Carnegie Mellon University
October 14, 2013

News Brief: James T. Hynes To Present the Third Biennial John A. Pople Lecture in Theoretical and Computational Chemistry

Contact: Jocelyn Duffy / 412-268-9982 /

PITTSBURGH—Theoretical chemist James T. "Casey" Hynes will deliver Carnegie Mellon University's Third Biennial John A. Pople Lecture in Theoretical and Computational Chemistry at 4:30 p.m., Tuesday Oct. 15 in the Mellon Institute Auditorium, 4400 Fifth Ave., Oakland.

His lecture, "Jumps and Hydrogen Bonds: From Pure Water to DNA" is free and open to the public. It will be followed by a reception in the Mellon Institute lobby.

Hynes's research focuses on the theory of chemical reactions and allied phenomena — such as solvation dynamics and vibrational energy transfer — in solution, at interfaces and for biomolecular systems. He is best known for the Grote-Hynes theory for chemical reaction rates and the jump model for water and aqueous solutions. He has also contributed to theory for neutrophilic substitutions, proton and electron transfer reactions, interfacial reactions important for studying the ozone hole and the origin of life in the interstellar medium, dynamical effects in enzyme catalysis, photochemical isomerization, catalyzed water oxidation and carbon dioxide reduction, and intercalation of anti-cancer drugs into DNA.

Hynes is a Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Colorado, Boulder and CNRS Director of Research Emeritus at the École Normale Supérieure in Paris. He received his bachelor's degree from Catholic University and his doctorate from Princeton University. After completing an NIH postdoctoral fellowship at MIT, he joined the University of Colorado Boulder faculty in 1971.

The Biennial John A. Pople Lectures in Theoretical and Computational Chemistry was established by Carnegie Mellon's Department of Chemistry to bring leaders in the field of computational chemistry to campus to honor Nobel Laureate and former Carnegie Mellon Professor John A. Pople's contributions to science.