Chemistry
Chemistry Chemistry Chemistry Chemistry Chemistry
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Assitant Professor of Chemistry

Office:   210 CBB
Phone:  406-496-4202
    FAX:  406-496-4135
 Email:  mklem@mtech.edu

B.S., Winona State University, 1992;
Ph.D., Iowa State University, 2002;
Postdoctora, Montana State University, 2002-2009

Courses:

  • CHMY 141:  General Chemistry I
  • CHMY 143:  General Chemsitry II
  • CHMY 372:  Physical Chemistry Laboratory I
  • CHMY 374:  Physcial Chemistry Laboratory II
  • CHMY 401:  Advanced Inorganic Chemistry
  • CHMY 491:  Special Topics in Chemistry (Materials Chemistry)
  • CHMY 494:  Chemistry Seminar
  •    BCH 481:  Biochemistry Laboratory

    Synthesis of complex magnetic nanoparticles

    Core-Shell nanoparticleThe broad goal of this program is to create and study new magnetic materials whose properties (individual cluster moment, anisotropy, etc.) can be independently varied over a broad range. The synthesis and characterization program will elucidate correlations between physical and magnetic properties of the materials on the nanoscale range, and lay a foundation for chemical design of magnetism in these materials through directed nucleation and constrained particle growth. Toward this aim, the exchange bias effect between a ferromagnet and antiferromagnet, soft/hard ferromagnet coupling, and ferromagnet/semiconductor interactions will be exploited to tune the nanoparticles properties. In addition, various particle coatings will be explored to direct particle formation, orientation of magnetic moments, and promote biocompatibility. The incorporation of biomimetic synthetic methods will also be explored to create materials under milder conditions of pH and temperature.

    Multifunctional doped nano-apatites

    ApatiteThe synthesis of functional nano-materials for potential biological applications, such as drug delivery systems and non-invasive cancer imaging, is a burgeoning field that has produced remarkable and consistent breakthroughs over the last decade. Individual particles (polymeric, inorganic or hybrids) have become smaller more defined and shown potential for well defined functionality. Low toxicity, unwanted agglomeration in relevant physiological conditions, higher blood half-lives and tissue and cell specificity have been some of the areas that have received particular attention. However, there are still unresolved problems, such as complicated chemistry involving non-aqueous media and environmentally undesirable reactants, less-than-benign synthesis conditions (high temperature and pressure),  finer control of size and shape, re-dispersion capability and process scale-up to meet commercial demands to name a few.  It is our primary hypothesis that intrinsic properties of an inorganic material system, which can accommodate substantial levels of compositional and structural variation without exhibiting phase changes (e.g. dual oxides such as apatites), can be modulated with adequate substitution employing dopant atoms. The choice of dopants would depend on the kind/extent of property changes that might be desired. Our secondary hypothesis is that the choice of dopant atom can also influence more than one property change, hence promoting multi-functionality.

    Magnetic hyperthermia

    hyperthermiaThe primary aim of this project is the evaluation of previously synthesized superparamagnetic nanoparticles to serve as colloidal mediators for heat generation.  For example, single-domain iron oxide nanoparticles (Fe3O4, magnetite) possesses a global magnetic moment that will undergo changes due to either Brownian fluctuations in the grain itself or internal fluctuations of the magnetic moment with respect to the crystal lattice (Néel fluctuations).  These fluctuations are responsible for the magnetic relaxation that occurs in a suspension of superparamagnetic particles when the magnetic field is removed.  An external AC magnetic field supplies energy that excites these fluctuations, and these magnetic fluctuations are converted into thermal energies.  Therefore, magnetic nanoparticles can serve as nanosources of heat within cellular structures.  Magnetically induced hyperthermia has already been used to kill cancer cells after direct intratumoral injection of iron oxide nanoparticles.