Klosterman, Jeremy
Playing with molecules in 3D

Contact Information
Assistant Teaching Professor in Chemistry and Biochemistry

Office: Urey Hall 2254
Phone: 858-246-2712
Email: jklosterman@ucsd.edu
2007 PhD., Organic Chemistry, Universität Zürich
2003 M.S., Organic Chemistry, University of California San Diego
2000 B.S., Chemistry, Northwest Nazarene University
2011-2017 Assistant Professor, Bowling Green State University
Research Interests
Visuospatial and Representational Competency

The symbolic 2D representations of molecular structure are second nature to a trained chemist. but these arcane runes present a confusing and intimidating obstacle that students must master in order to understand chemistry. Research on chemical visuospatial skills shows that students struggle to understand and use molecular representations due to poor visuospatial skills or lack of conceptual understanding. There is a clear need to better integrate representational competency (the ability to interpret and use representations) with chemical concepts. However, students do not instinctively develop visuospatial skills during general instruction; these skills must be explicitly taught.

We seek to design and develop new inquiry-based learning practices enabled by 3D printing for integration into introductory and upper-level chemistry classes. En route, we seek to show evidence of visuospatial learning due to 3D printing, identify the cognitive mechanisms, and recommend effective strategies for using 3D printing in chemical education.

Undergraduate Research

Research experience is an essential component of undergraduate education in the Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry at UC San Diego. Students in the Klosterman labs have the opportunity to contribute at the cutting edge of supramolecular and materials chemistry.

In the last fifty years, significant advances in materials science formed the foundation of modern electronics and enabled new possibilities in energy storage and environmentally friendly technologies. Crystal engineering, a recent branch of supramolecular chemistry with increasing significance, has helped shed light on the roles of intermolecular interactions in supramolecular solid-state structures. More recently, metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) combined organic and inorganic subunits to fashion robust, well-defined three-dimensional frameworks and provide easy access to the domain of solid state chemistry where specific intermolecular interactions can engender bulk, material properties.

However, much remains unknown about the relationships between the molecular structure and the resultant material properties and, as a result, the search for new, functional materials too often relies on serendipitous discovery. The primary goal of our research is the design and synthesis of functional supramolecular architectures. This necessitates a thorough understanding of the relationships between the molecular structure, the supramolecular architecture, and the material properties. We are currently focusing on the following areas:

• The development of a modular approach to control fluorophore aggregation and orientation in the solid state in order to enhance solid-state emissive properties.

• Excited-state interactions and conformational changes of push-pull organic chromophores.

• Covalent host-guest chemistry of metal-organic cages in solution.
Primary Research Area
Chemical Education
Interdisciplinary interests
Physical Organic
Macromolecular Structure

Image Gallery

Directing Chromophore Aggregation in Metal-Organic Frameworks

Multiresponsive Metal-Organic Cages in Solution

Twisted Intramolecular Charge Transfer in Aryl Benzoates

Selected Publications