University of Wisconsin - Madison MADISON United States
Getting molecular-level insights into processes at solid interfaces is a highly challenging task. In this work, we use Modulation Excitation Spectroscopy in combination with Infrared Spectroscopy to gain such insights on solid-liquid and solid-gas interfaces. We studied the cyclization of citronellal and the coupling of ethanol forming butadiene as case studies of reactions of contemporary interest to further develop the technique, the setups and test its applicability. We obtained intriguing results that helped us propose molecular-level reaction mechanisms that rationalize literature data. This work has lead to two publications in peer-reviewed journals and allowed us to further advance the technique.