Dr. Anatoly Frenkel, professor of physics at Yeshiva University, is part of a team of scientists who have received a National Science Foundation grant under the White House’s Materials Genome Initiative to study nanoparticle catalysis.

Anatoly Frenkel“The goal of this project is to develop computational tools and experimental methods to design, characterize, and understand the function of nanoparticle (NP) catalysts,” said Frenkel. “It is becoming widely recognized that computer simulations can play an increasingly important role in the design of new materials.  Among many examples our group focuses on nanoparticles that are excellent catalysts for many chemical reactions, but their catalytic mechanisms are not well understood, impeding the design of new and better catalysts.  Our collaborative team will combine computational tools for predicting novel materials in the fields of photovoltaic materials, Li-ion batteries, and catalysts.”

Frenkel along with Professors Richard M. Crooks and Graeme Henkelman  of the University of Texas at Austin  and Professor Judith Chun-Hsu Yang of the University of Pittsburgh hope to develop a toolkit for the design of new nanoparticle catalysts for energy applications. YU will receive $270,000 over the course of three years for postdoctoral grant-related research under Professor Frenkel’s supervision.

In addition, Frenkel recently published an article in Nature Communications, a high-impact natural sciences journal—his second publication in the journal in two months. Titled “Catalysis on singly dispersed bimetallic sites,” the article explores a method to develop catalysts with high selectivity.

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