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Francis DiSalvo

John A. Newman Professor, Emeritus

Francis DiSalvo

Baker Laboratory, Room 102

Educational Background

  • PhD, Stanford University
  • BS, Massachusetts Institute of Technology





Solid state chemistry, materials for fuel cells and thermoelectrics, nanoparticle synthesis, nitride compounds   



  • Chemistry and Chemical Biology

Graduate Fields

  • Applied Physics
  • Chemistry and Chemical Biology
  • Materials Science and Engineering


  • Synthesis and characterization of solid state compounds
  • Discover and understand materials with novel crystal structures and/or new or enhanced properties
  • Physical properties, such as electrical resistivity, thermal conductivity, thermopower, Hall effect and magnetic susceptibility, as well as selected chemical properties, such as electrochemical behavior, are examined and compared to properties expected on the basis of electronic structure calculations or similarity to known compounds


Spring 2022


  • Coalescence in the thermal annealing of nanoparticles: An in situ STEM study of the growth mechanisms of ordered Pt–Fe nanoparticles in a KCl matrix.Chemistry of Materials.  25:1436-1442. 2013
  • Infiltrating sulfur in a hierarchical architecture MWCNT@meso C core-shell nanocomposites for lithium-sulfur batteries. Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics.  15:9051-9057. 2013
  • Mesoporous VN prepared by solid–solid phase separation. Journal of Solid State Chemistry.  197:398-401. 2013
  • Mesoporous chromium nitride as a high performance non-carbon support for the oxygen reduction reaction. Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics.  15:7041-7044. 2013
  • Mesoporous chromium nitride as high performance catalyst support for methanol electrooxidation. Chemistry of Materials.  25:1783-1787. 2013
  • Mesoporous titanium nitride supported Pt nanoparticles as high performance catalysts for methanol electrooxidation. Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics.  15:1088-1092. 2013
  • Structurally ordered intermetallic platinum-cobalt core-shell nanoparticles with enhanced activity and stability as oxygen reduction electrocatalysts. Nature Materials.  12:81-87. 2013
  • Synthesis, raman spectrum and single-crystal structure of CaBa8[CN2]6O2(N0.5H0.5). Zeitschrift für Naturforschung.  68b:39-43. 2013
  • Synthesis, single-crystal structure and raman spectrum of Cu[N(CN)2]2 • 2 NH3. Zeitschrift für Naturforschung.  68b:296-300. 2013
  • The synthesis and structure of new transition metal lithium calcium nitride compounds. Journal of Solid State Chemistry.  197:288-296. 2013
  • Mesoporous metal nitride materials prepared from bulk oxides. Journal of the American Ceramic Society.  95:3084-3089. 2012
  • A silica sol-gel design strategy for nanostructured metallic materials. Nature Materials.  11:460-467. 2012
  • A surfactant-free strategy for synthesizing and processing intermetallic platinum-based nano particle catalysts. Journal of the American Chemical Society.  134:18453-18459. 2012
  • Facile synthesis of carbon-supported Pd–Co core–shell nanoparticles as oxygen reduction electrocatalysts and their enhanced activity and stability with monolayer Pt decoration. Chemistry of Materials.  24:2274-2281. 2012
  • Generalized routes to mesostructured silicates with high metal content. Zeitschrift für Physikalische Chemie.  226:1219-1227. 2012
  • Interconversion of inverse opals of electrically conducting doped titanium oxides and nitrides. Small.  8:2824-2832. 2012
  • Mesoporous vanadium nitride as a high performance catalyst support for formic acid electrooxidation. Chemical Communications.  48:10502-10504. 2012
  • Na5[CN2]2[CN], (Li, Na)5[CN2]2[CN], and K2[CN2]: Carbodiimides from high-pressure synthesis. Zeitschrift für anorganische und allgemeine Chemie.  638:2111-2116. 2012
  • Template-free synthesis of mesoporous transition metal nitride materials from ternary cadmium transition metal oxides. Chemistry of Materials.  24:4406-4409. 2012
  • Tuning oxygen reduction reaction activity via controllable dealloying: A model study of ordered Cu3Pt/C inter metallic nanocatalysts. Nano Letters.  12:5230-5238. 2012
  • A structural comparison between a new quaternary nitride, Ba3GeMgN4, and its isostructural Sr analogue. Bulletin of the Korean Chemical Society 32:353-355. 2011
  • Alkaline earth metal-hydride-iodide compounds: Syntheses and crystal structures of Sr2H3I and Ba5H2I3.9(2)O2. Zeitschrift für Naturforschung 66b:21-26. 2011
  • Ce2SeN2: Ternary selenide nitride containing tetravalent Ce in the Ce2SO2 structure type. Solid State Sciences 13:19-22. 2011
  • Direct Access to Mesoporous Crystalline TiO2/Carbon Composites with Large and Uniform Pores for Use as Anode Materials in Lithium Ion Batteries. Macromolecular Chemistry and Physics 212. 2011
  • Facile synthesis of PtNi intermetallic nanoparticles: Influence of reducing agent and precursors on electrocatalytic activity. Chemistry of Materials 23:1136-1146. 2011
  • Filling up another gap: Synthesis and crystal structure of Ba2H3I. Zeitschrift für Naturforschung 66b:1087-1091. 2011
  • Gallium nitride powders: Mechanism of ammonothermal synthesis, ball-mill assisted rare earth doping and uniform electropheroretic deposition. Journal of Crystal Growth 316:90-96. 2011
  • High power factor of HPHT-sintered GeTe-AgSbTe2 alloys. Journal of Electronic Materials 40:17-24. 2011
  • Orthoborate halides with the formula (M+II)5(BO3)3 X: Syntheses, crystal structures and raman spectra of Eu5(BO3)3 Cl and Ba5 (BO3)3 X (X =Cl,Br). Zeitschrift für Naturforschung 66b:359-365. 2011
  • Silver delafossite nitride, AgTaN2? Journal of Solid State Chemistry 184:7-11. 2011
  • Syntheses and crystal structures of the solid solution Sr4OBr2.89(2)Cl3.11(2) and the elusive Ba2OBr2. Zeitschrift für Naturforschung 66b:1000-1004. 2011
  • Syntheses, single-crystal structure and vibrational spectra of Ca15(CBN)6(C2)2H2. Zeitschrift für Naturforschung 66b:1092-1096. 2011
  • Thermoelectric properties of HPHT sintered In-doped Pb0.5Sn0.5Te. Journal of Solid State Chemistry 183:1817-1822. 2010
  • Synthesis, crystal structure, and properties of the rhombohedral modification of the thiospinel CuZr1.86(1)S4. Journal of Solid State Chemistry 183:606-612. 2010
  • Non-stoichiometric FexWN2: Leaching of Fe from layer-structured FeWN2. Journal of Solid State Chemistry 183:327-331. 2010
  • Fabrication and surface characterization of single crystal PtBi and PtPb (100) and (001) surfaces. Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 12:12978-12986. 2010
  • Catalyst supports for polymer electrolyte fuel cells. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A 368:3242-3253. 2010
  • Cosputtered composition-spread reproducibility established by high-throughput x-ray fluorescence. Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology A 28:1279-1280. 2010
  • Highly stable and CO-tolerant Pt/Ti0.7W0.3O2 electrocatalyst for proton-exchange membrane fuel cells. Journal of the American Chemical Society 132:10218-10220. 2010
  • Improved fuel cell oxidation catalysis in Pt1−xTax. Chemistry of Materials 22:1080-1087. 2010
  • Intermetallics as novel supports for Pt monolayer O2 reduction electrocatalysts: Potential for significantly improving properties. Journal of the American Chemical Society  132:906-907. 2010
  • Kinetic stabilization of ordered intermetallic phases as fuel cell anode materials. Journal of Physical Chemistry C 114:14929-14938. 2010
  • Na5GaGe2: A new intermetallic compound with an isolated linear anion of GaGe25-. Bulletin of the Korean Chemical Society 31:1797-1799. 2010
  • New calcium hydride halides with familiar structures. Syntheses and crystal structures of Ca7H12Cl2 and Ca2H3Br. Zeitschrift für Naturforschung 65b:493-498. 2010
  • One more compound containing the CBN4- ion-synthesis, single-crystal structure and vibrational spectra of Ca15(CBN)6(C2)2F2. Zeitschrift für Naturforschung 65b:1409-1415. 2010
  • Phase behavior of pseudobinary precious metal−carbide systems. Journal of Physical Chemistry C 114:21664-21671. 2010
  • Pt alloy and intermetallic phases with V, Cr, Mn, Ni, and Cu: Synthesis as nanomaterials and possible applications as fuel cell catalysts. Chemistry of Materials 22:2190-2202. 2010
  • Pt−Cd and Pt−Hg phases as high activity catalysts for methanol and formic acid oxidation. Journal of Physical Chemistry C 114:12545-12553. 2010
  • Single-crystal x-ray diffraction study of Na[OCN] at 170 K and its vibrational spectra. Zeitschrift für Naturforschung 65b:528-532. 2010
  • Sol−gel synthesis, electrochemical characterization, and stability testing of Ti0.7W0.3O2 nanoparticles for catalyst support applications in proton-exchange membrane fuel cells. Journal of the American Chemical Society 132:17531-17536. 2010
  • Synthesis of Pt-Mo-N thin film and catalytic activity for fuel cells. Chemistry of Materials 22:3451-3456. 2010
  • X-ray fluorescence investigation of ordered intermetallic phases as electrocatalysts towards the oxidation of small organic molecules. Chemistry - A European Journal 16:13689-13697. 2010
  • CO tolerance of ordered intermetallic phases. Journal of Electroanalytical Chemistry 626:14-22. 2009
  • LiSrGe2 and LiBaGe2: One-dimensional chains of 1∞ [Ge2]3- in an unusual conformation. Journal of Alloys and Compounds 470:90-95. 2009
  • Methanol electrooxidation on PtRu bulk alloys and carbon-supported PtRu nanoparticle catalysts: A quantitative DEMS study. Langmuir 25:7725-7735. 2009
  • PtPb nanoparticle electrocatalysts: Control of activity through synthetic methods. Journal of Nanoparticle Research 11:965-980. 2009
  • Synthesis and crystal structure of the new quaternary subnitride, Sr2GeGaN. Bulletin of the Korean Chemical Society 30:1379-1382. 2009
  • Synthesis of intermetallic PtZn nanoparticles by reaction of Pt nanoparticles with Zn vapor and their application as fuel cell catalysts. Chemistry of Materials 21:2661-2667. 2009
  • Synthesis, crystal and electronic structures of La3Cr2N6. Solid State Communications 149:273-276. 2009
  • Transport properties of undoped and Br-doped PbTe sintered at high-temperature and pressure ≥4.0 GPa. Journal of Solid State Chemistry 182:2602-2607. 2009
  • Tungsten-doped titanium dioxide in the rutile structure: Theoretical considerations. Chemistry of Materials 21:1627-1635. 2009
  • A new ternary nitride La2GaN3: Synthesis and crystal structure. Journal of Alloys and Compounds 457:372-375. 2008
  • Alkaline earth metal oxyhalides revisited – syntheses and crystal structures of Sr4OBr6, Ba4OBr6 and Ba2OI2. Zeitschrift für Naturforschung 63b:519-524. 2008
  • Ba9Ge3N10: A new ternary nitride containing isolated planar triangular anions of [GeN3]5-. Bulletin of the Korean Chemical Society 29:2413-2418. 2008
  • Calcium carbodiimide compounds revisited – syntheses, single crystal structure determination and vibrational spectra of Ca11N6[CN2]2, Ca4N2[CN2] and Ca[CN2]. Zeitschrift für Naturforschung 63b:530-536. 2008
  • Effects of high-pressure high-temperature treatment on the thermoelectric properties of PbTe. Journal of Alloys and Compounds 460:8-12. 2008
  • Electrocatalytic activity of ordered intermetallic PtPb nanoparticles prepared by borohydride reduction toward formic acid oxidation. Journal of the Electrochemical Society 155:B148-B148. 2008
  • Electrocatalytic mechanism and kinetics of SOMs oxidation on ordered PtPb and PtBi intermetallic compounds: DEMS and FTIRS study. Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 10:3739-3751. 2008
  • Electrocatalytic performance of fuel oxidation by Pt3Ti nanoparticles. Journal of the American Chemical Society 130:5452-5458. 2008
  • High intensity red emission from Eu doped GaN powders. Physica Status Solidi C 5:1495-1498. 2008
  • Microemulsions as templates for the synthesis of metallic nanoparticles. Colloids and Surfaces A: Physiochemical and Engineering Aspects 317:328-338. 2008
  • Ordered mesoporous materials from metal nanoparticle-block copolymer self-assembly. Science 320:1748-1752. 2008
  • Sr(Mg3Ge)N4 and Sr(Mg2Ga2)N4: New isostructural Mg-containing quaternary nitrides with nitridometallate anions of 3 ∞ [(Mg3Ge)N4]2− and 3 ∞ [(Mg2Ga2)N4]2− in a 3D-network structure. Solid State Sciences 10:1846-1852. 2008
  • Surface characterization of ordered intermetallic PtBi(0 0 1) surfaces by ultra-high vacuum–electrochemistry (UHV–EC). Surface Science 602:1830-1836. 2008
  • Syntheses and crystal structures of Sr7H12X2 (X = Cl, Br). Zeitschrift für Naturforschung 63b:513-518. 2008
  • The last missing member of the AE2[BN2]Cl series – synthesis, structural and spectroscopic characterization of Ba2[BN2]Cl. Zeitschrift für Naturforschung 63b:525-529. 2008
  • Two novel Zintl compounds Na12Ge8Sn and Na15Ge8SnP: Single crystal and electronic structures. Solid State Sciences 10:525-532. 2008
  • A Metal Nitride Carbodiimide with a Stuffed Skutterudite-type Structure: Synthesis, Crystal Structure and IR Spectra of (Ba6N5/6)2[NbN4][CN2]6. Zeitschrift für Naturforschung 62b:1246-1250. 2007
  • Electronic effects in CO chemisorption on Pt−Pb intermetallic surfaces:  A theoretical study. Journal of Physical Chemistry C 111:17357-17369. 2007
  • Na2ZnGe. Acta Crystallographica Section E 63:i62-i63. 2007
  • Ni3Cr2P2Q9 (Q = S, Se): New quaternary transition metal chalcogenides with a unique layered structure. Chemistry of Materials 19:4600-4605. 2007
  • Reinvestigation of trilithium phosphide, Li3P. Acta Crystallographica Section E 63:i97-i98. 2007
  • Resputtering phenomena and determination of composition in codeposited films. Physical Review B 76:195437/1-195437/10. 2007
  • Syntheses and Crystal Structures of the New Ternary Barium Halide Hydrides Ba2H3X (X = Cl or Br). Zeitschrift für Naturforschung 62b:23-27. 2007
  • Synthesis and single crystal structures of ternary phosphides Li4SrP2 and AAeP (A=Li, Na; Ae=Sr, Ba). Journal of Solid State Chemistry 180:432-439. 2007
  • Synthesis and thermoelectric properties of (CuyMo6Se8)1−x(Mo4Ru2Se8)x alloys. Journal of Alloys and Compounds 431:262-268. 2007
  • Synthesis, Crystal Structure and Optical Spectra of Yb2[CN2]3. Zeitschrift für Naturforschung 62b:658-662. 2007
  • The synthesis and structural characterization of the new ternary nitrides: Ca4TiN4 and Ca5NbN5. Journal of Solid State Chemistry 180:31-40. 2007
  • Two Polymorphs of Ba3Sn2P4: Single Crystal and Electronic Structures. Journal of Alloys and Compounds 430:54-59. 2007
  • [W6S8] Octahedral Tungsten Clusters Functionalized with Thiophene Derivatives:  toward Polymerizable Building Blocks. Inorganic Chemistry 46:8976-8987. 2007
  • Crystal Structure of Distrontium Oxide Diiode, Sr2OI2. Zeitschrift für Kristallographie- New Crystal Structures 221:271-272. 2006
  • Crystal Structure, Electronic Structure, and Thermoelectric Properties of AuTlSb: A New Pyrite Superstructure. Journal of Alloys and Compounds 425:81-87. 2006
  • Cu4Mo6Se8:  Synthesis, Crystal Structure, and Electronic Structure of a New Chevrel Phase Structure Type. Inorganic Chemistry 45:2718-2726. 2006
  • Distributions of conduction electrons as manifested in MAS NMR of gallium nitride. Journal of the American Chemical Society 128:4952-4953. 2006
  • Intermetallic PtPb Nanoparticles Prepared by Sodium Naphthalide Reduction of Metal-Organic Precursors: Electrocatalytic Oxidation of Formic Acid. Chemistry of Materials 18:5591-5596. 2006
  • Luminescence Properties of Red-emitting M2Si5N8:Eu2+ (M = Ca, Sr, Ba) LED Conversion Phosphors.  Journal of Alloys and Compounds 417:273-279. 2006
  • Photoluminescence and cathodoluminescence analyses of GaN powder doped with Eu. Applied Physics Letters 88. 2006
  • Radiolytic Purification of CaO by Electron Beams. Philosophical Magazine 86:2907-2917. 2006
  • Single Crystal Structure and Raman Spectrum of Ba3Na2(CN2)4. Journal of Solid State Chemistry 179:1363-1368. 2006
  • Surface Composition of Ordered Intermetallic Compounds PtBi and PtPb. Surface Science 600:2670-2680. 2006
  • Synthesis and Crystal Structure of LiCaGaN2. Journal of Alloys and Compounds 417:50-54. 2006
  • Synthesis, Characterization, and Electrocatalytic Activity of PtPb Nanoparticles Prepared by Two Synthetic Approaches. Langmuir 22:10465-10471. 2006
  • Thermoelectric and Structural Properties of a New Chevrel Phase: Ti0.3Mo5RuSe8. Journal of Solid State Chemistry 179-2158-2163. 2006
  • W6S8 Inorganic Clusters with Organic TTF Derivative Ligands: In Pursuit of Multidimensional Conductive Networks. Chemistry of Materials 18:4296-4306. 2006
  • Adsorption of CO on PtBi2 and PtBi Surfaces. Surface Science 574:1-16. 2005
  • Crystal Structure of Dibarium Mononitride, Ba2N, an Alkaline Earth Metal Subnitride. Zeitschrift für Kristallographie - New Crystal Structures 220:519-520. 2005
  • Exploring Thallium Compounds as Thermoelectric Materials: Seventeen New Thallium Chalcogenides. Chemistry of Materials 17:2875-2884. 2005
  • Green emission from Er-doped GaN powder. Applied Physics Letters 86. 2005
  • Monotopic Binding Modes for Ditopic Ligands: Synthesis and Characterization of W6S8L6 (L = bis)diphenylphosphino)ethane, 4,4'-bipyridine) Cluster Compounds. Comptes Rendus Chimie 8:1779-1788. 2005
  • Rapid Synthesis of High Purity GaN Powder. Physica Status Solidi C 2:2074-2078. 2005
  • Reinvestigation of MnSn2. Acta Crystallographica Section E 61:i282-284. 2005
  • Reinvestigation of Na3P Based on Single-Crystal Data. Acta Crystallographica Section E 61:i223-i224. 2005
  • Synthesis and Characterization of Hydrogen-Bonded Assemblies of W6S8L6 Clusters. Inorganic Chemistry 44:2287-2296. 2005
  • Synthesis and Characterization of K(In6.5Ag6.5). Journal of Solid State Chemistry 178:3494-3499. 2005
  • Synthesis and Structure of Sr6Ge5N2 and Ba6Ge5N2. Bulletin of the Korean Chemical Society 26:1543-1548. 2005
  • Synthesis and Structure of a Second Polymorph of Strontium Germanium Nitride: β-Sr2GeN2. Bulletin of the Korean Chemical Society 26:786-790. 2005
  • Synthesis, Characterization and Electrocatalytic Activity of PtBi Nanoparticles Prepared by the Polyol Process. Chemistry of Materials 17:5871-5876. 2005
  • The Indium Sub-Nitrides, Ae6In4(InxLiy)N3-z (Ae = Sr and Ba). Inorganic Chemistry 44:6680-6690. 2005
  • Time Dependence of the Growth Morphology of GaN Single Crystals Prepared in a Na–Ga Melt. Japanese Journal of Applied Physics 44:3157-3160. 2005
  • Tl2AXTe4 (A = Cd, Hg, Mn; X = Ge, Sn): Crystal Structure, Electronic Structure, and Thermoelectric Properties. Chemistry of Materials 17:6186-6194. 2005
  • Electrocatalytic Activity of Ordered Intermetallic Phases for Fuel Cell Applications. Journal of the American Chemical Society 126:4043-4049. 2004
  • Electronic Transport and Magnetic Properties of a New Nickel Antimonide Telluride, Ni2SbTe2. Journal of Alloys and Compounds 366:136-144. 2004
  • Reactions of Alkaline Earth Metals and Nitrogen in Sealed Niobium Ampoules: The Formation of MgZn2 Type Intermetallic Phases in the Presence of Nitrogen and the New Compound Ba5[NbN4]N. Journal of Alloys and Compounds 384:98-105. 2004
  •  Single Crystal Growth of GaN by the Temperature Gradient Na Flux Method. Journal of Crystal Growth 266:461-466. 2004
  • Sr10[Mo2N6][MoN4]2 and β-Sr3MoN4. Zeitschrift für anorganische und allgemeine Chemie 630:2177-2185. 2004
  • Surface Treatment Effects on the Electrocatalytic Activity and Characterization of Intermetallic Phases. Journal of the Electrochemical Society 151:A971-A977. 2004
  • Thermoelectric Properties and Antiferromagnetism of the New Ternary Transition Metal Telluride CrAuTe4. Journal of Solid State Chemistry 177:2998-3006. 2004