Dr. Kristin M. Hutchins
Title: Assistant Professor
Education: B.S. University of Iowa, 2010
Ph.D. University of Iowa, 2015
Postdoc University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2015–2017
Research Area: Organic, Materials, and Supramolecular Chemistry
Office: Chemistry 223-B
Webpage: Hutchins Group
Principal Research Interests
- Molecular Design and Recognition
- Organic and Polymer Synthesis
- Crystal Engineering
- Environmental Decontaminants
Research in the Hutchins group is inspired by the way in which nature utilizes reversible, non-covalent interactions such as hydrogen bonding and metal coordination to create large, functional structures (e.g. DNA double helix, hemoglobin). Our group focuses on designing and synthesizing new functional materials that can be used in applications ranging from water purification and environmental remediation to molecular sensors and responsive crystals.
In our work, we study supramolecular (non-covalent) interactions and aim to develop a fundamental understanding of the solid-state (crystalline) behavior of small molecules such as pharmaceutical compounds and heavy metal complexes. We utilize a variety of techniques including X-ray diffraction, NMR spectroscopy, IR spectroscopy, and imaging characterization. The solid-state behavior of these small molecules inspires the development of new polymeric materials, which incorporate specific functional groups that are complementary to and can recognize the small molecule compounds in a specific, predesigned, and reversible manner. Our research in the design and synthesis of functional materials will address problems in materials science, environmental chemistry, and fields of industry and technology.