Inorganic chemistry pursues molecular and materials science with the whole periodic table as its domain. Transition metal-catalyzed reactions account for an economic output that equals the GDP of most industrialized nations. Green chemistry seeks to make these processes more efficient. As we strive towards a more sustainable future, inorganic compounds are likely to play a key role in development of large scale alternative energy sources. Meanwhile, nature is a fabulous inorganic chemist: some enzymes and regulatory proteins contain metal centers that control both chemical transformations and protein architecture. Materials and nanochemistry are other burgeoning branches of inorganic chemistry that promise advances in communications, data storage, sensing, and catalysis.
The inorganic chemistry group at Yale focuses on organometallic and coordination chemistry, bioinorganic chemistry, materials chemistry and catalysis. Reaction mechanisms, new chemical transformations, and novel structures, bonding, and electronic states lie at the heart of these areas. At Yale, one might investigate the catalytic properties of a new material; the mechanism of an organometallic reaction; the interaction of organic and metal-based radicals with the core of a photosynthetic site; the nature of proton coupled electron transfer in nanoparticles; the mechanism of action of a metalloenzyme; the design of a new catalyst; organometallic methods development in organic synthesis; or a green synthesis for a pharmaceutical.
Thus the inorganic chemistry program at Yale blends a flair for the practical with an emphasis on developing fundamental principles. New catalytic processes to functionalize small molecules and synthesize pharmaceuticals are discovered in parallel with basic principles involving metal systems. As a result, your education in inorganic chemistry at Yale will open the door to apply your knowledge in both academic and industrial settings to areas as diverse as polymer science, organic synthesis, chemical biology, and electronic materials or to studies at the core of inorganic chemistry where many major discoveries and significant applications remain to be found.