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William T. Pennington

Dr. William T. PenningtonAlumni Distinguished Professor
Inorganic Chemistry

Phone: (864) 656-4200 or 656-2896
Office: 377 Hunter Laboratories

Research Interests | Publications

Dr. Bill Pennington, Professor and Director of the Molecular Structure Center, received his B.A. in chemistry from Hendrix College (1977) and his Ph.D. from the University of Arkansas (1983) working with Professor A.W. Cordes in inorganic chemistry. He was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Illinois, working with Professors Iain Paul and David Curtin in the area of solid state organic chemistry, and spent two years at Molecular Structure Corporationin College Station, Texas, before coming to Clemson in 1987. Dr. Pennington has over 260 publications in the areas of X-ray crystallography and solid state chemistry, and serves as Editor of the Journal of Chemical Crystallography. He also serves as Director of the EUREKA! program, a summer research program for incoming Calhoun Honors students. In 2000, Dr. Pennington received the Award of Excellence for Teaching in the Sciences at Clemson University and the South Carolina Governor’s Award for Excellence in Science Awareness in 2002. In 2007 he received the Class of 1940 Douglas W. Bradbury Award for Contributions to the Calhoun Honors College, in 2008, the Class of 1939 Award for Faculty Excellence, and in 2009, the Philip H. Prince Award for Innovative Teaching. In 2010, he received the Charles H. Stone Award from the Carolina-Piedmont section of the ACS, and in 2012 was named as an Alumni Distinguished Professor.

Research Interests

example oneDr. Pennington's research is focused on the crystal chemistry of materials involving halogen bonding (Lewis acid-Lewis base interactions). Like hydrogen bonding, this interaction is strong, directed and selective, making it ideal for crystal design. Donor-acceptor complexes possessing halogen bonding have been prepared in which small acceptor molecules serve as structural auxiliaries, templates and protecting groups. Applications involving these complexes include interconversion of polymorphic donors by controlled solid phase decomposition of halogen-bonded complexes; design of porous materials by halogen bonding directed topopolymerization of diacetylenes and diolefins followed by removal of acceptor molecules; and synthesis of multifunctional macrocycles using halogen-bonded templates.

Dr. Pennington is also interested in the structural characterization of single-crystal, multicrystalline and amorphous materials through X-ray diffraction and scattering techniques. This includes the investigation of polymer electrolyte membranes used in fuel cell technology and the online analysis of fiber structure in polymeric materials.



For a full listing of publications and citation information go here.

Kobra, K.; O’Donnell, S.; Ferrari, A.; McMillen, C.D.; Pennington, W. T “Halogen bonding and triiodide asymmetry in cocrystals of triphenylmethylphosphonium triiodide with organoiodines.” New J. Chem. 2018, 42, 10518-10528.

Resnati, G.; Pennington, W. T “The halogen bond: a new avenue in recognition and self-assembly.” New J. Chem. 2018, 42, 10461-10462.

Dawson, P; Zhang, Y.; Pennington, W.; Hanks, T.; Northcutt, J. “Polydiacetylene sensor interaction with food sanitizers and surfactants.” Food Chem. 2017, 221, 515-520.

Camper, N.D.; Gum, J.M.; Lyles, D.E.; Pennington, W.T.; Beam, C.F.; Metz, C.R. “Antitumor activity of selected derivatives of pyrazole-benzenesulfonaamides from dilithiated C(a), N-phenylhydrazones and lithiated methyl 2-(aminosulfonyl)benzoate.” J.S.C.A.S. 2017, 15, 27-29.

Chase Mabe, P.J.; Knick, S.L.; Shuler, W.G.; Carlisle, S.S.; Smith, E.A.; Puciaty, A.J.; McFadden, T.M.C.; Potter, C.; Metz, C.R.; Beam, C.F.; Pennington, W.T.; VanDerveer, D.G; McMillan, C.D. “Preparation of a Select Tautomer of Various Unsymmetrical 1,3,5-Pentanetriones, (1Z,4Z)-1-(Aryl)-1,5-dihydroxy-5-phenylpenta-1,4-dien-3-ones, a 4H-1-benzothiopyran-4-one, and a 2-(2-oxoyl)quinolin-4(1H)-one.” Ind. Eng. Chem. Res. 201554, 7207–7211.

Metz, C.R.; Radke, J.L.; Shuler, W.G.; Celli, M.G.; McMillen, C.D.; Pennington, W.T.; Beam, C. F. “Preparation of Spiro[benzopyran-isoxazoles] from the condensation-cyclization of oxime 1,4-dianions with select coumarins.” J. Chem. Cryst. 2014, 44, 401-406.

Thakker, P.U.; Aru, R.G.; Sun, C.; Pennington, W.T; Siegfried, A.M.; Marder, E.; Wagenknecht, P.S. “Synthesis of trans Bis-alkynyl Complexes of Co(III) Supported by a Tetradentate Macrocyclic Amine:  A Spectroscopic, Structural, and Electrochemical Analysis of π-Interactions and Electronic Communication in the CC-M-CC Structural Unit,” Inorg. Chim. Acta 2014, 411, 158-164.

Sharma, B.; Hill, S.C.; Liff, S.; Pennington, W.T.; Smith, Jr. D.W. “Perfluorocyclohexenyl (PFCH) Aryl Ether Polymers via Polycondensation of Decafluorocyclohexene (DFCH) with Bisphenols,” J. Poly. Sci. A 2014, 52, 232-238.

Advanced Materials for Biological and Biomedical Applications, Editors: M.Oyen, A. Lendlein, W.T. Pennington, L. Stanciu, S. Svenson, M. Behl. MRS Symposium Proceedings, Cambridge University Press, Volume 1569, 2013.

Thomas, A.R.; Shuler, W.G.; Smith, E.A.; Carlisle, S.S.; Knick, S.L.; Puciaty, A.J.; Metz, C.R.; VanDerveer, D.G.; McMillen, C.D.; Pennington, W.T.; Beam, C.F. “Preparation and X-ray Crystal Structure of (2Z,4E)-5-(4-substituted phenyl)-3-hydroxy-1-phenylpenta-2,4-dien-1-ones  (Curcumin Analogs) from the Condensation-Elimination of Dilithiated 1-Benzoylacetone with Substituted Benzaldehydes,” J. Chem. Cryst. 2013, 43, 629-635.

Corti, S., Pennington, W.T., and DesMarteau, D.D. “Trifluoromethylation of perfluorinated diacylfluorides: Synthesi of the diketone CF3C(O)CF2C(O)CF3 and of the new perfluorinated diol (CF3)2C(OH)CF2C(OH(CF3)2,” Acta Chim. Slovenica 2013, 60, 556-560.

S.C. Hill, Y. Htet, J. Kauffman, I.Y. Han, P.L. Dawson, W.T. Pennington, and T.W. Hanks, “Polydiacetylene-based Smart Packaging,” in Physical Methods in Food Analysis Tunick, M.H. and Charles I. Onwulata, C.I., Eds. ACS Symp. Ser. 2013, 1138, 137-154.

Pennington, W.T.; Resnati, G.; Taylor, M.S. “Halogen bonding: from self-assembly to materials and biomolecules,” CrystEngComm 2013, 15, 3057.

R.D. Walsh, J.M. Smith, T.W. Hanks, and W.T. Pennington, “Computational and Crystallographic Studies of Pseudo-polyhalides,” Cryst. Growth & Des. 2012, 12, 2759-2768.

Shuler, W.G., Smith, E.A., Hess, S.M., McFadden, T.M.C., Metz, C.R., VanDerveer, D.G., Pennington, W.T., Mabe, P.J., Knick S.L. and Beam, C.F. “Preparation and X-Ray Crystal Structure of 3-(4-(Dimethylamino)phenyl)-2-(phenylamino)isoquinolin-1(2H)-one, 3-(4-Methoxyphenyl)-2-(phenylamino)isoquinolin-1(2H)-one, and 2-Methyl-N-(4-methylbenzoyl)-N-phenylbenzohydrazide from Polylithiated 2-methylbenzoic Acid Phenylhydrazide and Methyl 4-dimethylaminobenzoate, Methyl 4-methoxybenzoate, or Methyl 4-methylbenzoate,” J. Chem. Cryst. 2012, 42, 952-959.

H.D. Arman, E.R. Rafferty, C.A. Bayse, and W.T. Pennington, “Complementary Selenium···Iodine Halogen Bonding and Phenyl Embraces: Cocrystals of Triphenylphosphine selenide with organoiodides,” Cryst. Growth & Des. 2012, 12, 4315-4323.

Babu, B.; Lee, M.; Lee, L.; Strobel, R.; Brockway, O.; Nickols, A.; Sjoholm, R.; Tzou, S.; Chavda, S.; Desta, D.; Fraley, G.; Siegfried, A.; Pennington, W.; Hartley R.M.; Westbrook, C.; Mooberry, S.L.; Kiakos, K.; Hartley, J.A.; Lee, M. “Acetyl analogs of combretastatin A-4: Synthesis and biological studies,” Biorg. Med. Chem. 2011, 19, 2359-2367.

Smith, E.A.; Potter, C.; Kennedy, Z.C.; Puciaty, A.J.; Acevedo-Jake, A.M.; Hersey, S.D.; Metz, C.R.; Pennington, W.T.; VanDerveer, D.G.; Beam, Charles F. “Preparation of NH-Pyrazoleacetic Acid Anilides from Trilithiated Acetoacetanilide, Select Aromatic Esters, and Hydrazine,” J.Heterocyclic Chem. 2010, 47, 147-152.

Arman, H.D.; Gieseking, R.L.; Hanks, T.W.; Pennington, W.T. “Complementary Halogen and Hydrogen Bonding: Sulfur···Iodine Interactions and Thioamide Ribbons,” Chem. Commun. 2010, 46, 1854-1856.

Metz, C.R.; Knight, J.D.; Pastine, S.J.; Pennington, W.T.; Beam, C.F. “Synthesis and crystal structure determination of 3-phenyl-2-(2-phenylhydrazino)-4H-1-benzothiopyran-4-one,” J. Chem. Cryst. 2010, 40, 536-540.

Potter, C.; Rhoden Smith, A.M.; Metz, C.R.; Pennington, W.T.; VanDerveer, D.G.; Beam, C.F. “The synthesis and crystal structure determination of phenyl 2-(3,4-dihydro-1(2H)naphthalenylidine)hydrazinecarboxylate and phenyl (2,4-dichlorophenylmethylene) Hydrazinecarboxylate,” J. Chem. Cryst. 2010, 40, 541-545.

Metz, C.R.; Knight, J.D.; Dawsey, A.C.; Pennington, W.T.; VanDerveer, D.G.; Brown, J.B.; Bigham, K.J.; Beam, C.F. “Synthesis and crystal structure determination of methyl 2-acetyl-5'-phenyl-2Hspiro[benzo[d]isothiazole-3,3'-pyrazole]-1,1-dioxide-2'(4'H)-carboxylate and methyl 2-acetyl-5'-(2-thienyl)-2H-spiro[benzo[d]isothiazole-3,3'-pyrazole]-1,1-dioxide-2'(4'H)-carboxylate,” J. Chem. Cryst. 2010, 40, 296-301.