Carnegie Mellon University Department of Chemistry
photo of Rongchao Jin

Rongchao Jin


Carnegie Mellon University


Phone: (412) 268-9448

Fax: (412) 268-1061

Office: Mellon Institute 543

group website

Faculty & Research

Rongchao Jin


Research Areas

Nanoscience, Nanoparticles, Synthesis, Catalysis, Optics

Nanoparticles: Small Wanders, Endless Frontiers

Our research focuses on fundamental science and engineering questions motivated by the creation of materials on the nanometer scale (1 nm=10-9 m). Our research themes include the synthesis, characterization, and applications of nanoparticles (typically 1-100 nm in size). We are developing chemical methods for synthesizing well defined nanoparticles, including atomically precise nanoclusters, shape- and size-controlled nanocrystals, hybrid nano-architectures, and inorganic/polymer nanocomposites. In-depth characterizations of the physical and chemical properties of nanoparticles and self-assembled nanomaterials are carried out with microscopy and spectroscopy techniques, such as electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy, X-ray crystallography, steady-state and ultrafast spectroscopies, etc. We also develop applications of nanoparticles in areas of catalysis, optics, chemo- and bio-sensing, and photovoltaics, etc.

Education and Appointments
2012–present Associate Professor of Chemistry, Carnegie Mellon University
2006–2012 Assistant Professor of Chemistry, Carnegie Mellon University
2003–2006 Research Associate, James Franck Institute at the University of Chicago
1999–2003 Ph.D. Chemistry, Northwestern University
Awards and Distinctions
2011 International Precious Metals Institute Student Advisor Award
2011 Camille and Henry Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award
Selected Publications

Das, A.; Li, T.; Nobusada, K.; Zeng, Q.; Rosi, N. L.; Jin, R. “Total Structure and Optical Properties of a Phosphine/Thiolate-Protected Au24 Nanocluster”, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2012, 134, 20286.

Zeng, C.; Qian, H.; Li, T.; Li, G.; Rosi, N. L.; Yoon, B.; Barnett, R. N.; Whetten, R. L.; Landman, U.; Jin, R. “Total Structure and Electronic Properties of the Gold Nanocrystal Au36(SR)24”, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2012, 51, 13114.

Li, G.; Liu, C.; Lei, Y.; Jin, R. “Au25 Nanocluster-catalyzed Ullmann-type Homocoupling Reaction of Aryl Iodides”, Chem. Commun. 2012, 48, 12005.

Kumar, S.; Jin, R. “Water-Soluble Au25(Capt)18 Nanoclusters: Synthesis, Thermal Stability, and Optical Properties”, Nanoscale 2012, 4, 4222.

Qian, H.; Zhu, Y.; Jin, R. “Atomically Precise Gold Nanocrystal Molecules with Surface Plasmon Resonance”, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 2012, 109, 696.

Qian, H.; Sfeir, M. Y.; Jin, R “Ultrafast Relaxation Dynamics of [Au25(SR)18]q Nanoclusters: Effects of Charge State”J. Phys. Chem. C 2010, 114, 19935.

Garg, N.; Mohanty, A.; Lazarus, N.; Schultz, L.; Rozzi, T. R.; Santhanam, S.; Weiss, L.; Snyder, J. L.; Fedder, G. K.; Jin, R. “Robust gold nanoparticles stabilized by trithiol for application in chemiresistive sensors”, Nanotechnology 2010, 21, 405501.

Zhu, Y.; Qian, H.; Drake, B. A.; Jin, R. “Atomically Precise Au25(SR)18 Nanoparticles as Catalysts for Selective Hydrogenation of α, β-Unsaturated Ketones and Aldehydes” Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2010, 49, 1295.

Mohanty, A.; Garg, N.; Jin, R. “A Universal Approach for the Synthesis of Noble Metal Nanodendrites and Their Catalytic Properties” Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2010, 49, 4962.

Qian, H.; Eckenhoff, W. T.; Zhu, Y.; Pintauer, T.; Jin, R. “Total Structure Determination of Thiolate-Protected Au38 Nanoparticles” J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2010, 132, 8280.

Qian, H.; Jin, R. “Controlling Nanoparticles with Atomic Precision: The Case of Au144(SCH2CH2Ph)60”, Nano Lett. 2009, 9, 4083.

Wu, Z.; Suhan, J.; Jin, R. “One-Pot Synthesis of Atomically Monodisperse, Thiol-Functionalized Au25 Nanoclusters” J. Mater. Chem. 2009, 19, 622.

Zhu, M.; Aikens, C. M.; Hollander, F. J.; Schatz, G. C.; Jin, R. “Correlating the Crystal Structure of A Thiol-Protected Au25 Cluster and Optical Properties” J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2008, 130, 5883.

Zhu, M.; Lanni, E.; Garg, N.; Bier, M. E.; Jin, R. “Kinetically Controlled, High-Yield Synthesis of Au25 Clusters” J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2008, 130, 1138.