Patrick L. Holland

Professor of Chemistry
Member of Yale faculty since 2013

Web site:

Research The Holland group studies compounds containing inexpensive metals like iron and cobalt, with the goal of understanding their reactions in detail and increasing their potential for use in catalysis. We do this by preparing new molecules that are highly reactive. In some cases, the compounds have weak metal-ligand multiple bonds, and in others there are open sites for reactions on the metal. We specialize in compounds where the metal has very few bonds, and have done many detailed studies on this rare and exciting type of compound.

A major part of our research program has focused on iron complexes for nitrogen fixation. This is relevant to the industrial Haber-Bosch process for fertilizer production, and to nitrogenase, the natural enzyme that converts atmospheric nitrogen into ammonia. Other research in our laboratory has addressed solar production of hydrogen, catalytic alkene and fluorocarbon reduction, redox-active ligands, engineered metalloproteins, and fundamental organometallic mechanisms. More detail on our research is available at the Holland Group Web site.

Our research provides an interdisciplinary training environment that develops students' skills in synthesis, biological inorganic chemistry, organometallic chemistry, mechanistic techniques, and spectroscopy.

A.B. Princeton University, 1993
Ph.D. University of California at Berkeley, 1997
Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Minnesota, 1997-2000

NSF CAREER Award, 2002
Sloan Fellowship, 2003
Fulbright Scholar, 2012
Blavatnik Award for Young Scientists, 2013
Fellow of the AAAS, 2014

Recent Publications

M.M. Rodriguez, E. Bill, W.W. Brennessel, P.L. Holland. N2 Reduction and Hydrogenation to Ammonia by a Molecular Iron-Potassium Complex. Science 2011, 334, 780-783.

R.E. Cowley, N.A. Eckert, S. Vaddadi, T.M. Figg, T R. Cundari, P.L. Holland. Selectivity and Mechanism of Hydrogen Atom Transfer by an Isolable Imidoiron(III) Complex. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2011, 133, 9796-9811.

T.R. Dugan, X. Sun, E.V. Rybak-Akimova, O. Olatunji-Ojo, T.R. Cundari, P L. Holland. A Masked Two-Coordinate Cobalt(I) Complex That Activates C-F Bonds. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2011, 133, 12418-12421.

K.P. Chiang, C.C. Scarborough, M. Horitani, N.S. Lees, K. Ding, T.R. Dugan, W.W. Brennessel, E. Bill, B.M. Hoffman, P.L. Holland. Characterization of the Fe-H Bond in a Three-Coordinate Terminal Hydride Complex of Iron(I). Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2012, 51, 3658-3662.

M.M. Rodriguez, B.D. Stubbert, W.W. Brennessel, E. Bill, P.L. Holland. Isolation and Characterization of Stable Iron(I)-Sulfide Complexes. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2012, 51, 8246-8250.

Z. Han, F. Qiu, R. Eisenberg, P.L. Holland, T.D. Krauss. Robust Photogeneration of H2 in Water Using Semiconductor Nanocrystals and a Nickel Catalyst. Science 2012, 338, 1321-1324.

M.P. McLaughlin, M. Retegan, E. Bill, T.M. Payne, H.S. Shafaat, S. Peña, J. Sudhamsu, A.E. Ensign, B.R. Crane, F. Neese, P.L. Holland. Azurin as a protein scaffold for a low-coordinate non-heme iron site with a small-molecule binding pocket. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2012, 134, 19746-19757.

T.R. Dugan, E. Bill, K.C. MacLeod, G.J. Christian, R.E. Cowley, W.W. Brennessel, S. Ye, F. Neese, P.L. Holland. Reversible C-C Bond Formation Between Redox-Active Pyridine Ligands in Iron Complexes. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2012, 134, 20352-20364.

K.C. MacLeod & P.L. Holland. Recent Developments in Homogeneous Dinitrogen Reduction by Molybdenum and Iron. Nature Chem. 2013, 5, 559-565.

C. Chen, T.R. Dugan, W.W. Brennessel, & P.L. Holland, Z-Selective Alkene Isomerization by High-Spin Cobalt(II) Complexes. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2014, 136, 945-955.

K.C. MacLeod, D.J. Vinyard, & P.L. Holland, A Multi-iron System Capable of Rapid N2 Formation and N2 Cleavage. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2014, 136, 10226-10229.

K. Grubel, W.W. Brennessel, B.Q. Mercado, & P.L. Holland, Alkali Metal Control over N-N Cleavage in Iron Complexes. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2014, 136, 16807-16816.

Patrick Holland

Research Interests