Pilkington Group
Professor Melanie Pilkington (MCHEM)
Former Tier (II) Canada Research Chair
Department of Chemistry, Brock University
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At the foundation of almost everything we do in the group is structural chemistry. The amazement of seeing the molecular structures of compounds actually in front of you on the computer screen (or not as the case maybe!) is something that other characterization techniques however invaluable can never surpass. My passion for X-ray crystallography has influenced the direction of my research program and over the last 15 years I have moved from organic synthesis into the fields of solid state chemistry and inorganic coordination chemistry, where studying the molecular structures of compounds and materials is crucial to understanding their reacivity and physical properties. After all, there is a rather large table of periodic elements out there to explore! 

Fortunately, we have our own Bruker Apex II Kappa, CCD X-Ray diffractometer equipped with an Oxford Cryostream plus device for both heating and cooling single crystals. Our laboratory is equipped with a room specifically designed for crystal growth with a microscope equipped with a polarizer for examining crystals as well as a computational room for the data collection and refinement of crystal structures.

Photo's coming soon.

All members of my research group receive hands on training in how to collect, measure, solve and refine single crystal X-ray data. We are open to collaborations with other research groups both at Brock and further afield who require our expertise in X-ray crystallography. Collaborating with the Stamatatos group at Brock we are getting lots of practice in determining the molecular structures of very large clusters with unique topologies. We recently characterized a Ni26 coordination cluster that adopts a rabbit-face topology. We hope to continue to appreciate the diverse range of structural topologies that nature has to offer for many years to come.

Contact Us
Laboratory Tour
Our laboratory (right) is situated in the new Cairns Bioscience Research Complex (below) on the Brock campus just a short drive from Niagara Falls.
Interested in learning more?
Synthetic Laboratory
We have a brand new, well-equipped synthetic research laboratory. In addition we have support room which house a CD spectrometer, electrochemistry kit, UV-Vis spectrometer, rotary evaporators, MBraun glovebox and an oven for hydrothermal synthesis.
Students' writing area
All students have desks in a large state of the art office adjacent to the synthetic lab. Students can monitor their experiments through a  large glass window and door from their desks. Photo's are coming soon.
X-ray Laboratory - Crystals, crystals and more crystals !
Growing Crystals Suitable for X-ray Diffraction
For an excellent summary of the different methods employed to grow single crystals click on the following LINK