Rice University logo

Kenton H. Whitmire

Associate Dean, Academic Affairs, Wiess School of Natural Sciences; Interim Chair of the Department of Kinesiology
Professor of Chemistry

The Whitmire research group has a range of interests in synthetic, structural and mechanistic inorganic and organometallic chemistry. A long term effort has been aimed at understanding how the incorporation of p-block elements into transition metal clusters affects their structure, bonding and reactivity patterns. These studies bear on catalysis and materials chemistry applications. The group is attempting to create larger nuclearity species that will bridge the gap between molecular compounds and nanoparticles. An outgrowth of this work is study of conversion of these clusters into important magnetic materials. Homometallic and heterometallic alkoxo-, carboxylato- and oxo-complexes of the heavy main group elements are also being actively examined. These compounds find application in sol-gel processing of oxide materials. A subarea of this field is the production of high oxidation state, alkoxide and/or oxide stabilized compounds that may find use in stoichiometric or catalytic oxidations. As with the case of the metal cluster compounds, larger discrete molecular oxide compounds are targeted for applications in nanoscience and nanotechnology applications. Some of these complexes also have biological activity.


McClain, M. J.; Schlather, A. E.; Ringe, E.; King, N. S.; Liu, L.; Manjavacas, A.; Knight, M. W.; Kumar, I.; Whitmire, K. H.; Everitt, H. O.; Nordlander, P.; Halas, N. J., “Aluminum Nanocrystals,” Nano Lett. 2015, 15, 2751-2755.

S. R. Walsh; I. Rusakova; K. H. Whitmire, Rock Salt vs. Wurtzite Phases of Co1-xMnxO: Control of Crystal Lattice and Morphology at the Nanoscale, CrystEngComm 15 (2013), 775 - 784.

R. L. Davidovich; D. V. Marinin; V. Stavila; K. H. Whitmire, Stereochemistry of fluoride and mixed-ligand fluoride complexes of zirconium and hafnium, Coord. Chem. Rev. 2013, 257, 3074-3088, 10.1016/j.ccr.2013.06.016.

Davidovich, R. L.; Marinin, D. V.; Stavila, V.; Whitmire, K. H., “Structural chemistry of fluoride and oxofluoride complexes of titanium(IV),” Coord. Chem. Rev. 2015, 299, 61-82.

Kumar, I.; Bhattacharya, P.; Whitmire, K. H., “Structural diversity in phenyl bismuth(III) bis(carboxylate) complexes,” J. Organomet. Chem. 2015, 794, 153-167.

Kumar, I.; Andrews, P.; Whitmire, K. H., “The Unexpected Isolation of Bismuth Tris(carboxylate) Hydrates: Syntheses and Structures of [Bi(Hsal)3(H2O)] and [Bi(Hanth)3(H2O)] (H2sal = 2-OH-C6H4CO2H, Hanth = 2-NH2-C6H4CO2H),” Eur. J. Inorg. Chem. 2015, 2015 (4), 605-608.

T. Ould-Ely; D. Prieto-Centurion; I. Rusakova; K. H. Whitmire, Wet chemical synthesis and characterization of polypodal In2O3 nanoparticles, CrystEngComm 2013, 15, 6918-6922, 10.1039/c3ce41264d.

Ching, S.; Prieto-Centurion, D.; Kiappes, J. L., Jr.; Whitmire, K. H. "41. Bis[bis(triphenylphosphoranylidene)-ammonium] undecacarbonyltriferrate(2-)," Inorg. Synth. 2014, 36, 223.

Bulimestru, I.; Shova, S.; Popa, N.; Roussel, P.; Capet, F.; Vannier, R.-N.; Djelal, N.; Burylo, L.; Wignacourt, J.-P.; Gulea, A.; Whitmire, K. H. "Aminopolycarboxylate Bismuth(III)-Based Heterometallic Compounds as Single-Source Molecular Precursors for Bi4V2O11 and Bi2CuO4 Mixed Oxides," Chem. Mater. 2014, 26, 6092-6103.

Kumar, I.; Bhattacharya, P.; Whitmire, K. H. "Facile One-Pot Synthesis of Triphenylbismuth(V) Bis(carboxylate) Complexes," Organometallics 2014, 33, 2906.

Boyd, T. D.; Kumar, I.; Wagner, E. E.; Whitmire, K. H. "Synthesis and structural studies of the simplest bismuth(III) oxo-salicylate complex: [Bi43-O)2(HO-2-C6H4CO2)8]·2Solv (Solv = MeCN or MeNO2)," Chem. Commun. 2014, 3556-3559.

Whitmire, K. H.; Caudell, J. B. "First Row Transition Metal Phosphides, in Encyclopedia of Inorganic and Bioinorganic Chemistry; John Wiley & Sons, Ltd: online, 2013, p 1-18.

A. C. Colson; C.-W. Chen; E. Morosan; K. H. Whitmire, Synthesis of Phase-Pure Ferromagnetic Fe3P Films from Single-Source Molecular Precursors, Adv. Func. Mater. 2012, 22, 1850-1855, 10.1002/adfm.201102386.

T. Mandal, G. Piburn, V. Stavila, I. Rusakova, T. Ould-Ely, A. C. Colson, and K. H. Whitmire New Mixed Ligand Single-Source Precursors for PbS Nanoparticles and Their Solvothermal Decomposition to Anisotropic Nano- and Microstructures.  Chem. Mater., 23 2011: 4158-4169

A. C. Colson and K. H. Whitmire Synthesis of Fe2-xMnxP Nanoparticles from Single-Source Molecular Precursors.  Chem. Mater., 23 2011: 3731-3739

K. H. Whitmire Molecular donuts and donut holes.  Science, 327 2010: 38-39

R. L. Davidovich; V. Stavila; K. H. Whitmire Stereochemistry of lead(II) complexes containing sulfur and selenium donor atom ligands.  Coord. Chem. Rev., 254 2010: 2193-2226

C. S. Levin, C. Hofmann, T. A. Ali, A. T. Kelly, E. Morosan, P. Nordlander, K. H. Whitmire, N. J. Halas Magnetic-Plasmonic Core-Shell Nanoparticles.  ACS Nano, 3 2009: 1379-1388

T. Mandal, V. Stavila, I. Rusakova, S. Ghosh, K. H. Whitmire Molecular precursors for CdS nanoparticles: synthesis and characterization of carboxylate-thiourea or -thiosemicarbazide cadmium complexes and their decomposition.  Chem. Mater., 21 2009: 5617-5626

C. Hofmann, J. H. Thurston, K. B. Hartman, L. B. Alemany, K. H. Whitmire New polyoxomolybdenum coordination compounds: Synthesis and characterization of mixed-valent Mo6O13(Hsal)2(sal)2(acac)2 and homovalent Mo4O10(acac)4 (Hsal- = 2-HO-C6H4CO2-, sal2- = 2-O-C6H4CO22-).  Inorg. Chem. Acta, 362 2009: 1665-1671

V. Stavila. J. H. Thurston, K. H. Whitmire Selective Arylation Reactions of Bismuth-Transition Metal Salicylate Complexes.  Inorg. Chem., 48 2009: 6945-6951

R. L. Davidovich, V. Stavila, D. V. Marinin, E. I. Voit, K. H. Whitmire Stereochemistry of lead(II) complexes with oxygen donor ligands.  Coord. Chem. Rev., 253 2009: 1316-1352

C. Hofmann, I. Rusakova, T. Ould-Ely, D. Prieto-Centurión, K. B. Hartman, A. T. Kelly, A. Lüttge, and K. H. Whitmire Shape control of new FexO-Fe3O4 and FeMny----Mn2O4 nanostructures.  Adv. Func. Mater., 18 2008: 1661-1667

V. Stavila, J. H. Thurston, D. Prieto-Centurion, K. H. Whitmire A new methodology for synthesis of aryl bismuth compounds: arylation of bismuth(III) carboxylates by sodium tetraarylborate salts.  Organometallics, 26 2007: 6864-6866

A. T. Kelly, I. Rusakova, T. Ould-Ely, C. Hofmann, A. Luettge, K. H. Whitmire Iron Phosphide Nanostructures Produced for a Single-Source Organometallic Precursor: Nanorods, Bundles, Crosses, and Spherulites.  Nano Lett., 7 2007: 2920-2925

I. Rusakova, T. Ould-Ely, C. Hofmann, D. Prieto-Centurion, C. S. Levin, N. J. Halas, A. Luette, K. H. Whitmire Nanoparticle Shape Conservation in the Conversion of MnO Nanocrosses into Mn3O4.  Chem. Mater., 19 2007: 1369-1375

V. Stavila, J. C. Fettinger, K. H. Whitmire Synthesis and Characterization of New Phenylbis(salicylato)bismuth(III) Complexes.  Organometallics, 26 2007: 3321-3328

V. Stavila, R. L. Davidovich, A. Gulea, K. H. Whitmire Bismuth(III) complexes with animopolycarboxylate and polyaminopolycarboxylate ligands: Chemistry and structure.  Coord. Chem. Rev., 250 2006: 2782-2810

T. Ould-Ely, D. Prieto-Centurion, A. Kumar, W Guo, W. V. Knowles, S. Asokan, M. S. Wong, I. Rusakova, A. Luettge, K. H. Whitmire Manganese(II) Oxide Nanohexapods: Insight into Controlling the Form of Nanocrystals.  Chem. Mater., 18 2006: 1821-1829

K. H. Whitmire, A. T. Kelly, C. Hofmann Mononuclear Iron Carbonyls without Hydrocarbon Ligands.  Comprehensive Organometallic Chemistry III, 6 2006: 1-76

T. Ould-Ely, J. H. Thurston and K. H. Whitmire T. Ould-Ely, J. H. Thurston and Kenton H. Whitmire, "Heterobimetallic Bismuth-Transition Metal Coordination Complexes as Single-Source Molecular Precursors for the Formation of Advanced Oxide Materials.  Comptes Rend. Chim., 8 2005: 1906-1921

T. Ould-Ely, J. H. Thurston, A. Kumar, M. Respaud, W. Guo, C. Weidenthaler and K. H. Whitmire Wet-Chemistry Synthesis of Nickel-Bismuth Bimetallic Nanoparticles and Nanowires.  Chem. Mater., 17 2005: 4750-4754

Whitmire Research Group
Whitmire Research Group Web Page

  • B.S. (1977) Roanoke College
  • M.S. (1978) Northwestern University
  • Ph.D. (1982) Northwestern University
  • Center for Biological and Environmental Nanotechnology
  • Department of Kinesiology
  • Rice Quantum Institute
  • Smalley Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology
  • Inorganic and Organometallic Chemistry. Clusters of the heavy main group elements and transition metals. Chemistry of metal alkoxides, carboxylates and their conversion to metal oxides. Chemical Education, the Chemistry of Art and Curriculum Development.
Email: whitmire@rice.edu
Phone: (713) 348-5650
Office: Dell Butcher Hall, 351