Reginald M. Penner

picture of Reginald M. Penner

Chancellor's Professor, Chemistry
School of Physical Sciences

Ph.D., Texas A&M University, 1987
B.A. 1983, Gustavus Adolphus College

Phone: (949) 824-8572
Fax: (949) 824-8125

University of California, Irvine
2137 Natural Sciences Unit 2
Mail Code: 2025
Irvine, CA 92697
Research Interests
Analytical Chemistry; Materials Chemistry
Academic Distinctions

  • 1986 Distinguished Graduate Student Research Award, Texas A+M University.
  • 1985 Dow Fellow, Texas A+M University.
  • 1991 Procter & Gamble, University Exploratory Research Program Award.
  • 1992 National Science Foundation, NSF Young Investigator Award.
  • 1993 Office of Naval Research, ONR Young Investigator Award.
  • 1993 Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation, Beckman Young Investigator Award.
  • 1995 Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Fellow.
  • 1995 UCI School of Physical Sciences Award for Outstanding Contributions to Undergraduate Education.
  • 1995 Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar, Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation.
  • 2000 Hellmuth Fischer Medal, 8th International Fischer Symposium, Karlsruhe, Germany.
  • 2004 National Science Foundation Award for Special Creativity.
  • 2007 Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).
  • 2009 The Faraday Medal, presented by the Electrochemistry Group of the Royal Society of Chemistry of the UK.
  • 2009 Appointed Chancellor's Professor, University of California, Ivine.
  • 2016 ACS Division of Analytical Chemistry Award in Electrochemistry..
  • 2016 Charles N. Reilley Award presented by the Society for Electroanalytical Chemistry (SEAC)..
  • 2018 Appointed Distinguished Professor, University of California, Irvine..
  • 2018 Distinguished Alumni Citation in Chemistry, Gustavus Adolphus College Alumni Assoc..

complete CV in PDF format
California Institute of Technology 1988-90.
Stanford University 1987-88.
Research Abstract
We study the use of electrodeposition to fabricate nanometer-scale electrical circuits. We have found that these circuits sometimes have interesting and technologically useful properties for sensing molecules in air and in liquids. In particular, such nanocircuits can be both faster and more sensitive than conventional, larger sensors. Two projects that are currently of interest involve the detection of ammonia vapor using silver nanowires and, in a collaboration with Prof. Greg Weiss in the Department of Chemistry, the detection of prostate cancer markers using virus-polymer composite nanomaterials. Applications of this electroplating technology problems in to solar energy, battery technology, thermoelectrics, and optical detectors are also being pursued in the Penner lab.

Students in the Penner research group receive an especially broad exposure to the tools of modern materials and surface chemistry including electron microscopy and electron diffraction, x-ray diffraction, scanning probe microscopy, laser-induced luminescence spectroscopy, state-of-the-art computational methods, and of course electrochemistry.
Available Technologies
Professional Societies
American Chemical Society
Materials Research Society
Electrochemical Society
Graduate Programs
Chemical Engineering

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