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  • Professor Skye Fortier
    04/30/19 - 9:45 AM to 10:45 AM

    Department Seminar: Professor Skye Fortier

    Department Seminar

Metal-Arenes as Low-Valent Synthons

A defining quality of the early-metals and the actinide elements is their propensity to readily undergo oxidation to achieve high-valency states. In an effort to further expand the reactivity profile of these elements, we have been investigating the reduction chemistry of titanium and uranium. For instance, treatment of the guanidinate complex (ketguan)(ImN)Ti(OTf)2 with potassium graphite generates the intramolecularly arene-masked titanium compound (ketguan)(η6-ImN)Ti, which behaves as a potent two-electron reductant that is capable of activating C-H bonds. This reactivity and more will be presented. Additionally, we have been examining pathways for the synthesis of uranium-arene complexes, and our progress in this area will be discussed.

Open Forum

4:30 p.m.
Tuesday, April 30

Kate & Michael Bárány Conference Room
(117/119 Smith Hall)
There is No Place Like Home
Obstacles Hispanic students face when applying to graduate school.
Co-hosted by the Department of Chemistry Diversity & Inclusion Committee


Research in the Professor Fortier's laboratory is largely driven by fundamental scientific and chemical curiosity in the basic sciences – particularly in the area of molecular inorganic chemistry. The group's research activities focus on “pushing the envelope” by examining the chemistry of metals in unusually low oxidations states and in unusual coordination environments. From this work, researchers have made new discoveries with implications towards traditionally challenging reactions such as C-H activation chemistry. Other research interests include the activation of small molecules as well as tackling energy related problems using photoactive metal complexes. The Fortier laboratory is adept in the synthesis, purification, crystallization, handling, and characterization of air and water sensitive molecules and paramagnetic complexes.

Professor Fortier

Professor Fortier is a native of the desert Southwest, born and raised in El Paso. As an undergraduate, he attended the University of Texas at El Paso, where he received an National Institutes of Health MARC (Minority Access to Research Careers) scholarship. As a MARC scholar, Fortier investigated the photochemically induced formation of carbon-silicon bonds utilizing ‘Fp’ precursors (Fp = CpFe(CO)2). After graduating with a bachelor's degree in chemistry from UTEP in 2005, he worked at Irvin High School, teaching integrated physics and chemistry, and chemistry courses. Interested in inorganic chemistry, he entered the graduate program at the University of California, Santa Barbara, in 2006, and investigated the organometallic chemistry of uranium. His studies in the Hayton laboratory focused on the synthesis of high-valent homoleptic molecules and uranium complexes featuring metal-ligand multiple bonds. After graduating with his doctorate in 2011, he worked as a post-doctoral researcher at Indiana University. As a National Science Foundation American Competitiveness in Chemistry Postdoctoral Research Fellow, he investigated the synthesis, reactivity, and redox chemistry of iron and cobalt complexes supported by non-innocent, redox-active ‘nindigo’ and pyridylpyrrolide ligand frameworks. Fortier returned to UTEP as professor in the fall of 2013.

  • Event Details

    Location: 331 Smith Hall
    Host: Professor Connie Lu
    • Professor Skye Fortier
    • Syke Fortier
    • Department of Chemistry
    • University of Texas at El Paso