Malkiat S. Johal
Associate Professor of Physical Chemistry





Office: Seaver Chemistry Laboratory, Room 110 (Office), Room 23 (Research laboratory)
Telephone:  Office: (909) 607-4253, Lab: (909) 607-7959, Cell: (909) 275-1121
Fax:  (909) 607-7726

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Dr. Johal joined the department in July 2006. He teaches courses in Accelerated General Chemistry, Physical Chemistry (Thermodynamics, Statistical Mechanics, and Chemical Kinetics), Soft Nanomaterials, and Physical Chemistry Laboratory. His research activities focus on using self-assembly and ionic adsorption processes to fabricate nano-materials for optical and biochemical applications. Undergraduate research students are heavily involved in both the construction of and the detailed characterization of ultra-thin assemblies. These functional materials include bioactive surfaces (immobilized proteins) within polyelectrolyte multilayers, asymmetrically orientated surfactant multilayers, and self-assembled polyelectrolytes with desirable photoluminescent, photovoltaic and NLO-active properties. Professor Johalís laboratory also explores fundamental phenomena such as ion-pair complexation, adsorption, surface wettability, and intermolecular non-covalent interactions that lead to highly ordered structures. His laboratory is also exploring the use of functionalized stacked waveguides and piezoelectric quartz crystal resonators as platforms for chemical and biological detection, catalysis, and the nano-fabrication of photovoltaic and organic LED materials. Research students in his laboratory use a variety of surface analysis tools including Dual Polarization Interferometry, Quartz-Crystal Microbalance with Dissipation Monitoring, Surface Tensiometry, Spectroscopy (e.g. ATR-FTIR), X-Ray Reflectivity, Multi-Wavelength Ellipsometry, and Contact Angle analysis.

After receiving his Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry from the University of Cambridge, Dr. Johal was a Postdoctoral Research Associate at Los Alamos National Laboratory, where he worked on nonlinear optical techniques utilizing optical parametric generation/amplification for sum-frequency generation and second-harmonic generation. Before joining Pomona College, he was an Associate Professor of Physical Chemistry at New College of Florida. Follow the links above or below for course related material or for further information about his research program.






Understanding Nanomaterials by Malkiat S. Johal


Paperback: 336 pages

Publisher: CRC Press; 1 edition (April 5, 2011)

SBN-10: 1420073109

ISBN-13: 978-1420073102


This textbook provides a coherent overview of the fundamental principles underlying nanomaterials fabrication, as well as a discussion of the characterization and application of these materials. The author takes an interdisciplinary approach, highlighting the theory and tools contributed by chemistry, biology, physics, medicine, and engineering. Real world examples related to energy, the environment, and medicine are included throughout the text that underscore the technological applications.



Understanding Nanomaterials covers the following topics.


Chapter 1. A Brief Introduction to Nanoscience: The Need for Nanoscience Education; The Nanoscale Dimension and the Scope of Nanoscience; Self-Assembly; Supramolecular Science; Sources of Information in Nanoscience.


Chapter 2. Intermolecular Interactions and Self-Assembly: Intermolecular Forces and Self-Assembly; Ion-Ion Interactions; Ion-Dipole Interactions; Dipole-Dipole Interactions; Interactions Involving Induced Dipoles; Dispersion Forces; Overlap Repulsion; Total Intermolecular Potentials; Hydrogen Bonds; The Hydrophobic Effect; Electrostatic Forces; The Electrical Double Layer; The Debye Length; Interactions Between Charged Surfaces in a Liquid; Intermolecular Forces and Aggregation; Simple Models Describing Electronic Structure; The Particle in a Box Model; Conjugation in Organic Molecules; Aggregation and Electronic Structure; π-π Stacking Interactions.


Chapter 3. Rudiments of Surface Nanoscience: Fundamentals of Surface Science; The Surface Energy of Solids and Liquids; Surface Free Energy of Adsorbed Monolayers; Contact Angles and Wetting Phenomena; Nanomaterials and Super Hydrophobic Surfaces; Adsorption Phenomena: Self-Assembled Monolayers (SAMs); Simple Adsorption Isotherms; Other Useful Adsorption Isotherms; Surfactant Chemistry; Micelle and Microemulsion Formation; The Determination of Surface Excess: The CMC and the Cross-Sectional Area Per Molecule.


Chapter 4. Characterization at the Nanoscale: Surface Tensiometry: The Surface Tensiometer; Quartz Crystal Microbalance; The Piezoelectric Effect; QCM Principles; QCM-D and Dissipation (D); Modern QCM-D Setup; Ellipsometry; Basic Principles of Electromagnetic Theory and Polarized Light; Basic Principles of Ellipsometry; Obtaining the Thickness of Films:Optical Parameters Del (Δ) and Psi (ψ); The Ellipsometer; Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR); Principles of SPR; SPR Instrument Setup; Dual Polarization Interferometry (DPI); Waveguide Basics; Waveguide Interferometry and the Effective Refractive Index; Principles of Dual Polarization Interferometry (DPI); Spectroscopic Methods; Interactions Between Light and Matter; UV-Visible Spectroscopy; The Absorption of Visible Light by a Nanofilm; Molecular Fluorescence Spectroscopy; Vibrational Spectroscopy Methods; Raman Spectroscopy; Nonlinear Spectroscopic Methods; An Introduction to Nonlinear Optics; Second Harmonic Generation; Sum Frequency Generation Spectroscopy; X-Ray Spectroscopy; Imaging Nanostructures; Imaging Ellipsometry; Scanning Probe Methods; Transmission Electron Microscopy; Near Field Scanning Optical Microscopy; Light Scattering Methods; The Measurement of Scattered Light: Determining the Aggregation Number of Micelles; Dynamic Light Scattering.


Chapter 5. Types and Uses of Some Nanomaterials: Supramolecular Machines; Model Dye Systems; Photorelaxation; Formation and Properties of the Exciton; Nanowires; Basic Quantum Mechanics of Nanowires; Conductivity; Nanowire Synthesis; Carbon Nanotubes; Carbon nanotube Structure; Some Properties of Nanotubes; Methods for Growing Nanotubes; Catalyst Induced Growth Mechanism; Quantum Dots; Optical Properties; Synthesis of Quantum Dots; In Vivo Molecular and Cell Imaging; Langmuir-Blodgett Films; Langmuir Films; Polyelectrolytes; Electrostatic Self-Assembly; Charge Reversal and Interpenetration; Multilayer Formation; Model Phospholipid Bilayer Formation and Characterization; Black Lipid Membranes; Solid Supported Lipid Bilayers; Polymer Cushioned Phospholipid Bilayers; Fluorescence Recovery After Photobleaching (FRAP); Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET); Fluorescence Interference Contrast Microscopy (FLIC); Self-Assembled Monolayers; Thiols on Gold; Silanes on Glass; Patterning; Optical Lithography; Soft Lithography; Nanosphere Lithography; Patterning Using AFM; DNA and Lipid Microarrays; Using Microarrays; Array Fabrication; Arrays of Supported Bilayers and Microfluidic Platforms.