magnetic Resonance 32, 595-612 (2007).
M. Washton, S. L. Brantley, and K. T. Mueller, “Probing the Molecular-Level
Control of Aluminosilicate Dissolution: A Sensitive Solid-State NMR Proxy for
Reactive Surface Area”, Geochimica et
Cosmochimica Acta 72, 5949-5961 (2008).
Development of experimental and theoretical techniques for solid-state
NMR spectroscopy; magic-angle spinning and higher-order averaging of
quadrupolar spectra; coherence transfer and dipolar-dephasing dynamics in
solid-state NMR; chemistry and reactivity of complex oxide surfaces; transport
of radionuclides in the environment; cyberinfrstructure for environmental
Solid-State NMR Spectroscopy of Complex Materials
The research in Professor Mueller's group focuses on the
development and utilization of solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (SSNMR) spectroscopic
techniques, and is driven by outstanding and unresolved questions in materials
and environmental science that require advanced characterization tools. In these studies, Professor Mueller's group exploits
the molecular–level specificity of NMR, and couples this with increased
sensitivity, enhanced precision and accuracy, and superior spectral resolution
afforded by the use of innovative pulse sequences, novel experimental design,
and critical advances in ultra-high field magnet technology. Professor Mueller and his students leverage knowledge
in chemistry and skills in NMR to push forward leading-edge scientific research
and exploration both within their group and by forming collaborations with
chemists, geochemists, materials scientists, engineers, and information
Professor Mueller and his research group have begun in-depth
studies of the reactivity of oxide surfaces, a complex scientific issue related
to such technical considerations as stability of surfaces, weathering in either
harsh or mild environments, and bonding of chemical species for industrial
applications. In the latter case, they
are interested both in the attachment of organic polymers to surfaces through
reactive binders, and the interaction of organics and biomolecules (particularly
DNA) with surfaces. They have also undertaken
studies of the changing chemical speciation at surfaces of phosphate,
aluminoborosilicate, and aluminosilicate glasses. These studies required the use of more
advanced, heteronuclear correlation SSNMR methods, as well as specialized techniques
such as multiple-quantum magic-angle spinning (MQMAS) NMR.
Professor Mueller and his group are also engaged in
fundamental work to understand the transport of pollutants in the
environment. In research sponsored by
the Department of Energy, they have used multiple field NMR (including work
carried out on 750, 800, and 900 MHz spectrometer systems at Pacific Northwest
National Laboratories) for the identification of reaction products when clay
minerals and Hanford sediments are subjected to simulated tank waste leachates
containing cesium and strontium cations. More recently, the issue of strontium
sequestration in altered phases has risen to the forefront of their
investigations, and they have pushed the development and use of high-field and
ultra-high-field NMR techniques for the investigation of strontium bound in
inorganic minerals and aluminosilicate phases.
This work is now moving forward with ties to reactive transport
modeling, as well as large-scale computations.
Environmental Kinetics Anaylsis
Research interests in Professor Mueller's group have more
recently turned to the use of cyberinfrastructure for increasing our scientific
capabilities, especially in the area of environmental kinetics measurements and
modeling. Professor Mueller is the lead
PI of a multi-million dollar project sponsored by the National Science
Foundation (entitled “Developing Collaboratory Tools to Facilitate
Multi-Disciplinary, Multi-Scale Research in Environmental Molecular Sciences”),
where he and his collaborators are developing the software and infrastructure
to collect, analyze, and distribute data to scientists working on environmental
chemistry problems. Professor Mueller has
also joined a multi-university and international research project funded by
Microsoft Research focused on data aggregation and re-use. The oreChem project
includes Penn State, Cornell, Indiana, Southampton, and Cambridge Universities,
and the oreChem team is proposing a common model for representing chemical data,
developing a set of interchange protocols, and launching a suite of data
extraction and data capture tools. These
advances will enable an eChemistry web – a semantic graph with embedded
sub-graphs representing (for example) molecules, which are then inter-related
to publications that refer to them, experiments that work with them, the
contexts of these experiments, the researchers working with these compounds,
annotations about these papers and experiments, and the like.