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Jeffrey J. Rack
379 Clippinger Laboratories
740-593-0148 (Fax)

Group Page

Ph. D., Colorado State University

Physical Inorganic Chemistry


The Rack research group is interested in the design and characterization of inorganic molecules with specific electronic structures for applications in energy storage, solar energy conversion and electron transfer. A major thrust of our group focuses on the preparation and examination of molecular photochromic and electrochromic compounds. Typically, our strategy employs molecules exhibiting Charge-Transfer (CT) photochemistry, an isomerizable ligand, and a metal atom capable of one electron redox chemistry. Ancillary ligands further modulate the spectroscopic properties of the complex. The mode of action in these complexes is an electron-transfer triggered linkage isomerization which results in a dramatic change in both the absorption spectrum and the reduction potential of these complexes. Typical characterization techniques in the group are electrochemistry, spectroelectrochemistry, UV-vis absorption, variable-temperature emission (steady-state and time resolved) and transient absorption spectroscopy as well as other instrumentation for routine analysis (NMR, IR, X-ray crystallography). While we are ultimately interested in device applications for these compounds, we are compelled to understand the mechanism of action in these and other photoactive molecules. As a result, many of the group members embrace an iterative synthesis and measurement approach in the design of target molecules.

Selected Publications

B. A. McClure, J. J. Rack, “Ultrafast Spectroscopy of Photochromic Ruthenium Sulfoxide Complexes” Inorganic Chemistry, 2011, 50, 7586-7590.

B. L. Porter, B. A. McClure, E. R. Abrams, J. T. Engle, C. J. Ziegler, J. J. Rack, “Isomerization in an Analogous Set of Ruthenium Sulfoxide Complexes” Journal Photochemistry and Photobiology A., 2011, 217, 341-346.

V. Dieckman, K. Springfeld, S. Eicke, , M. Imlau, and J. J. Rack, “Thermal Stability, photochromic sensitivity and optical properties of [Ru(bpy)2(OSOR)]+ compounds with R = Bn, BnCl, BnMe” Optics Express, 2010, 18, 23495-23503.

D. A. Lutterman, A. A. Rachford, J. J. Rack and C. Turro, “Electronic and Steric Effects on the Photoisomerization of Dimethylsulfoxide Complexes of Ru(II) Containing Picolinate” The Journal of Physical Chemistry L, 2010, 1, 3371-3375.

C. S. Keating, B. A. McClure, J. J. Rack, I. V. Rubtsov, “Mode Coupling Pattern Changes Drastically Upon Photoisomerization in RuII complex” The Journal of Physical Chemistry C, 2010, 117, 16740-16745.

C. S. Keating, B. A. McClure, J. J. Rack, I. V. Rubtsov, “Sulfoxide Stretching Mode as a Structural Reporter via Dual-Frequency 2DIR Spectroscopy” Journal of Chemical Physics, 2010, 133, 144513

B. A. McClure, J. J. Rack, “Isomerization in Photochromic Ruthenium Sulfoxide Complexes” European Journal of Inorganic Chemistry, 2010, 3895-3904; (invited microreview)

B. A. McClure, Eric R. Abrams, J. J. Rack, “Excited State Distortion in Photochromic Ruthenium Sulfoxide Complexes” Journal of the American Chemical Society, 2010, 132, 5428-5436; featured on JACS website from April 14, 2010 to April 21, 2010.

T. A. Grusenmeyer, B. A. McClure, C. J. Ziegler, J. J. Rack, “Solvent Effects on Isomerization in a Ruthenium Sulfoxide Complex,” Inorganic Chemistry, 2010, 49

N. V. Mockus, J. L. Petersen, and J. J. Rack, "Subnanosecond Isomerization in an Osmium-Dimethylsulfoxide Complex" Inorg. Chem., 2006, 45, 8-10.

A. A. Rachford, J. L. Petersen, and J. J. Rack, "Designing Molecular Bistability in Ruthenium Dimethylsulfoxide Complexes" Inorg. Chem., 2005, 44, 8065-8075.

J. J. Rack, A. A. Rachford, and A. M. Shelker, "Turning-Off Phototriggered Linkage Isomerizations in Ruthenium Dimethylsulfoxide Complexes." Inorg. Chem., 2003, 42, 7357-7359.

J. J. Rack and N. V. Mockus, "Room-Temperature Photochromism in cis- and trans-[Ru(bpy)2(dmso)2]2+" Inorg. Chem., 2003, 42, 5792-5794.

J. J. Rack, T.M. McCleskey, E.R. Birnbaum, "Perturbing the Sequestered Water-Pool in Microemulsions: The Role of the Probe in Affecting Reverse Micelle Equilibria.". J. Phys. Chem B., 2002, 186, 632-636.

E. S. Krider, J. J. Rack, N. L. Frank and T. J. Meade, "Automated Synthesis of 3í-Metallated Oligonucleotides." Inorg. Chem., 2001, 40 , 4002-4009.

J. J. Rack , J. R. Winkler and H. B. Gray, "Phototriggered Ru(II)-dimethylsulfoxide Linkage Isomerism in Crystals and Films." J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2001, 123 , 2432-2433.

J. J. Rack, E. S. Krider, and T. J. Meade, "Electrochemistry and Spectroscopy of Ruthenium-Modified Nucleic Acids: Design of a Novel Metal-Binding Nucleoside." J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2000, 122 , 6287-6288.

J. J. Rack and H. B. Gray, "Spectroscopy and Electrochemistry of mer -Ru(Cl)3(dmso)(tmen). Dimethylsulfoxide is S-bonded to Ru(II), Ru(III), Ru(IV)." Inorg. Chem., 1999, 38 , 2-3.