Dan Meisel

Dan Meisel

Radiation- & Photo-Chemistry of Nanoscale Systems


Professor Meisel received his B. Sc. (1967), M. Sc. (1969), and Ph. D. (1974) from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. As postdoctoral fellow at Carnegie-Mellon University he developed methods to determine one-electron redox potentials of short-lived intermediates. He then joined the staff at Argonne National Laboratory, where he studied the reactions of short-lived intermediates in microheterogeneous systems. In 1998 he joined the faculty of Notre Dame. He served as the Director of the Notre Dame Radiation Laboratory until 2004, and he is now a member of the Chemistry & Biochemistry Department and the Rad Lab faculty.

Research Interests

We are interested in processes that are initiated by light or by ionizing radiation. We focus on processes that involve nanoparticles and nanostructures and the effect of the interfaces of these structures on reactions of short-lived intermediates. While our research is of fundamental interest, we direct it towards issues that are of contemporary interest in energy conversion and the consequences of energy utilization. Thus, we apply the basic knowledge that we generate towards solar energy conversion, nuclear energy and the nuclear waste that it generates, handling fissile materials and their utility in radiotherapy and environmental remediation.
Energy Deposition in Nanoparticles: The absorption of ionizing energy in aqueous suspensions of nanoparticles creates electron/hole pairs in the two media, the solvent and the particles. Several competing processes then ensue: charge trapping in eitherone of the media, charge recombination and annihilation of the carriers, and escape of charge carriers from one phase to the other, e.g., from the nanoparticle to the aqueous suspensions. We determine the relative importance of these processes and attempt to control them.
Radical – Particle Interactions: When a radical is generated in the aqueous phase it may encounter a particle during its diffusional course. An adsorbed molecule at the solid surface, on the other hand, may capture an electron that escapes from the solid particle and thus be converted to a radical at the interface. How does this radical look like? Does it depend on properties of the solid particle? Does the electron remain localized on the molecules or is it shared with the particle? In our studies we determine the electronic structure of radical at the interface and the parameters that control that structure.
Radical Reactions in Homogeneous and Heterogeneous Phases - The presence of interfaces between quantum size particles and solution electrolytes significantly affects the dynamics of many processes. Reactions mechanisms of short-lived intermediates among themselves and with organic substrates are studied and their various pathways outlined. A broad array of pulse radiolysis, laser-flash photolysis and steady state irradiation in conjunction with computational modeling are utilized in these studies as we establish the fundamental constraints that control the kinetics of interfacial processes of short-lived intermediates.
Solar Energy Conversion and Environmental Implications - The scientific research directions mentioned above are of explicit implication to the conversion of solar energy into chemicals and to environmental effects of energy utilization. We incorporate the scientific results obtained from fundamental studies of energy deposition and interfacial charge transfer directly into technological issues of national importance to energy production and its consequences.

Recent Papers

  • "Redox Catalysis on “Naked” Silver Nanoparticles," Getahun Merga, Robert Wilson, Geoffrey Lynn, Bratoljub H. Milosavljevic, and Dan Meisel, J. Phys. Chem. C 111, 12220-6 (2007).
  • “Radiolytic Yields in Aqueous Suspensions of Gold Particles“, G. Merga, B. H. Milosavljevic, D. Meisel, J. Phys. Chem. B 110, 5403-8 (2006).
  • "Effect of Silica-Supported Silver Nanoparticles on Dihydrogen Yields from Irradiated Aqueous Solutions," Tomer Zidki, Haim Cohen, Dan Meyerstein and Dan Meisel. J. Phys. Chem. C 111, 10461-6 (2007)
  • “The Role of Water on Electron-Initiated Processes and Radical Chemistry: Issues and Scientific Advances“, Bruce C. Garrett, et al., Chem. Rev., 105, 355-90, (2005).
  • "Probing Silver Nanoparticles During Catalytic H2 Evolution", Getahun Merga, Laura C. Cass, Daniel M. Chipman, and Dan Meisel, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 130, 7067-76 (2008).
  • “Yields and Migration Distances of Reducing Equivalents in the Radiolysis of Silica Nanoparticles“, Bratoljub H. Milosavljevic, Simon M. Pimblott and Dan Meisel, J. Phys. Chem. B 108, 6996-7001 (2004).

Contact Information