Structure Activity Relationships in Homogeneous Catalysis

Meeting Program — September 2017

Thomas Colacot
Thomas Cola­cot
Tech­ni­cal Fel­low & Glob­al R & D Man­ag­er
John­son Matthey


Abstract — Homo­ge­neous catal­y­sis is a mol­e­c­u­lar phe­nom­e­non, where the struc­ture of the cat­a­lyst plays a sig­nif­i­cant role on the activ­i­ty and selec­tiv­i­ty of a cat­alyt­ic reac­tion. Three cas­es stud­ies will be dis­cussed dur­ing the talk to explain the phe­nom­e­na. The top­ics are

  1. High puri­ty pal­la­di­um acetate vs com­mer­cial in organ­ic syn­the­sis
  2. Ir pre cat­a­lysts for C-H acti­vat­ed bory­la­tion
  3. Gen­er­a­tion of L1Pd(0) cat­a­lysts for advanced cross cou­pling.


  • Book: New Trends in Cross Cou­pling: The­o­ry and Appli­ca­tions, ed. Thomas J. Cola­cot, Roy­al Soci­ety of Chem­istry, Cam­bridge, UK, 2015. ISBN: 978–1-84973–896-5
  • Carin C. C. Johans­son Seechurn, Thomas Sperg­er, There­sa. G. Scrase, Franziska. Schoenebeck and Thomas. J. Cola­cot*, J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2017 (DOI: 10.1021/jacs.7b01110). This work was fea­tured in the April 5 th issue of C & EN. Please see: http://​acsmeet​ings​.cen​mag​.org/​c​h​e​m​i​s​t​s​-​g​e​t​-​b​e​t​t​e​r​-​a​c​q​u​a​i​n​t​e​d​-​w​i​t​h​-​p​a​l​l​a​d​i​u​m​-​c​a​t​a​l​y​s​ts/
  • William A. Car­ole and Thomas J. Cola­cot* Chem. Eur. J, 2016, 22, 7686 (with jour­nal cov­er graph­ics – this work was fea­tured in C & EN. page 20, May 2 nd, 2016)
  • Peter G. Gild­ner, Andrew DeAn­ge­lis, and Thomas J. Cola­cot*, Org. Lett., 2016, 18 (6), 1442–1445 DOI: 10.1021/acs.orglett.6b0037
  • William A. Car­ole, Jonathan Bradley, Mis­bah Sar­war and Thomas J. Cola­cot* Org. Lett., 2015, 17 (21), 5472–5475. DOI: 10.1021/acs.orglett. 5b02835
  • Thomas. J. Cola­cot, Angew Chem. Int. Ed. 2016, 54, 15611–15612.
  • Peter G. Gild­ner and Thomas J. Cola­cot* Organometallics, 2015, 34 (23), 5497–5508. DOI: 10.1021/acs.organomet.5b00567
  • Andrew J. DeAn­ge­lis , Peter G. Gild­ner , Ruis­han Chow , and Thomas J. Cola­cot* J. Org. Chem., 2015, 80 (13), pp 6794–6813, DOI: 10.1021/acs.joc.5b01005
  • Carin C. C. Johans­son Seechurn, Vil­vanathan Sivaku­mar, Deep­ak Satoskar and Thomas J. Cola­cot*, Organometallics, 2014, 33, 3514−3522.

Biog­ra­phy — Dr. Thomas J. Cola­cot received his Ph.D. in Chem­istry from IIT Madras in 1989, fol­low­ing a B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Chem­istry from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Ker­ala in 1981 and 1983, respec­tive­ly. After his doc­tor­al and post-doc­tor­al stud­ies in the US, Dr. Cola­cot went on to pur­sue an edu­ca­tion in man­age­ment, acquir­ing an MBA from Penn­syl­va­nia State Uni­ver­si­ty in 2005, while work­ing at John­son Matthey. Before join­ing John­son Matthey in 1995, Dr. Cola­cot had also worked as a Research Asso­ciate South­ern Methodist Uni­ver­si­ty (TX, USA) on a project fund­ed by Advanced Tech­nol­o­gy Pro­gram, as an Assis­tant Pro­fes­sor at Flori­da A&M Uni­ver­si­ty, and as a Post-Doc­tor­al/Teach­ing Fel­low at Uni­ver­si­ty of Alaba­ma. Hav­ing climbed up the ranks from Devel­op­ment Asso­ciate (bench chemist), Dr. Cola­cot is cur­rent­ly the Tech­ni­cal Fel­low at John­son Matthey, USA, the high­est tech­ni­cal rank for a sci­en­tist with reports from dif­fer­ent parts of the world.

As a researcher, Dr. Cola­cot has focused on many areas of homoge­nous catal­y­sis, par­tic­u­lar­ly becom­ing pro­fi­cient in pal­la­di­um-cat­alyzed cross-cou­pling. He also has exten­sive expe­ri­ence in organometal­lic and organ­ic syn­the­ses, and in process chem­istry. His work is reflect­ed in sev­er­al patents to his name, more than one hun­dred peer-reviewed pub­li­ca­tions, and numer­ous invit­ed lec­tures and sem­i­nars span­ning India, USA, Chi­na, and Europe. His recent­ly edit­ed book: New Trends in Cross Cou­pling: The­o­ry and Appli­ca­tions by the Roy­al Soci­ety of Chem­istry is wide­ly used in acad­e­mia and indus­try. Through his work, Dr. Cola­cot is cred­it­ed with being a lead­ing influ­ence in devel­op­ing excep­tion­al cat­alyt­ic sys­tems for the advance­ment of met­al-cat­alyzed syn­thet­ic organ­ic chem­istry for real world appli­ca­tions such as drug devel­op­ment, OLED’s/liquid crys­tals and agri­cul­ture. His empha­sis in design­ing cat­a­lysts and cat­alyt­ic process­es has been on their applic­a­bil­i­ty in indus­tri­al set­tings, par­tic­u­lar­ly per­tain­ing to agri­cul­ture, elec­tron­ics and med­i­cine. He is the finest exam­ple of a link between acad­e­mia and indus­try.

Dr. Colacot’s con­tri­bu­tions to the field have result­ed in many awards and acco­lades, amongst them the recent pres­ti­gious IIT Madras 2016 Dis­tin­guished Alum­nus Award for Tech­nol­o­gy Inno­va­tions and Chem­i­cal Research Soci­ety of India (2016 CRSI) Medal for out­stand­ing con­tri­bu­tions in Organometallics and Homo­ge­neous Catal­y­sis. He is the first Indi­an to be award­ed the Amer­i­can Chem­i­cal Soci­ety (ACS) Nation­al Award in Indus­tri­al Chem­istry in 2015. He also received the 2015 IPMI Hen­ry Alfred Award (2015) from the Inter­na­tion­al Pre­cious Met­al Insti­tute, spon­sored by the BASF. In 2014 he received the Indi­an Amer­i­can Ker­ala Cul­ture and Civic Cen­ter Award for his out­stand­ing con­tri­bu­tions in Applied Sci­ences. In addi­tion, he received Roy­al Soci­ety of Chem­istry 2012 Applied Catal­y­sis Award and Medal. He is also a Fel­low of the Roy­al Soci­ety of Chem­istry, UK.