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Andrew Gellman

Carnegie Mellon University
Chemical Engineering
Ph.D., Chemistry, University of California, Berkeley, 1985

Andrew Gellman received his B.S. in Chemistry from the California Institute of Technology and his Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley. Thereafter, he was an ICI postdoctoral fellow at Cambridge University in Physical Chemistry. He became a faculty member of the chemistry department at the University of Illinois before joining Carnegie Mellon in 1992 where he was appointed the Lord Professor of Chemical Engineering in 1999. Andrew Gellman served as Department Head of Chemical Engineering. He promulgated a $28 million renovation of Doherty Hall. In 2012 he was appointed co-Director of Carnegie Mellon’s W.E. Scott Institute for Energy Innovation.


Professor Gellman's group uses experimental methods to study processes occurring on surfaces such as the bonding of molecules to metal surfaces, surface structure, reaction kinetics, catalysis, friction, and lubrication.  The use of surface science methods to create and study well-defined surfaces allows Professor Gellman's group to investigate surface chemistry relevant to these processes at the most fundamental level.
Professor Gellman’s group has pioneered the study of enantioselective surface chemistry on naturally chiral metal surfaces.  These surfaces are high Miller index planes that lack mirror symmetry and therefore exist as two enantiomorphs.  Recent work using D- and L-tartaric acid adsorbed on several Cu(hkl)R&S surfaces has demonstrated that one can achieve enormously high enantiospecific reaction rates via autocatalytic surface explosion mechanisms. Other work has used 13C isotopically labeled L-aspartic acid to monitor directly the enantioselective separation of DL-aspartic acid on Cu(3,1,17)R&S surfaces.  This work generates insight into some of the fundamental phenomena that lead to enantioselective adsorption and catalysis on chiral surfaces.
Recent work in Professor Gellman’s laboratory has focused effort on the development of instrumentation and methods for high throughput study of surface phenomena.  Study of the surface science of multicomponent materials such as alloys is complicated by the fact that one needs to prepare, characterize and study many samples of varying composition.  Gellman’s group has worked to overcome this bottleneck by developing tools for the preparation of Composition Spread Alloy Films.  These are alloy films that have composition gradients parallel to their surfaces such that a 1x1 cm2 sample contains all possible compositions of a ternary alloy, AxByC1-x-y with x = 0 -> 1, y = 0 -> 1-x.  Spatially resolved materials and surface characterization methods (SEM, EDX, EBSD, XPS, UPS, LEIS, etc.) can then be used to map and study composition dependent phenomena such as surface segregation, catalysis, dewetting, and oxidation across the entire alloy composition space.
Another body of recent work exploits the use of spherically curved single crystal surfaces to conduct high throughput studies of structure sensitive surface chemistry that span surface orientations continuously.  This circumvents the need for study of many single crystals exposing surfaces of a single crystallographic orientation.  Surface Structure Spread Single Crystals expose a distribution of different surface orientations spanning a continuous region of the stereographic projection of all possible surface orientations.  Spatially resolved surface analysis methods such as STM, XPS and UPS can be used to study problems in surface structure, surface physics and structure sensitive surface chemistry


Title Position Email
Robert Burnley Graduate Student
Soham Dutta Postdoctoral Fellow
Carlos Fernandez-Caban Graduate Student
Nicholas Golio Graduate Student
Zhitao Guo Graduate Student
Burcu Karagöz Postdoctoral Fellow
Michael Radetic Graduate Student
Irem Sen Postdoctoral Fellow
Xiaoxiao Yu Graduate Student
Most Cited Publications

"The Adsorption of Chiral Alcohols on "Chiral" Metal Surfaces," C.F. McFadden, P.S. Cremer, A.J. Gellman,  Langmuir, 12(10), 2483 (1996) 
“Enantioselective Separation on a Naturally Chiral Surface,”J. Horvath, P. Kamakoti, A. Koritnik, D.S. Sholl, A.J. Gellman , J. Amer. Chem. Soc. 126(45), 14988 (2004)
"The oscillatory behavior of the CO oxidatio reaction at atmospheric pressure over platinum single crystals: Surface analysis and pressure dependent mechanisms," Yeates, R.C., Turner, J.E., Gellman, A.J., Somorjai, G.A., Surface Science 149, no. 1 (1985)
“Kinetics and Energetics of Oligomer Desorption from Surfaces,” K.R. Paserba, A.J. Gellman, Phys. Rev. Lett.86(19), 4338 (2001) 
"Enantiospecific desorption of chiral compounds from chiral Cu (643) and achiral Cu (111) surfaces," Horvath, Joshua D., Andrew J. Gellman, J. Amer. Chem. Soc.124, 10 (2002)

Recent Publications

"Initiation of Vacancy-Mediated, Surface Explosion Reactions: Trataric and Aspartic Acid on Cu Surfaces,"  P Kondratyuk, B Karagoz, Y Yun, and AJ Gellman.  Journal of Physical Chemistry C (2019)
"High Performance FlexibleTemperature Sensores via Nanoparticle Printing,"  T Rahman, CY Cheng, B Karagoz, M Renn, MC Scrandt, AJ Gellman, and R Panat.  ACS Applied Nano Materials 2.5 (2019)
"Impact of metal adhesion layer diffusion on thermal interface conductance,"  D Saha, X Yu, M Jeong, M Darwish, J Weldon, AJ Gellman, and JA Malen.  Phys Rev B 99.115 (2019)
Kinetics and Mechanism of Aspartic Acid Adsorption and Its Explosive Decomposition on Cu(100) Langmuir 35(8), pp. 2925-2933 (2019)
"Suppression of B2 phase in Pdz Cu1-z alloy thin films." Yu, X., Gellman, A.J. Thin Solid Films 668, pp. 50-55 (2018).