Carnegie Mellon University Department of Chemistry
photo of Kevin Noonan

Kevin Noonan

Associate Professor

Carnegie Mellon University

(412) 268-3128

Fax: (412) 268-1061

office: MI 849A

group website

Faculty & Research

Kevin Noonan

Associate Professor

Research Areas

Polymer chemistry, organometallics, homogeneous catalysis, organophosphorus chemistry

Research in our group is focused on the synthesis of new compounds possessing main group elements to impact polymer chemistry and catalysis. The advent of synthetic polymer chemistry has had an enormous impact on our modern world. Though most commercial polymeric materials are made from organic synthons, the incorporation of main group elements or transition metals into polymer backbones can afford materials with unique properties. The synthetic preparation of these materials remains challenging and continued development will result in unique macromolecular architectures. New design strategies to incorporate inorganic elements such as boron and phosphorus into electronic materials will be explored.

The chemistry of transition metals and their use as catalysts to install functionality while controlling regio- and stereochemistry remains an important challenge in chemical synthesis. Sophisticated ligand design can offer mechanistic insight to known reactions while also leading to new catalytic activity. Our research group aims to build unique ligand frameworks using organophosphorus chemistry and apply these in catalyst systems. Many areas of catalysis will be explored including polyolefin synthesis and the development of methodologies to prepare functional organic substrates.

Education and Appointments
Years Position or Degree
2017–present Associate Professor of Chemistry, Carnegie Mellon University
2011–2017 Assistant Professor of Chemistry, Carnegie Mellon University
2008–2011 Postdoctoral Fellow, Cornell University
2003–2008 Ph.D. in Chemistry, University of British Columbia
Awards and Distinctions
Years Award
2015 NSF Career Award
2013 Army Research Office Young Investigator Award
2009–2011 NSERC Postdoctoral Fellowship
2006–2008 NSERC Postgraduate Scholarship (Doctoral Level)
2005–2006 NSERC Postgraduate Scholarship (Masters Level)
Selected Publications

Qiu, Y.; Worch, J. W.; Fortney, A.; Gayathri, C.; Gil, R. R.; Noonan, K. J. T. Nickel-Catalyzed Suzuki Polycondensation for Controlled Synthesis of Ester-Functionalized Conjugated Polymers. Macromolecules. 2016, 49, 4757-4762.

Tsai, C.-H.; Fortney, A.; Qiu, Y.; Gil, R. R.; Yaron, D. Kowalewski, T.; Noonan, K. J. T. Conjugated Polymers with Repeated Sequences of Group 16 Heterocycles Synthesized through Catalyst-​Transfer Polycondensation. Journal of the American Chemical Society, 2016, 138, 6798–6804.

Qiu, Y.; Fortney, A.; Tsai, C.-H.; Baker, M. A.; Kowalewski, T.; Noonan, K. J. T. Synthesis of Polyfuran and Thiophene-Furan Alternating Copolymers Using Catalyst-Transfer Polycondensation. ACS Macro Letters 2016, 5, 332-336.

Womble, C. T.; Coates, G. W.; Matyjaszewski, K.; Noonan, K. J. T. Tetrakis(dialkylamino)phosphonium Polyelectrolytes Prepared by Reversible Addition Fragmentation Chain Transfer Polymerization. ACS Macro Letters 2016, 5, 253-257.

Worch, J. C.; Hellemann, E.; Pros, G.; Gayathri, C.; Pintauer, T.; Gil, R. R.; Noonan, K. J. T. Stability and Reactivity of 1,​3-​Benzothiaphosphole: Metalation and Diels-​Alder Chemistry. Organometallics 2015, 34, 5366-5373.

Tsai, C.-H.; Chirdon, D. N.; Kagalwala, H. N.; Maurer, A. B.; Kaur, A.; Pintauer, T.; Bernhard, S.; Noonan, K. J. T. Electron-​poor thiophene 1,​1-​dioxides: synthesis, characterization, and application as electron relays in photocatalytic hydrogen generation. Chemistry — A European Journal 2015, 21, 11517-11524.

Qiu, Y.; Mohin, J.; Tsai, C.-H.; Tristram-Nagle, S.; Gil, R. R.; Kowalewski, T.; Noonan, K. J. T. Stille catalyst-transfer polycondensation using Pd-PEPPSI-IPr for high molecular weight regioregular poly(3-hexylthiophene). Macromolecular Rapid Communications 2015, 36,840-844.

Qiu, Y.; Worch, J. C.; Chirdon, D. N.; Kaur, A.; Maurer, A. B.; Amsterdam, S.; Collins, C. R.; Pintauer, T.; Yaron, D.; Bernhard, S.; Noonan, K. J. T. Tuning thiophene with phosphorus: synthesis and electronic properties of benzobisthiaphospholes. Chemistry — A European Journal 2014, 20, 7746-7751.

Schröder, K.; Matyjaszewski, K.; Noonan, K. J. T.; Mathers, R. T. Towards sustainable polymer chemistry with homogeneous metal-based catalysts. Green Chemistry 2014, 16, 1673-1686.

Tsai, C.-H.; Chirdon, D. N.; Maurer, A. B.; Bernhard, S.; Noonan, K. J. T. Synthesis of thiophene 1,1-dioxides and tuning their optoelectronic properties. Organic Letters 2013, 15, 5230-5233.

Worch, J. C.; Chirdon, D. N.; Maurer, A. B.; Qiu, Y.; Geib, S. J.; Bernhard, S.; Noonan, K. J. T. Synthetic tuning of electronic and photophysical properties of 2-aryl-1,3-benzothiaphospholes. Journal of Organic Chemistry 2013, 78, 7462–7469.