John W. Keller

Biographical Sketch

Dr. Keller, shown with a space-filling model of DNA, is a leader in the use of molecular modeling and computational chemistry in undergraduate education.


Research Description

Please note: I retired on Jan. 1, 2012 and I will not be taking new students. However I remain active in the area of computational chemistry, and as a consultant.

Computational Chemistry. We have undertaken several computational studies based on student projects in undergraduate lecture and lab classes. These take advantage of UAF's excellent facilities for computational chemistry of the Arctic Region Supercomputing Center and the department's WebMO-Gaussian09 facility. Several projects concern the properties of non-covalent complexes of carboxylic acids and nitrogenous bases with various partners such as sulfur dioxide.  Other projects relate to the possible occurrence of low-barrier hydrogen bonds in enzyme active sites, computational studies on cyclodextrins and modified cyclodextrins (collaboration with Tom Green), and mechanisms of Lewis acid-catalyzed Diels-Alder reactions (collaboration with Tom Clausen).

Selected Publications
  1. J. W. Keller and C. E. Fabbri, "Headspace GC-MS Analysis of Halogenated Volatile Organic Compounds in Aqueous Samples: An Experiment for General Chemistry Laboratory", Journal of Chemical Education, 2012, 89(6), 803–806. DOI 10.1021/ed10090v.
  2. J. W. Keller, B. L. Harrod, and S. A. Chowdhury, "Theoretical Study of Formic Acid-Sulfur Dioxide Dimers," Journal of Physical Chemistry A, 114, 13182-13188(2010). DOI 10.1021/jp1076214.
  3. J. W. Keller, "Using Curved Arrows for Retrosynthetic Analysis", The Chemical Educator, 15, 331-333(2010). DOI 10.1333/s00897102301a
  4. J. W. Keller, "Lewis Acid Catalyzed Diels-Alder Reaction of Carvone with Isoprene. Using Two-Dimensional NMR and Molecular Modeling to Solve a Stereo- and Regiochemical Puzzle", The Chemical Educator, 11, 262-266 (2006). DOI 10.1333/s00897061055a. 
JK at the col between Blackcomb and Horstman glaciers, Whistler-Blackcomb ski area, Whistler, B.C. 3-11-2009
  • B.S. 1968, The Ohio State University (Chemistry)
  • Ph.D. 1976, University of Wisconsin-Madison (Chemistry)

phone: 907.888.7278 
fax: 907.474.5640
John W. Keller
Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry
University of Alaska Fairbanks
Fairbanks, AK 99775-6160

Back to Top