Personal tools
You are here: Home People Science Division Directory Daniel L Akins

Daniel L Akins

Daniel L Akins

Chair & Louis J. Curtman Professor

85 St Nicholas Terrace

New York , NY 10027
Office Phone: (212) 650-6953


Dr. Akins has been a Professor of Chemistry at The City College of New York since 1981, and director of the CUNY-Center for Analysis of Structure and Interfaces since 1988. He holds a doctorate in physical chemistry from the University of California at Berkeley, received in 1968. His mentor at Berkeley was Dr. C. Bradley Moore. From 1968 to 1969, Dr. Akins was a post doctoral associate at the Institute of Molecular Biophysics at The Florida State University (FSU), under the guidance of Dr. Michael Kasha, director. From 1969 to 1970 he served as a visiting assistant professor in the Chemistry Department at FSU. In 1970, Dr. Akins joined the faculty of the Chemistry Department of the University of South Florida, in Tampa, where he rose through the ranks from assistant to associate professor of physical chemistry. In 1977, Dr. Akins took the reins as visiting program director of the physical chemistry subsection of the Dynamics Program at the National Science Foundation. After directing the Dynamics Program for two years, in 1979 Dr. Akins assumed a position as a senior scientist at the Polaroid Corporation, until 1981. Dr. Akins has been published in numerous professional journals. He has extensively lectured at conferences and universities, both national and international. Dr. Akins is a member of several professional organizations, including the American Chemical Society and the Society for Applied Spectroscopy. His principal research focus involves quantum properties of molecular nanostructures and the exploitation of such properties for formulating new nanomaterials with uses in molecular photonic devices (MPDs) and/or chemical sensors. Small groupings of molecules (principally, in our case, so-called molecular aggregates) serve as the active agents. For MPDs the same types of photonic/optoelectronic applications as systems derived from epitaxially prepared inorganic semiconductor superlattices or conjugated organic polymers are anticipated. For chemical sensor applications, the aim is to form robust and highly manipulable new nanomaterials with unique spectral properties for analyses purposes.

Research conducted, more generally, involves: (1) syntheses of semiconductor and magnetic oxide nanoparticles and nanorods within mesoporous aluminosilicates and silicates; (2) fabrication of carbon nanotubes within various matrices; (3) spectroscopic and dynamical investigations of spontaneous and nonlinear laser Raman scattering by monomeric and aggregated molecules on metallic, semiconductor, vesicles surfaces and encapsulated within mesoporous materials; (4) excited state dynamics and determination of photophysical parameters for cyanine dyes and donor-acceptor systems that involve electron-transfer reactions; (5) Raman investigations of porphyrins in solution or adsorbed onto surfaces; (6) spectroscopic studies of biological tissues and herbs; and (7) quantum chemical calculations of porphyrins and dye molecules.

Recent Publications:


  • "Geometric and Electronic Properties of Porphyrin and its Derivatives," Metin Aydin and Daniel L. Akins, Chap. 10, DOI: 10.5772/64583 (2016); in Applications of Molecular Spectroscopy to Current Research in the Chemical and Biological Sciences, Mark T. Stauffer (Ed.), InTech, DOI: 10.5772/64583.  Available from:
  • "Infrared and Raman Spectroscopic Characterization of Porphyrin and its Derivatives," Metin Aydin and Daniel L. Akins, Chap. 7, (2016); in Applications of Molecular Spectroscopy to Current Research in the Chemical and Biological Sciences, Mark Stauffer (Ed.), InTech, DOI: 10.5772/64582.  Available from:
  • "Synthesis and Characterization of Quantum Dots: A Case Study Using PbS," Yi Pan, Yue Ru Li, Yu Zhao and Daniel L. Akins, J. Chem. Edu., 92, 1860-1865 (2015), DOI: 10.1021/ed5009415.
  • "Nanomolecular gas sensor architectures based on functionalized carbon nanotubes for vapor detection," Deon Hines, Henan Zhang, Mark H. Rümmeli, David Adebimpe and Daniel L. Akins, SPIE.DSS, Image Sensing Technologies: Materials, Devices, Systems, and Applications II., Baltimore, MD; 04/2015
  • "High-Yield Photolytic Generation of Brominated Single-walled Carbon Nanotubes and their Application for Gas Sensing," Deon Hines, Mark Rümmeli, David Adebimpe and Daniel L. Akins, Chem. Commun., 50, 11568-11571 (2014), doi: 10.1039/c4cc03702b.
  • "Controllable modification of electronic Structure of Carbon-Supported Core–Shell Cu@Pd Catalysts for formic acid oxidation," Ren, Mingjun; Zhou, Yi; Tao, Feifei; Zou, Zhiqing; Akins, Daniel; Yang, Hui, J. Phys. Chem. C 118, 12669−12675 (2014).
  • "Enhanced Raman Scattering by Molecular Nanoaggregates (Invited Review Article)," Daniel L. Akins, Nanomater Nanotechnol, 2014, 4:4. doi: 10.5772/58403.
  • "Highly alloyed PtRu black electrocatalysts for methanol oxidation prepared using magnesia nanoparticles as sacrificial templates," Liangliang Zou, Jing Guo, Juanying Liu, Zhiqing Zou, Daniel L. Akins and Hui Yang, Journal of Power Sources, 248, 356-362 (2014).
  • "Chemoresistive Responses of Functionalized SWNTs (559i)," Deon Hines, David O.B.A Adebimpe, Daniel L. Akins and Anthony Guiseppi-Elie, Amer. Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChe), 2013 Annual Meeting, Nanoscale Science and Engineering Forum.
  • "Synthesis of a Nanocomposite Composed of Reduced Graphene Oxide and Gold Nanoparticles," Henan Zhang, Deon Hines and Daniel L. Akins, Dalton Trans., 2014 Feb 14;43(6):2670-5. doi: 10.1039/c3dt52573b. Epub 2013 Dec 11.
  • "Vibrational and electronical properties of functionalized single-walled carbon nanotubes and double-walled boron nitride nanotubes," Metin Aydin and Daniel L. Akins in Physical and Chemical Properties of Carbon Nanotubes. Edited by: Satoru Suzuki. ISBN 978-953-51-1002-6;; Published 2013-02-27.
  • "Structure and performance of dielectric films based on self-assembled nanocrystals with a high dielectric constant," Limin Huang, Shuangyi Liu, Barry J Van Tassell, Xiaohua Liu, Andrew Byro, Henan Zhang, Eli S. Leland, Daniel L. Akins, Daniel A. Steingart, Jackie Li and Stephen O'Brien, Nanotechnology, 24, 414602-414615 (2013).
  • "A Study of the Effect of Heat-treatment on the Morphology of Nafion Ionomer Dispersion and 117 Membrane for use in the Passive DMFC," Ting Yuan, Haifeng Zhang,* Zhiqing Zou, Sufia Khatun, Daniel Akins, Yara Adam and Sophia Suarez, Membranes, 2(4), 841-854 (2012).
  • "Comprehensive Dielectric Performance of Bismuth Acceptor Doped BaTiO3 Based Nanocrystal Thin Film Capacitors," Shuangyi Liu, Henan Zhang, Lev Sviridov, Limin Huang, Xiaohua Liu, Jacopo Samson, Daniel L. Akins, Jackie Li and Stephen O’Brien, J. Mater. Chem., 22, 21862-21870 (2012); DOI: 10.1039/C2JM34044E.
  • "Synthesis and New Structure Shaping Mechanism of Silica Particles Formed at High pH," Henan Zhang, Yu Zhao and Daniel L. Akins, J. Solid State Chem., 194, 277–281 (October 2012).;
  • "Enhanced performance of a passive direct methanol fuel cell with decreased Nafion aggregate size within the cathode catalytic layer," Sophia Suarez, Ting Yuan, Haifeng Zhang, Hui Yang, Sufia Khatun and Daniel Akins, Journal of the Electrochemical Society (2012).
  • "A Facile Method to Synthesis Hollow Silica Ellipsoids and their Derivatives," Henan Zhang and Daniel L. Akins, MRS Proceedings, 2012, 1386.
  • "Formation of Graphene Oxide Nanocomposites from Carbon Dioxide Using Ammonia Borane," Junshe Zhang, Yu Zhao, Xudong Guan, Ruth E. Stark, Daniel L. Akins and Jae W. Lee, J. Phys. Chem. C, 116, 2639-2622 (2012);
  • "Synthesis of hollow ellipsoidal silica nanostructures using a wet-chemical etching approach," Henan Zhang, Yi Zhou, Yueru Li, Teresa J. Bandosz and Daniel L. Akins, J. Colloid Interface Sci. 375, 106–111 (2012); doi:10.1016/j.jcis.2012.02.046.
  • "An Efficient reduction route for Pd-Pt nanoparticles anchored on graphene nanosheets as durable oxygen reduction electrocatalysts," Wei He, Huijun Jiang, Yi Zhou, Xinzhong Sue, Zhiqing Zou, Xiaogang Zhang, Daniel L. Akins and Hui Yang, Carbon, 50, 265-274 (2012).
  • "Template-free synthesis of silica ellipsoids," Henan Zhang, Teresa J. Bandosz and Daniel L. Akins, Chem. Commun., 47, 7791–7793 (2011).
  • "Template-Free Synthesis of Ellipsoidal Silica Nanoparticles," Henan Zhang, Daniel L. Akins, Journal of Colloid and Interface Science. Accepted 2011 MRS Fall Meeting proceedings.
  • "Rapid Release of 1.5 Equivalents of Hydrogen from CO2-Treated Ammonia Borane," Ran Xiong, Junshe Zhang, Yu Zhao, Daniel L. Akins, and Jae W. Lee, International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, 37:4, 3344-3349 (2011).
  • "Calorimetric and Microscopic Studies on the Noncatalytic Hydrothermolysis of Ammonia Borane," Junshe Zhang, Yu Zhao, Daniel L. Akins and Jae W. Lee, Industrial Engineering Chemistry Research, 50:18, 10407-10413 (2011). DOI: 10.1021/ie200878u.
  • "Effect of Composition on Dehydrogenation of Mesoporous Silica/Ammonia Borane Nanocomposites," Yu Zhao, Junshe Zhang, Daniel L. Akins and Jae W. Lee, Industrial Engineering Chemistry Research, 50:17, 10024-10028 (2011). DOI: 10.1021/ie200330x.
  • "Origin of Performance Degradation of Palladium-Based Direct Formic Acid Fuel Cells," Mingjun Ren, Yongyin Kang, Wei He, Zhiqing Zou, Xinzhong Xue, Daniel L. Akins, Hui Yang and Songlin Feng. Applied Catalysis B: Environmental 104, 49–53 (2011).


Email: Dr. Daniel L. Akins

Professor of Chemistry

Director of Center for Analysis of Structures and Interfaces

The Department of Chemistry at The City College

and Ph.D. Program in Chemistry at Graduate Center

of The City University of New York