Mohan Secures ACS Grant for Summer Student Research

June 7, 2011

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. – Several Illinois Wesleyan University students will have the chance to conduct advanced summer research through a grant secured by IWU’s Professor of Chemistry Ram Mohan.

Mohan, who holds the Earl H. and Marian A. Beling Professorship in the Natural Sciences at Illinois Wesleyan, has been awarded a grant from the American Chemical Society’s (ACS) Petroleum Research Fund for his efforts to study applications of iron(III) compounds as catalysts in organic synthesis. The fund, which supports fundamental research directly related to petroleum or fossil fuels at nonprofit institutions, rewards innovative research and advanced scientific education with the hopes of aiding in significantly increasing the world’s energy options.

The ACS grant will support two student researchers working under Mohan for the summers of 2012, 2013 and 2014.  The funds will also help with his group’s travel to national meetings.  The students will be applying iron(III) p-toluenesulfonate hexahydrate as a catalyst in five classes of organic transformations.

Mohan, who joined the Illinois Wesleyan faculty in 1996, was named the 2011 Chemist of the Year by the Illinois Heartland Section of the American Chemical Society (ACS). His research on green chemistry has been recognized internationally. He has received several research grants from The National Science Foundation, the ACS and the Research Corporation. His 2004 article in the international journal Tetrahedron, co-authored with IWU undergraduates became one of the 50 most-cited articles for this journal from 2004-2007. During his time at Illinois Wesleyan, Mohan has authored 50 articles with IWU undergraduates as co-authors. He has been invited to speak at universities and institutes worldwide.

A 1985 graduate of Hansraj College in Delhi, India, Mohan earned a master’s degree in organic chemistry from the University of Delhi in 1987 and his doctorate in chemistry from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, in 1992.  He conducted his postdoctoral research at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  

Contact: Rachel Hatch, (309) 556-3960