Not Accepting Doctoral Students
Kinetics, Mass Spectrometry, Environmental Chemistry
Ph.D., Cornell University (1969); M.A., Wesleyan University (1964); B.A., Lawrence University (1962); J.S. Guggenheim Fellow 1976-1977; Fellow of the American Physical Society (elected 1985); Lucia R. Briggs Distinguished Achievement Award, Lawrence University, (1993)
Please note that Professor Baer is no longer accepting graduate students into his research group.
Our research interests lie in the areas of kinetics, mass spectrometry, and environmental chemistry. The common feature among the various experiments is the creation of ions by photon-molecule interactions and the analysis of the resulting ions by time-of-flight (TOF) mass spectrometry.
The major current effort is in the field of threshold photoelectron photoion coincidence (TPEPICO) spectroscopy in which we prepare ions with selected internal energies and study their dissociation dynamics by TOF mass spectrometry. The goal of the project is the quantitative description and prediction of unimolecular rates, the modeling of complex reaction schemes (e.g. isomerization in competition with dissociation, or sequential dissociation steps), and the extraction of precise thermochemical information about ions, free radicals and stable molecules. We rely heavily on extensive ab initio MO and DFT calculations in order to learn about the energetics, structure, and reaction mechanisms of ions, free radicals, and other transient species. Among the molecules investigated are organometallic complexes, such as CpMn(CO)3, organic molecules such as ethylene glycol and acrolein, and transient species such as the vinyl and allyl radical. Some of the work is carried out at the Swiss Light Source (SLS), which is a synchrotron radiation facility. We have developed a state of the art instrument there with an imaging detector for electrons (iPEPICO) that permits the study of cold molecules with exquisite energy resolution (1 meV). Among the new projects is the study of solvation in organometallic complexes as well as solution phase bond energies.