Faculty and Staff

Bhanu Chauhan

Professor • Department of Chemistry

Bhanu P. S. Chauhan, PHD, is Professor and Chairperson of the Chemistry Department at William Paterson University of New Jersey, where he heads the Engineered Nanomaterials Laboratory. He obtained his PhD under the guidance of Professor Robert Corriu from Montpellier University II, France and received postdoctoral training in the groups of Professor Masato Tanaka (National Institute of Materials and Chemical Research in Japan) and Professor Phil Boudjouk (North Dakota State University). He has held position of Assistant Professor at Catholic University of America and City University of New York-CSI, where he also attained the rank of Associate Professor. He joined William Paterson University (WPU) in 2007, and has been Professor and Chairperson of the Chemistry Department.

Professor Chauhan serves as editorial board or advisory board member of various journals. Currently, he is very actively serving as editorial board member of five journals. The list includes, Silicon (Induction 2012), Applied Organometallic Chemistry (Induction, 2009); The Open Biomaterials Science Journal (Induction 2020); Molecules (Induction 2019) and Journal of Nanomaterials (Induction 2014). He is a guest editor of an special issue "Recent Advances in Applied Chemistry" to be published in Molecules, He has served as co-director of NYSTAR funded research center “Center for Engineered Polymeric Materials” (CePM). He is also an advisory board member of ACS-New Jersey Polymer topical group. His research area is in the field of nanomaterials synthesis and their applications in national needs such as green catalysis, hybrid materials for new optical and data storage, and nanostructure based drug delivery vehicles. He has various patents and numerous peer reviewed publications and presentations in national and international meetings.

Professional Interests

My research interests bridge traditional disciplines covering several aspects of synthetic, analytical, inorganic materials and polymer chemistry. Research in my group is inherently interdisciplinary in nature and accommodates students with interests in all areas of chemistry. The research provides a broad training in small molecule, polymer, and materials synthesis and characterization techniques and prepares students for work in either industry or academia. Three main focus areas of my research program are materials synthesis, catalysis and biomaterials analytical applications. My research interests and training embraces a wide spectrum of fundamental and industrially important problems with a special interest in the development of new catalysts to achieve products and intermediates of commercial importance. The major purpose of this research is to devise strategies to generate, stabilize, and utilize active nano-sized metals and semiconductor particles.

1. New Strategies to Nanosized Functional Materials
Nano sized metals and semiconductor particles are of particular interest due to their potential applications in catalysis, optoelectronic devices and ultrasensitive biological sensors. A key problem in the preparation of such type materials is the ability to control not only the size but also the size distribution and morphology. Most important aspect of our investigations in this area of research is to achieve versatile synthetic routes to functional nanometallic particles and to examine their utility as reactive intermediates for various applications.
Most nanosynthetic studies in our group are inspired by our hypothesis that stabilization of highly active metal nanoparticles can be achieved by the “meatball-spaghetti” analogy. In this model, preparation of functional metallic nanoparticles is viewed as the preparation of “meatball-spaghetti” dish. This analogy is based on our hypothesis that the aggregation of the meatballs (metal nanoclusters) can be prevented if enough spaghetti (flexible polymeric structures) is present to physically wrap the meatballs during the formation process. Due to very weak surface passivation imparted by stabilizing agent, such type of nanoclusters are expected to show superior activity and selectivity as reactive intermediates (or catalysts) over the nanoparticles passivated by strong coordinating ligands.

The most important and fundamental difference of this strategy from other polymer-stabilized systems is that, in this hypothesis the polymer does not contain the coordinating ligands, which can strongly passivate the nanoclusters. Moreover, the substituents of the polymer are used to induce the reduction of metal salts avoiding utilization of any external reducing agent.
The major part of this research focuses on investigations of polyhydrosiloxanes as reducing and stabilizing agents to provide a general synthetic route to numerous “polysiloxane-nanometallic composites” as “soluble” analogues of heterogeneous metallic systems. Specific aims of our research are outlined below:
The fundamental investigations of synthetic parameters to generate functional nanometallic polysiloxane conjugates and the effect of the structural compositions of oligo- and polyhydrosiloxanes to orchestrate the dispersity, size, shape, and crystallinity of the metallic conjugates.The characterization, stability studies and physicochemical property profiling of polysiloxane nanometallic conjugates.After fully developing the fundamental understanding through above-mentioned investigations, our long-term goal is to answer following questions:
How general is the polysiloxane reduction process? Do metal anions play any role in the stabilization of nanoparticles? What role do polyhydrosiloxanes (spaghetti) play in addition to their role as reducing agents to generate Mno nanoclusters (meatballs)? Are polysiloxane constitution and substitution patterns important for the long-term stability of nanoclusters? What are the temperature and solvent effects on the stability of nanoconjugates?

2. Polymer and Material Chemistry of Silicon
Our research in this area targets novel materials with specific structural, electronic, optical and/or catalytic properties. The synthetic strategy to build these materials involves low temperature, chemically directed catalytic. The design and development of the new polymer based catalysts, semiconductors and metal selective sensors are some of the prime targets of our research. Research in this area can be divided in following major categories:
(i) Synthesis and Study of New “Si” Based Functional Polymers
We are heavily involved with the synthesis, property profile study, and application of new silicon based hybrid inorganic/organic polymers. At present our efforts are focused on the new class of functional polysiloxane/polycarbosilane polymers. This new class combines the synthetic and conformational flexibility of inorganic polymers with excellent chemical stability analogous to the polyolefins. Our goal is to achieve the polymers having various types of substituents on the backbone Si-atoms in one to two step synthetic routes.
(ii) Silicon Polymers as Vehicles for Controlled and Targeted Drug Delivery
Providing control over the drug delivery can be the most important factor at times when traditional oral or injectable drug formulations cannot be used. These include situations requiring the slow release of water-soluble drugs, the fast release of low-solubility drugs, drug delivery to specific sites, drug delivery using nanoparticulate systems, delivery of two or more agents with the same formulation, and systems based on carriers that can dissolve or degrade and be readily eliminated. We are targeting synthetic strategies to design ideal drug delivery systems, which are inert, biocompatible, mechanically strong, capable of achieving high drug loading, safe from accidental release, and easy to fabricate and sterilize.

3. Catalysis and Transition metal-heteroatom Chemistry
Our interests in this area cover all aspects of selective catalysis, and especially in the design, discovery and study of systems that mediate fundamentally interesting and useful reactions. Our research in this area is driven by the need to discover catalytic systems, which combine the advantages of both homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysis. This research has led us to “soluble” analogues of heterogeneous catalysts in the form of active metal nanoclusters. The following topics in selective catalysis are of particular interest:

(i) Development of Catalytic Methods for the Formation of Carbon-Heteroatom Bonds
(ii) Nanocluster Catalyzed Asymmetric Transformations
(iii) Application of transition metal silicon compounds in Catalysis

Languages (other than English)

Hindi  French  Sanskrit 


PhD Chemistry, Montpellier University II Montpellier, France


Nanochemistry, Materials Chemistry, Organometallic and Silicon Chemistry

Representative Publications

Highly Efficient Recyclable Sol Gel Polymer Catalyzed One Pot Difunctionalization of Alkynes.; , Molecules (Basel, Switzerland); Volume 23, 2018

Novel Nanoscale Hybrid Materials; Jersey City, NJ; John Wiley & Sons, Inc.; 2018

Convenient and Template-Free Route to One-Pot Green Synthesis of Polyrhodanine Core–Shell Nanoparticles; Omega; 2018

"Polysiloxane-Pd" nanocomposites as recyclable chemoselective hydrogenation catalysts.; , Journal of the American Chemical Society; Volume 126, Issue 27 2004

Functionalized vinylsilanes via highly efficient and recyclable Pt-nanoparticle catalysed hydrosilylation of alkynes.; , Dalton transactions (Cambridge, England : 2003); Volume 46, Issue 27 2017

Representative Presentations

Carbon nanotube functionalized silica via sol-gel route
252nd ACS National Meeting | Fall 2016 | American Chemical Society
, 2016

Catalytic behavior of polymeric alkene incorporated hybrid metal catalysts
252nd ACS National Meeting | Fall 2016 | American Chemical Society
, 2016

Substrates grafting: The effect of nanostructure morphology on catalytic activity
252nd ACS National Meeting | Fall 2016 | American Chemical Society
, 2016

Awards and Honors

Leaders in Higher Education

Certificate of Appreciation
American Chemical Society Publications 2011

Fellowships, Grants and Research

Assigned Release Time

Notable Courses Taught

Analysis of Materials (Graduate)
Organic Materials Chemistry (Graduate)
Nanochem and Nanotech ( Graduate)
Instrumental Analysis (UG)
Intro to Instrumentation (UG)
Inorganic Chemistry (UG)
Transm Electrn Microscpy
Senior Research in Chemistry
Polymer Chemistry

4064 Science West

By appointment