Jason Bates

Graduate Research Assistant

Advised by Professor Rajamani Gounder

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University of Kansas, B.S. Chemical Engineering (2010 - 2014)
Swansea University, Study abroad direct exchange (2012)
Purdue University, Ph.D. Chemical Engineering (2014 - present)



  • Graduate Research Fellowship Honorable Mention - NSF (2015)
  • Ross Fellowship - Purdue University (2014)
  • Graduate Research Fellowship Honorable Mention - NSF (2014)
  • Senior Outstanding Academic Achievement - KU Chemical Engineering Dept. (2014)
  • Undergraduate Research Award - KU Center for Undergraduate Research (2013)
  • Two-Semester Outstanding Achievement in Physical Chemistry - KU Chem Dept. (2013)
  • Top Honors General Chemistry Student - KU Chem Dept. (2011)
  • National Merit Finalist (2010)
  • Project Description

    Solid Lewis acids catalyze reactions relevant to future energy and chemical solutions (e.g. biomass conversion), but are less well-understood than Brønsted acids in terms of the influence of active site properties on the catalytic chemistry. The objective of my project is to develop a fundamental understanding of how the nature and identity of the Lewis acid site influences catalytic chemistry and kinetics. I will approach this problem using well-defined single-site Lewis acid zeolites (framework M4+ atoms) and detailed kinetic and mechanistic analyses of a probe reaction to develop structure-function relations. Collaboration with theoreticians (i.e. the Greeley group) will be essential for identifying relevant descriptors of Lewis acid reactivity.


  • Bukowski, B. C., Bates, J. S.*, Gounder, R., Greeley, J., A Periodic DFT Study of the Influence of Lewis Acid Site Speciation on Ethanol Dehydration in Zeolites. Catalysis Club of Chicago Spring Symposium, Naperville, IL, May 17, 2016. (Poster)
  • Bates J., Starace A., Habas S., Ruddy D., Griffin M., Schaidle J., Characterizing the Active Sites of Ligand-Capped Transition Metal Phosphide Nanoparticle Catalysts: Ligand Removal and Surface Acidity. 24th North American Catalysis Society North American Meeting, Wednesday Poster Session, P-W-B-192, Pittsburgh, PA, June 17, 2015.
  • Bates J., Pan Q., Ramanathan A., Subramaniam B., Zr-Incorporated Mesoporous Silicates, Zr-KIT-6, As Lewis Acid Catalysts. Microporous and Mesoporous Materials II. AIChE Annual Meeting Oral Presentation, San Francisco, CA, November 4, 2013.
  • Bates J., Ide M., Davis R.J., Oxidation of 1,6-hexanediol over Carbon-Supported Pt-Au Nanoparticles. Center for Biorenewable Chemicals Poster Session, Ames, Iowa, August 3, 2012