Principal Investigator

Hrant P. Hratchian | ACS 223 | 209.228.2478

Hrant P. Hratchian is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of California Merced. A Michigan native, he obtained his B.S. degree in chemistry from Eastern Michigan University (Ypsilanti, MI) and completed doctoral studies under the tutelage of Professor H. Bernhard Schlegel at Wayne State University (Detroit, MI) where he was an NSF-IGERT Graduate Fellow. From 2005-2008 he was the Ernest R. Davidson Postdoctoral Fellow at Indiana University (Bloomington, IN), where he worked with Professor Krishnan Raghavachari. From 2008-2013, he was a Research Scientist at Gaussian, Inc. (Wallingford, CT). In 2013, he joined the faculty at the University of California Merced in the Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry. Professor Hratchian has served in a number of leadership roles at UC Merced, including as Interim co-Director of Cyberinfrastructure and Research Computing and as Chair of the Academic Senate's Graduate Council. In recent years, Prof. Hratchian has been honored with a Hellman Foundation Fellowship and an NSF CAREER award. He and his research group have received extramural funding support from the Petroleum Research Fund, Hellman Family Foundation, National Science Foundation, and the Department of Energy. Professor Hratchian’s research interests include the development and application of efficient computational chemistry methods to explore the unique properties of transition metals and catalyzed chemical transformations.

Graduate Students

Abdulrahman Zamani

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Abdulrahman Zamani is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of California, Merced. He obtained his B.S. in biochemistry at La Sierra University in Riverside, California. He is now researching spin projection models for investigating transition metal systems featuring coupled or localized spin centers.

Cristian Sarabia

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Cristian Sarabia is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of California, Merced, jointly studying in the Hratchian and Baxter Groups. He obtained his B.S. in Biochemistry at California State University, Fresno. His current research interests lie in computational mechanistic investigation of novel organic functional group transformations. In his free time, he enjoys doing community outreach, using his telescope, learning about Astronomy, rocks, and spending time with his fiancée Alex. Fun Fact: He has most of the Periodic Table memorized.

Andrew Bovill

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Andrew Bovill is a Ph.D. student at the University of California, Merced. He obtained both his B.S. and M.S. in Chemistry at the University of California, Santa Cruz in 2016 and 2019 respectively. Before starting at UC Merced, Andrew previously worked as an analytical chemist in industry. His current research evolves investigating and developing new excitation methods.

Madison Martin

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Madison E. Martin is a second year Ph.D. student at the University of California Merced working in the Hratchian lab. She obtained her B.S. in chemistry from the University of Central Arkansas, where she worked with Dr. Makenzie Provorse-Long. Her current research interest includes developing an efficient algorithm to optimize to a minimum energy crossing points, understanding the formation of hydrogen gas using cerium to split water. In her short time at UC Merced, she has received the CBC Summer Fellowship; where she and a collogue were tasked with creating a graduate student group for the current chemistry graduate students. Some of her hobbies outside of science include biking, listening to audio books, and traveling.

Abigail Gyamfi

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Abigail O. Gyamfi is a Ph.D. student at the University of California, Merced. She obtained her B.Sc. (Hons) in Chemistry and M.Sc. Occupational and Environmental Health and Safety degrees from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana. Currently, her research interest lies in computational investigation of three-center, two-electron chemical bond in halogen bonding interactions.

Undergraduate Students

Jonathan Loera

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Jorge Vazquez

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Emma Brass

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Group Alumni

Héctor H. Corzo (Postdoc 2019-2021), Postdoc at Oakridge National Laboratory
Ali AbouTaka
(Ph.D., 2021), Postdoc at Sandia National Laboratory (California)
Samantha Bidwell
(Ph.D., 2021), Visiting Assistant Professor at Colgate University
Hassan Harb
(Ph.D., 2021), Postdoc at Argonne National Laboratory
Lee Thompson
(Postdoc 2014-2017), Assistant Professor at the University of Louisville
Xianghai Sheng (Ph.D., 2019), Software Engineer at Google
Stephen Flaherty
Lisa Gong (graduate student at UC Davis)
Yogev Gluzman (B.S., 2019), graduate student at University of Minnesota
Bryce Fairless (B.S., 2019), graduate student at Indiana University
Anissa Abdullah (B.S., 2019)
Preston Griffon, (B.S., 2018), graduate student at George Washington University
Susana Calderon, (B.S., 2018), graduate student at Virginia Tech University
Sheyda Partovi (B.S., 2017), graduate student at Indiana University
Nicole Giddings (B.S., 2015), graduate student at University of South Florida
Euna Chung (B.S., 2015)
Ashlee Chan (B.S., 2015)
Nicole Degregorio (B.S., 2014), graduate student at Indiana University
Victor Lee (B.S., 2014), graduate student at University of Washington