William Schneider

William Schneider

Computational Catalysis & Environmental Chemistry


Chair, Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, University of Notre Dame
Professor, Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, University of Notre Dame
Concurrent Professor, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Notre Dame
Associate Professor, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Notre Dame
Ford Motor Company
Ph.D., Ohio State University
B.Sc., University of Michigan-Dearborn

Selected Awards

Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
BP Foundation Outstanding Teacher Award for the College of Engineering, University of Notre Dame

Research Interests

Professor Schneider's group applies state-of-the-art first-principles molecular simulation tools, based primarily on density functional theory (DFT), to study a range of problems in heterogeneous surface reactivity and catalysis. These quantum-mecahnics-based calculations take advantage of some of the latest and most powerful computers available to produce accurate predictions of chemical structure, energetics, and reactivity for systems that were impossible to study even just a few years ago. Statistical thermodynamics and kinetics provide the links to macroscopic prediction. The simulations are coupled with simple but powerful concepts of chemical structure and bonding—key to both the effective use of the tools and extraction of useful physical insight. The group partners closely with experimentalists both to validate results and to provide an avenue for their rapid application.

Current research focuses on heterogeneous reactivity at metal and metal-oxide surfaces. This type of reactivity is common to many environmental processes and underpins many technologies used to mitigate or eliminate the impacts of society on the environment, especially activities related to the production and consumption of energy. Some examples include catalytic removal of emissions from combustion exhaust, catalytic conversion of petroleum fuels, solid-state gas sensing, and fuel cell catalysis. Understanding gained at the molecular level allows us to better control-and ultimately to tailor-chemical systems to perform functions more cleanly, efficiently, and durably. The research group is highly interdsciplinary, cutting across the traditional boundaries of chemical engineering, chemistry, physics, environmental science, materials science, and the emerging field of nanoscience.

Recent Publications

  • Kester, P. M., Crum, J. T., Li, S., Schneider, W. F., Gounder, R. "Effects of Brønsted acid site proximity in chabazite zeolites on OH infrared spectra and protolytic propane cracking kinetics" 2021 Journal of Catalysis, 395, pp. 210-226. DOI:10.1016/j.jcat.2020.12.038.
  • Bogaerts, A., Tu, X., Whitehead, J. C., Centi, G., Lefferts, L., Guaitella, O., Azzolina-Jury, F., Kim, H. -., Murphy, A. B., Schneider, W. F., Nozaki, T., Hicks, J. C., Rousseau, A., Thevenet, F., Khacef, A., Carreon, M. "The 2020 plasma catalysis roadmap" 2020 Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics, 53 (44), 443001. DOI:10.1088/1361-6463/ab9048.
  • Di Iorio, J. R., Li, S., Jones, C. B., Nimlos, C. T., Wang, Y., Kunkes, E., Vattipalli, V., Prasad, S., Moini, A., Schneider, W. F., Gounder, R. "Cooperative and Competitive Occlusion of Organic and Inorganic Structure-Directing Agents within Chabazite Zeolites Influences Their Aluminum Arrangement" 2020 Journal of the American Chemical Society, 142 (10), pp. 4807-4819. DOI:10.1021/jacs.9b13817.
  • Engelmann, Y., Mehta, P., Neyts, E. C., Schneider, W. F., Bogaerts, A. "Predicted Influence of Plasma Activation on Nonoxidative Coupling of Methane on Transition Metal Catalysts" 2020 ACS Sustainable Chemistry and Engineering, 8 (15), pp. 6043-6054. DOI:10.1021/acssuschemeng.0c00906.
  • Jones, C. B., Khurana, I., Krishna, S. H., Shih, A. J., Delgass, W. N., Miller, J. T., Ribeiro, F. H., Schneider, W. F., Gounder, R. "Effects of dioxygen pressure on rates of NOx selective catalytic reduction with NH3 on Cu-CHA zeolites" 2020 Journal of Catalysis, 389 pp. 140-149. DOI:10.1016/j.jcat.2020.05.022.
  • Ko, J., Muhlenkamp, J. A., Bonita, Y., Libretto, N. J., Miller, J. T., Hicks, J. C., Schneider, W. F. "Experimental and Computational Investigation of the Role of P in Moderating Ethane Dehydrogenation Performance over Ni-Based Catalysts" 2020 Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research, 59 (28), pp. 12666-12676. DOI:10.1021/acs.iecr.0c00908.

Contact Information

  • Dorini Family Chair of Energy Studies, Concurrent Professor
  • Office: 180 Fitzpatrick Hall of Engineering
  • Phone: 574-631-8754
  • Send an email
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Primary Research Areas

Research Specialties