Mónica Barra’s research focuses on fundamental studies of organic reaction mechanisms and of supramolecular systems, with emphasis on structure-reactivity correlations and molecular recognition studies.
- Reaction mechanisms
- Time-resolved laser-flash photolysis
- Host-guest organic chemistry
Back in the days as a research-active Faculty member, Mónica Barra's research projects focused on understanding fundamental thermodynamic and kinetic properties of organic systems of significance to the general field of materials science and of various potential uses, ranging from pharmaceutical applications and catalysis to sensors and microelectronics.
Investigations were based primarily on the application of UV-visible absorption spectroscopy, fluorescence spectroscopy, and time-resolved laser-flash photolysis techniques. While the emphasis of our projects had been on thermodynamic and kinetic properties, studies also involved organic synthesis, and thus the application of chromatographic techniques, mass spectrometry as well as NMR and IR spectroscopy.
Mónica Barra's recent teaching portfolio at the University of Waterloo include:
- CHEM 123: Chemical Reactions, Equilibria and Kinetics
- CHEM 264: Organic Chemistry 1
- CHEM 265: Organic Chemistry 2
- CHEM 400: Physical Organic Chemistry
Other courses taught at the University of Waterloo:
- CHEM 266: Basic Organic Chemistry 1
- CHEM 267: Basic Organic Chemistry 2
- CHEM 360: Organic Chemistry 3
- CHEM 362: Mechanistic Organic Chemistry (no longer offered)
- CHEM 368: Synthetic Organic Chemistry (no longer offered)
- CHEM 460: Organic Photochemistry
- CHEM 769: Physical Organic Chemistry
Highlighted publications include
Fu, J.; Barra, M. 2012, A computational study of the thermal cis-to-trans isomerization of N-(phenylazo)-substituted nitrogen heterocycles. Trends Org. Chem. 16, 1-8.
- Barra, M.; Van Veller, B.; Verberne, C., 2011, Absolute rate constants for 5-deazariboflavin triplet excited state in one-electron transfer processes. J Photochem. Photobiol. A: Chem. 225, 113-116.
- Tabone, R.; Barra, M., 2011, Thermal cis-to-trans isomerization of triazene dyes in doped polymer films. Dyes Pigm. 88, 180-186.
- Lim, H.; Zhang, H.; Barra, M., 2010, Spectrophotometric determination and linear free energy relationship analysis of acidity constants for 1,3-diphenyltriazenes. J. Chem. Eng., 55, 4917-4921.
- Xu, T.; Vaez-Zadeh Asadi, A.; Barra, M. 2010, Inhibition of acid-induced decomposition of diphenyltriazenes by complexation with cyclodextrins, Int. J. Chem. Kinet., 42, 567-74.
Awards and Distinctions
- 2017 Outstanding Performance Award, Faculty of Science, University of Waterloo.
- 2017 Distinguished Teacher Award (DTA), University of Waterloo.
- 2016 Excellence in Science Teaching Award (ESTA), Faculty of Science, University of Waterloo.
- 2012 Outstanding Performance Award, Faculty of Science, University of Waterloo.
- 2002 UG Chemistry Club "Chem. Prof. of the Year" Award, University of Waterloo.
- 1998 CNC/IUPAC Travel Award.
- 1993 Universidad Nacional de Córdoba Award for academic achievements
- 1989 Dr. Luis Gugliamelli Award, Argentinean Chemical Society.
- 1984 Universidad Nacional de Córdoba Undergraduate Award in Chemistry.
Professional Associations and Service
Associate Dean of Science, Undergraduate Studies, 2020-present
Associate Chair, Undergraduate & Co-op programs, Department of Chemistry, 2015-2020
- Chair, Undergraduate Affairs Committee, 2015-2020
- Undergraduate Operations Committee, 2011-2020
- Executive Committee, 2005-2007, 2011-2020
- Coordinator, Undergraduate mentoring program, 2012-2015
- Associate Chair, Department of Chemistry, 2011-2014
- Chair, Undergraduate Curriculum Committee, 2011-2014
- Graduate Officer, 2004-2009
- (GWC)2 Coordinating Committee, 2004-2009
- Graduate Advisory Committee, 2001-2009
1988 PhD Chemistry, Universidad Nacional de Córdoba
1984 BSc Chemistry, Universidad Nacional de Córdoba