Probing new and novel chemistry
Our group makes fundamental contributions to understanding the bonding, reactivity and properties of main group and metal containing molecules. This work has a predictive component, in that we aim to predict and develop new chemistry. We are particularly interested in chemistry with unusual and novel bonding environments.
For example, we have recently proposed the first ligand stabilized C2 diatomic molecule, with ligands of N-heterocyclic carbenes or phosphines (which has subsequently been synthesized). One aspect of this work is to predict stable forms of 'unstable' molecules, such as the cyclopentadiene cation. We are also interested in exploring beryllium chemistry, which is difficult to carry out experimentally due to the toxicity of beryllium. We also explore reactivity to understand mechanisms, which will enable future predictions of reactivity (and products of reactions).