All Publications

  • Millisecond timescale reactions observed via X-ray spectroscopy in a 3D microfabricated fused silica mixer. Journal of synchrotron radiation Huyke, D. A., Ramachandran, A., Ramirez-Neri, O., Guerrero-Cruz, J. A., Gee, L. B., Braun, A., Sokaras, D., Garcia-Estrada, B., Solomon, E. I., Hedman, B., Delgado-Jaime, M. U., DePonte, D. P., Kroll, T., Santiago, J. G. 2021; 28 (Pt 4): 1100-1113


    Determination of electronic structures during chemical reactions remains challenging in studies which involve reactions in the millisecond timescale, toxic chemicals, and/or anaerobic conditions. In this study, a three-dimensionally (3D) microfabricated microfluidic mixer platform that is compatible with time-resolved X-ray absorption and emission spectroscopy (XAS and XES, respectively) is presented. This platform, to initiate reactions and study their progression, mixes a high flow rate (0.50-1.5 ml min-1) sheath stream with a low-flow-rate (5-90 l min-1) sample stream within a monolithic fused silica chip. The chip geometry enables hydrodynamic focusing of the sample stream in3D and sample widths as small as 5 m. The chip is also connected to a polyimide capillary downstream to enable sample stream deceleration, expansion, and X-ray detection. In this capillary, sample widths of 50 m are demonstrated. Further, convection-diffusion-reaction models of the mixer are presented. The models are experimentally validated using confocal epifluorescence microscopy and XAS/XES measurements of a ferricyanide and ascorbic acid reaction. The models additionally enable prediction of the residence time and residence time uncertainty of reactive species as well as mixing times. Residence times (from initiation of mixing to the point of X-ray detection) during sample stream expansion as small as 2.1 ± 0.3 ms are also demonstrated. Importantly, an exploration of the mixer operational space reveals a theoretical minimum mixing time of 0.91 ms. The proposed platform is applicable to the determination of the electronic structure of conventionally inaccessible reaction intermediates.

    View details for DOI 10.1107/S1600577521003830

    View details for PubMedID 34212873

  • Effect of 3d/4p Mixing on 1s2p Resonant Inelastic X-ray Scattering: Electronic Structure of Oxo-Bridged Iron Dimers. Journal of the American Chemical Society Kroll, T., Baker, M. L., Wilson, S. A., Lundberg, M., Juhin, A., Arrio, M., Yan, J. J., Gee, L. B., Braun, A., Weng, T., Sokaras, D., Hedman, B., Hodgson, K. O., Solomon, E. I. 2021


    1s2p resonant inelastic X-ray scattering (1s2p RIXS) has proven successful in the determination of the differential orbital covalency (DOC, the amount of metal vs ligand character in each d molecular orbital) of highly covalent centrosymmetric iron environments including heme models and enzymes. However, many reactive intermediates have noncentrosymmetric environments, e.g., the presence of strong metal-oxo bonds, which results in the mixing of metal 4p character into the 3d orbitals. This leads to significant intensity enhancement in the metal K-pre-edge and as shown here, the associated 1s2p RIXS features, which impact their insight into electronic structure. Binuclear oxo bridged high spin Fe(III) complexes are used to determine the effects of 4p mixing on 1s2p RIXS spectra. In addition to developing the analysis of 4p mixing on K-edge XAS and 1s2p RIXS data, this study explains the selective nature of the 4p mixing that also enhances the analysis of L-edge XAS intensity in terms of DOC. These 1s2p RIXS biferric model studies enable new structural insight from related data on peroxo bridged biferric enzyme intermediates. The dimeric nature of the oxo bridged Fe(III) complexes further results in ligand-to-ligand interactions between the Fe(III) sites and angle dependent features just above the pre-edge that reflect the superexchange pathway of the oxo bridge. Finally, we present a methodology that enables DOC to be obtained when L-edge XAS is inaccessible and only 1s2p RIXS experiments can be performed as in many metalloenzyme intermediates in solution.

    View details for DOI 10.1021/jacs.0c11193

    View details for PubMedID 33730507

  • Tuning the Geometric and Electronic Structure of Synthetic High-Valent Heme Iron(IV)-Oxo Models in the Presence of a Lewis Acid and Various Axial Ligands. Journal of the American Chemical Society Ehudin, M. A., Gee, L. B., Sabuncu, S. n., Braun, A. n., Moënne-Loccoz, P. n., Hedman, B. n., Hodgson, K. O., Solomon, E. I., Karlin, K. D. 2019; 141 (14): 5942–60


    High-valent ferryl species (e.g., (Por)FeIV═O, Cmpd-II) are observed or proposed key oxidizing intermediates in the catalytic cycles of heme-containing enzymes (P-450s, peroxidases, catalases, and cytochrome c oxidase) involved in biological respiration and oxidative metabolism. Herein, various axially ligated iron(IV)-oxo complexes were prepared to examine the influence of the identity of the base. These were generated by addition of various axial ligands (1,5-dicyclohexylimidazole (DCHIm), a tethered-imidazole system, and sodium derivatives of 3,5-dimethoxyphenolate and imidazolate). Characterization was carried out via UV-vis, electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR), 57Fe Mössbauer, Fe X-ray absorption (XAS), and 54/57Fe resonance Raman (rR) spectroscopies to confirm their formation and compare the axial ligand perturbation on the electronic and geometric structures of these heme iron(IV)-oxo species. Mössbauer studies confirmed that the axially ligated derivatives were iron(IV) and six-coordinate complexes. XAS and 54/57Fe rR data correlated with slight elongation of the iron-oxo bond with increasing donation from the axial ligands. The first reported synthetic H-bonded iron(IV)-oxo heme systems were made in the presence of the protic Lewis acid, 2,6-lutidinium triflate (LutH+), with (or without) DCHIm. Mössbauer, rR, and XAS spectroscopic data indicated the formation of molecular Lewis acid ferryl adducts (rather than full protonation). The reduction potentials of these novel Lewis acid adducts were bracketed through addition of outer-sphere reductants. The oxidizing capabilities of the ferryl species with or without Lewis acid vary drastically; addition of LutH+ to F8Cmpd-II (F8 = tetrakis(2,6-difluorophenyl)porphyrinate) increased its reduction potential by more than 890 mV, experimentally confirming that H-bonding interactions can increase the reactivity of ferryl species.

    View details for PubMedID 30860832

  • Mechanism of selective benzene hydroxylation catalyzed by iron-containing zeolites. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America Snyder, B. E., Bols, M. L., Rhoda, H. M., Vanelderen, P., Bottger, L. H., Braun, A., Yan, J. J., Hadt, R. G., Babicz, J. T., Hu, M. Y., Zhao, J., Alp, E. E., Hedman, B., Hodgson, K. O., Schoonheydt, R. A., Sels, B. F., Solomon, E. I. 2018


    A direct, catalytic conversion of benzene to phenol would have wide-reaching economic impacts. Fe zeolites exhibit a remarkable combination of high activity and selectivity in this conversion, leading to their past implementation at the pilot plant level. There were, however, issues related to catalyst deactivation for this process. Mechanistic insight could resolve these issues, and also provide a blueprint for achieving high performance in selective oxidation catalysis. Recently, we demonstrated that the active site of selective hydrocarbon oxidation in Fe zeolites, named alpha-O, is an unusually reactive Fe(IV)=O species. Here, we apply advanced spectroscopic techniques to determine that the reaction of this Fe(IV)=O intermediate with benzene in fact regenerates the reduced Fe(II) active site, enabling catalytic turnover. At the same time, a small fraction of Fe(III)-phenolate poisoned active sites form, defining a mechanism for catalyst deactivation. Density-functional theory calculations provide further insight into the experimentally defined mechanism. The extreme reactivity of alpha-O significantly tunes down (eliminates) the rate-limiting barrier for aromatic hydroxylation, leading to a diffusion-limited reaction coordinate. This favors hydroxylation of the rapidly diffusing benzene substrate over the slowly diffusing (but more reactive) oxygenated product, thereby enhancing selectivity. This defines a mechanism to simultaneously attain high activity (conversion) and selectivity, enabling the efficient oxidative upgrading of inert hydrocarbon substrates.

    View details for PubMedID 30429333