Loyola University Chicago

Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry


Killelea, Daniel

Title/s: Assistant Professor

Office #: FH-103

Phone: 773.508.3136

E-mail: dkillelea@luc.edu

External Webpage: http://www.killelea-lab-loyola.com/


  • Postdoctoral Scholar, The University of Chicago, 2007-2011
  • Ph.D. Chemistry, Tufts University, 2007
  • B.S. Chemistry, University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee, 2000

Research Interests

The Killelea group is studying the structures of metal surfaces relevant to heterogeneous catalysis to provide insight to their fundamental chemistry.  Our primary technique is ultra-high vacuum scanning tunneling microscopy (UHV-STM).  Of particular interest is the formation of subsurface species on transition metals.  We have recently shown that rhodium surfaces efficiently absorb gas-phase O atoms into the selvedge of the metal, yet the surface structure reflects surface coverages well below the total amount of O present.  This suggests that O absorption does not require high O-coverages surface features and other mechanisms are important.  We are also studying the surface structure of Ag(111) at high O coverages and for various energies of the incident O atoms.  A separate research direction is investigations of the structures water molecules adopt on platinum surfaces.  On flat Pt surfaces, water is ordered in a network of 5,6, and 7 membered rings.  Using DFT, our collaborators at Leiden University in The Netherlands have predicted that different structures will form on stepped Pt surfaces.  We are imaging miscuts of the Pt(111) surface with submonolayer water coverages to verify the DFT results.


  • Van Marum Colloquia Invited Speaker, Leiden Institute of Chemistry, Leiden, The Netherlands, July 2011
  • AVS Graduate Research Award, 2007
  • 8th Frühjahrssymposium in Konstanz, Germany, 2006: Travel and presentation award
  • Charles B. Gates Award, UW–M Chemistry Department, 2000

Selected Publications

1. Derouin, J.; Farber, R. G.; Killelea, D. R., Combined STM and TPD Study of Rh(111) Under Conditions of High Oxygen Coverage. Journal of Physical Chemistry C 2015, 119(26), 14748-14755.

2. Valencia, V. A.; Thaker, A. A.; Derouin, J.; Valencia, D. N.; Farber, R. G.; Gebel, D. A.; Killelea, D. R., Preparation of scanning tunneling microscopy tips using pulsed alternating current etching. Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology A 2015, 33 (2).

2. Gibson, K. D.; Langlois, G. G.; Li, W. X.; Killelea, D. R.; Sibener, S. J., Molecular interactions with ice: Molecular embedding, adsorption, detection, and release. Journal of Chemical Physics 2014, 141 (18).

4. Killelea, D.R.; Utz, A.L. “On the Origin of Mode- and Bond-selectivity in Vibrationally Mediated Reactions on Surfaces”, Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 2013, 15, 20545-20554

5. K.D. Gibson, D.R. Killelea, and S.J. Sibener; “Comparison of the Surface and Subsurface Oxygen Reactivity and Dynamics with CO Adsorbed on Rh(111)The Journal of Physical Chemistry C 2014, 118, 14977-14982

6. H.Q. Yuan, K.D. Gibson, D.R. Killelea, and S.J. Sibener; “Alignment of Benzene Thin Films on Self-Assembled Monolayers by Surface Templating”, Surface Science 2013, 609, 177-182

7. Gibson, K.D.; Killelea, D.R.; Becker, J.S.; Yuan, H.Q.; Sibener, S.J. “Energetic Ballistic Deposition of Volatile Gases into Ice”, Chemical Physics Letters 2012, 531, 18-21 (Editor’s Choice)

8. Killelea, D.R.; Gibson, K.D.; Yuan, H.Q.; Becker, J.S.; Sibener, S.J. “Dynamics of Sputtering of Water from Ice Films by Collisions with Energetic Xenon Atoms”, The Journal of Chemical Physics 2012, 136, 144705