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Our research facilities are located in the impressive Mellon Institute building and include world-class instrumentation, computing and libraries. All of the instruments in the department are available for hands-on use, and training is made available to all students. Such ready access to advanced equipment constitutes an important part of the graduate education of Carnegie Mellon students.

Center for Molecular Analysis (CMA)
The Center for Molecular Analysis provides a facility for chemical characterization. The CMA creates an environment for collaborations among scientists both within and between departments.
Instruments in the CMA include:
FTIR/NIR spectrometer (Thermo/ATI/Mattson 60AR) with a Remspec Mid-IR fiber optic immersion probe system.
UV/VIS/NIR spectrometer (Perkin-Elmer Lambda 900) with Hellma fiber optic immersion probes. One probe allows for Visible work and the other probe allows for NIR work.
MALDI/TOF mass spectrometer (PerSeptive Biosystems Voyager DE super-STR) with delayed extraction, two-meter flight tube and a reflectron for the analyses of both synthetic polymers and biomolecules of high molecular weight.
Quadrupole field ion trap mass spectrometer (ThermoFinnigan LCQ) with electrospray (ESI) and atmospheric pressure ionization (APCI) sources.
Diode Array UV-VIS (HP).
CD (Jasco 715).
HPLC Magic 2000–(Michrom Bioresources).
Two new Bruker NMR spectrometers: the 300 and 500 MHz Avance systems. We can perform Multinuclear and Multidimensional NMR Experiments in both Direct and Reverse Detection Mode using Gradient-Assisted Spectroscopy (GRASP). (Funded in part by NSF grant # CHE-9808188)

The CMA website includes further details, rates, and handles on-line reservations for instrument time. For further information, contact Mark Bier,, director of the CMA.

Spectroscopy and Other Instrumentation Facilities
Carnegie Mellon has traditionally been a major center for NMR research and has established an excellent research group in biophysical chemistry. Among the instruments used for characterization, in the CMA and elsewhere in the department are:
A 500 MHz, two 600 MHz multinuclear, and two 300 MHz multinuclear spectrometers
Modern gas and liquid chromatographs
High resolution UV/vis absorption and fluorescence spectrometers
Infrared spectrophotometers (Perkin-Elmer 580, Nicolet FT-IR)
X-band IBM ER-300 EPR spectrophotometer with both X-band bridge and liquid nitrogen and liquid helium low-temperature capabilities
An Aviv magnetic circular dichroism spectrophotometer
Four light scattering photometers coupled with computer-based data acquisition systems
Four rheometers with size exclusion chromatographs, a differential scaning calorimeter, differential refractometers, and member osmometers.

Computing Facilities
The department has ready access to a rich array of state-of-the-art computational facilities, which provide the "cpu-power" for forefront computational research in quantum chemistry, statistical mechanics, molecular dynamics, biophysics, solid-state physics, nuclear chemistry and X-ray crystallography.

Most work in the department is done on 25 high-end multi-processor Pentium workstations donated by Intel Corporation as part of their Technology for Education 2000 program. These workstations have either two or four processors, between 128MB and 512Mb of memory and between 4 and 9Gb of UltraSCSI hard drive space. The department also has 15 Digital Alpha workstations.

The department also has access to a Linux/NT cluster consisting of 20 quad-processor workstations, with 1GB of RAM and 9Gb of UltaSCSI hard drive space. This cluster is housed in the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center (PSC). The PSC has recently received a $45 million grant for terascale computing.

Facilities for education in the application of computational methods to problems in science are also available to faculty and students in the Chemistry Department. Together with the Department of Biological Sciences and the PSC, the department runs a facility specifically designed for training in the use of computers for research in chemistry, biology and physics. This facility, funded partially through grants from the Howard Hughes Foundation and the National Science Foundation, includes a "computer classroom" with 25 Silicon Graphics workstations. Students taking classes in computational chemistry and biology, as well as specialized computational workshops, utilize this unique facility to gain experience in the design and application of software for the modeling and display of diverse phenomena in chemistry, physics and biology.

Aside from facilities in support of computational research and education, every office and laboratory in the Department of Chemistry is connected to the campus-wide Andrew system. The Andrew system provides all students and faculty unlimited access to advanced workstation clusters located throughout the campus. Mellon Institute and Doherty Hall also support wireless computing. Questions about departmental computing facilities can be directed to Drew Potratz at

The Mellon Institute Library, located in the same building as the Chemistry Department, provides convenient access to over 90,000 volumes and journals. The nearby Engineering and Science Library holds an additional 300,000+ volumes (includes both journals and other materials). Finally, Carnegie Mellon faculty and students may use the University of Pittsburgh libraries just a few blocks away.

photo of Mellon Institute Library

•  Center for Molecular Analysis (CMA) website
•  Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center (PSC)
   •  Linux/NT cluster
   •  Terascale Computing
•  Mellon Institute Library
•  Mellon Institute building

Carnegie Mellon University | Mellon College of Science | Department of Chemistry

Department of Chemistry
Carnegie Mellon University
4400 Fifth Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
(412) 268-1062