- B.S. Beloit College (2001)
- Ph.D. University of Notre Dame (2008)
- Postdoctoral Research Associate, NEAT-ORU, University of California at Davis (2008-2010)
Synthesis and characterization of novel actinide-based (232Th, 238U, 237Np) nanotubes and molecular clusters; X-ray diffraction and scattering techniques; transport and mobility of nuclear materials in aqueous environmental systems; radiochemistry.
Inorganic mineral species influence most of the physical, chemical, and biological processes that occur in the natural world. However, soluble inorganic nanoclusters (0.5 - 10 nm) may be the driving force for many of these processes as they exist in nearly every naturally occurring aqueous system and are among the most reactive components in the environment. Research in the Forbes group focuses on obtaining a molecular level understanding these clusters by synthesizing and characterizing environmentally relevant model compounds.
A major research thrust in the Forbes lab is to investigate the transport of actinides on nanophase colloidal particles present in aqueous systems. Actinides are a major component of high-level nuclear waste and are particularly problematic due to their long-lived radioactivity and toxicity. Actinides such as Pu(IV) has defied traditional transport modeling that suggest limited transport and has been observed several kilometers away from the original source. Detailed size fractionation of the species present in groundwater indicates that it is associated with iron oxide colloids with diameters less than 1.5 nm.
By synthesizing and structurally characterizing heterometallic actinide nanoclusters that contain an iron oxide core, we can begin to gain a molecular understanding of the interactions between the contaminant and the colloidal species. These clusters can then be used as spectroscopic standards to probe for the presence of heterometallic actinide nanoclusters in natural aqueous solutions.
Students in the Forbes group will learn in a variety of synthesis techniques, structural analysis using single crystal X-ray diffraction, and spectroscopic characterization of materials. In addition, many of the research projects in the group will involve working with actinides such as uranium and thorium and students will be trained to safely work with radioactive materials
- Unruh, D. K., K Gojdas, and T.Z. Forbes*. “Isolation and structural characterization of an unusual trimeric uranyl molecular species in the presence of iminodiacetic acid.” Submitted, Inorganic Chemistry.
- Alessi, D.S., J. E.S. Symanowski, T. Z. Forbes, A. N. Quicksall, G.E. Sigmon, P. C. Burns, J. B. Fein. “Neptunium Release from Np(V)-incorporated Soddyite and Boltwoodite. Accepted, Journal of Nuclear Material.
- Abeysinghe, S., D. K. Unruh, and T. Z. Forbes*. “Crystallization of Keggin-type polyaluminum cations by supramolecular interactions with 2,6-napthalene disulfonate.” (2012) Crystal Growth and Design 12(4) 2044-2051.
- Forbes, T.Z., A.V. Radha, and A. Navrotsky “The energetics of nanophase calcium carbonate.” (2011), Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta. 24(15) 7893-7905
- Forbes, T.Z., J. Kurzman, R. Sedhedri, and A. Navrotsky “The energetics of La4LiAuO8.” (2011) Journal of Materials Research 26(10) 1188-1192.
- Forbes, T.Z., D. McInnis, P. Horan, T. Devine, and P.C. Burns. “Alteration of secondary uranyl mineral analogues in the presence of hydrogen peroxide.” (2011) American Mineralogist 96(1) 202-206
- Forbes, T.Z., M. Nyman, M.A. Rodriguiz, and A. Navrotsky. “Energetics of Lanthanum Tantalate Materials.” (2010) Journal of Solid State Chemistry 183(11) 2516-2521.
- Radha, A. V., T.Z. Forbes, C. Killian, P.U.P.A. Gilbert, and A. Navrotsky. “Crystallization Enthalpies of Synthetic and Biogenic Amorphous Calcium Carbonate.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (2010) 107(38) 16438-16443.
- Forbes, T.Z., and S.C. Sevov. “Metal-Organic Frameworks with Direct Transition Metal-Sulfonate Interactions and Charge-Assisted Hydrogen Bonds.” Inorganic Chemistry (2009) 48(14) 6873-6878.
- Forbes, T.Z. and P.C. Burns “Synthesis, structure, and spectroscopy of (NpO2)2(SO4)(H2O)4: prevalence of cation-cation interactions and cationic nets in neptunyl sulfate compounds.” Journal of Solid State Chemistry (2009) 182(1) 43-48.