Environmental Sciences Seminar:
Modelling Dynamics in Solids: From Origin of Life to Modern Challenges

Date

Feb 28 2020

Time

1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Location

Environmental and Natural Resource Sciences Bldg -- Room 223
14 College Farm Rd. New Brunswick, NJ 08901

Abstract:

  • What interactions are key for retaining carbon in soils?
  • Why some solvents are better at creating “high-surface” materials?
  • How pollutants can be captured and retained by layered minerals?
  • What is the role of minerals in the Origin of Life?

These seemingly unrelated questions share a common feature – they rely on specific physicochemical interactions between small molecules and soil-forming minerals.

Molecular modelling is a powerful tool allowing us to rationalise existing data and produce testable hypotheses. Within this talk, on examples from my work [1-6], I will demonstrate how computational techniques allow us to obtain atomistic information on large-scale processes occurring on our planet and beyond. I intend this talk to be an introduction to molecular modelling of minerals, and to promote fruitful interdisciplinary conversations.

Electron scanning microscope image (left) of a sandstone core, atomic force microscope image (centre), and atomistic molecular model of a montmorillonite clay interaction with organic molecule via Ca2+ cation bridging (right)

Date

Feb 28 2020

Time

1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Organizer

Dept of Environmental Sciences
Website
http://envsci.rutgers.edu/index.php

Location

Environmental and Natural Resource Sciences Bldg -- Room 223
14 College Farm Rd. New Brunswick, NJ 08901
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