Ian Carmichael

Ian Carmichael

Theoretical Radiation Chemistry and Photochemistry


Professor Carmichael received his BSc and PhD from the University of Glasgow, Scotland in 1971 and 1974 respectively. He spent two years at the University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands on a British Royal Society Science Exchange Fellowship. He joined the Notre Dame Radiation Laboratory in 1976 and was appointed Director in 2004

Research Interests

Ionizing radiation pervades our environment and affects all life on earth. The absorption of this impinging energy produces profound chemical and biochemical transformations in the materials irradiated. Professor Carmichael's research provides a fundamental molecular-level understanding of these radiation effects in matter.
The work is performed in the Notre Dame Radiation Laboratory, the premier facility for radiation chemical research in the US, supported by the Chemical Sciences Division of Basic Energy Sciences at the US Department of Energy. The NDRL provides not only access to unique experimental tools but also outstanding research opportunities for focused interdisciplinary collaborations. Knowledge gained from this research provides the scientific basis for solving problems ranging from the chemical conversion of solar energy, through nuclear energy production, environmental waste management and remediation, to biomedical radiation therapy.

Specific topics currently under active investigation include:
Radiation damage in protein crystallography
Understanding and mitigating radiation damage during macromolecular crystallography at synchrotrons
Electron-driven processes in condensed phases

Excited species in water radiolysis; radical formation in irradiated organic liquids
Radiation effects in heterogeneous systems and at interfaces

Characterizing radiation chemistry at water - ceramic oxide interfaces
Spin coupling in biomolecular NMR
Probing conformational and chemical changes in carbohydrates

Recent Papers

  • Bury, C.; McGeehan, J.E.; Antson, A.; Carmichael, I.; Gerstel, M.; Shevtsov, M.; Garman, E.F. "RNA protects a nucleoprotein complex against radiation damage." Acta Crystallogr. 2016, D72, 648-657.
  • Hadad, M.J.; Zhang, W.; Turney, T.; Sernau, L.; Wang, X.; Woods, R.; Incandela, A.; Surjancev, I.; Wang, A.; Yoon, M-K.; Coscia, A.; Euell, C.; Meredith, R.; Carmichael, I.; Serianni, A.S. "NMR Spin-Couplings in Saccharides: Relationships Between Structure, Conformation, and the Magnitudes of JHH, JCH and JCC Values." NMR in Glycoscience and Glycotechnology, K. Katos and T. Peters, Eds. 2016. Royal Society of Chemistry.
  • Bury, C.; Carmichael, I.; McGeehan, J.E.; Garman, E.F. "Radiation damage with nucleoprotein complexes studied by macromolecular X-ray crystallography." Radiat. Phys. Chem. 2016 [DOI 10.1016/j.radphyschem.2016.05.023]
  • Bury, C.; Garman, E.F.; Ginn, H.M.; Ravelli, R.B.G.; Carmichael, I.; Kneale, G.; McGeehan, J.E. "Radiation damage to nucleoprotein complexes in macromolecular crystallography." J. Synchotron Radiat. 2015, 22, 213-224.
  • Dawley, M.M.; Tanzer, K.; Carmichael, I.; Denifl, S.; Ptasinska, S. "Dissociative electron attachment to the gas-phase nucleobase hypoxanthine." J. Chem. Phys. 2015, 142, 21501.
  • Klepach, T.; Zhao, H.; Hu, X.; Zhang, W.; Stenutz, R.; Hadad, M.J.; Carmichael, I.; Serianni, A.S. "Informing saccharide structural NMR studies with density functional theory calculations." Methods in Molecular Biology: Glycoinformatics 2015, Humana Press, 289-331.

Contact Information

  • Professor and Director Radiation Laboratory
  • Office: 321 Radiation Research Building
  • Phone: 574-631-4502
  • Send an email
  • Visit Website

Primary Research Areas

Research Specialties