Stoddart Mechanostereochemistry Group





Stoddart Mechanostereochemistry Group



Severin T. Schneebeli

Postdoctoral Fellow

Hometown: Zurich, Switzerland

Joined group: 2011

Left group: 2014


  • Ph.D. (Chemistry, with distinction), 2011, Columbia University
    Advisors: Prof. Ronald Breslow and Prof. Richard Friesner
    Selected Honors: Hammet Award (2011), Guthikonda Fellowship (2010), Upjohn Fellowship (2007)

  • M.Phil. (Chemistry), 2010, Columbia University
  • M.A. (Chemistry), 2007, Columbia University
  • B.S. (Chemistry), 2006, University of Zurich


  • Schneebeli, S. T.; Frasconi, M.; Liu, Z.; Wu, Y.; Gardner, D. M.; Strutt, N. L.; Cheng, C.; Carmieli, R.; Wasielewski, M. R.; Stoddart, J. F. “Electron Sharing and Anion-π Recognition in Molecular Triangular Prisms.” Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2013 , 52, 13100—13104, Very Important Paper, Back Cover.

  • Hartlieb, K. J.; Blackburn, A. K.; Schneebeli, S. T.; Forgan, R. S.; Sarjeant, A. A.; Stern, C. L.; Cao, D.; Stoddart, J. F. "Topological Isomerism in a Chiral Handcuff Catenane." Chem. Sci. 2014, 5, 90—100,

  • Strutt, N. L.; Schneebeli, S. T.; Stoddart, J. F. "Stereochemical Inversion in Difunctionalized Pillar[5]arenes." Supramol. Chem. 2013, 25, 596—608, Special Issue Honouring Professor Rocco Ungaro.

  • Schneebeli, S. T.; Cheng, C.; Hartlieb, K. J.; Strutt, N. L.; Sarjeant, A. A.; Stern, C. L.; Stoddart, J. F. "Asararenes — A Family of Large Aromatic Macrocycles" Chem. Eur. J. 2013, 19, 3860—3868, Very Important Paper, Cover Art, Spotlight in Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2013, 52, 3302—3305, Highlighted in Chemistry Views, 20 February 2013.

  • Vazquez, H.; Skouta, R.; Schneebeli, S. T.; Kamenetska, M.; Breslow, R.; Venkataraman, L.; Hybertsen, M. S. "Probing the Conductance Superposition Law in Single-molecule Circuits with Parallel Paths." Nature Nanotech. 2012, 7, 663—667.

  • Basuray, A. N.; de Rouville, H. P. J..; Hartlieb, K. J.; Kikuchi, T.; Strutt, N. L.; Bruns, C. J.; Ambrogio, M. W.; Avestro, A. J.; Schneebeli, S. T.; Fahrenbach, A. C.; Stoddart, J. F. "The Chameleonic Nature of Diazaperopyrenium Recognition Processes." Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2012, 51, 11872—11877.

  • Tagliazucchi, M.; Amin, V. A..; Schneebeli, S. T.; Stoddart, J. F.; Weiss, E. A. "High-Contrast Photopatterning of Photoluminescence within Quantum Dot Films through Degradation of a Charge-Transfer Quencher." Adv. Mater. 2012, 24, 3617—3621, Cover Art.

  • Heckel, J. C.; Weisman, A. L.; Schneebeli, S. T.; Hall, M. L.; Sherry, L. J.; Stranahan, S. M.; Dubay, K. H.; Friesner, R. A.; Willets, K. A. "Polarized Raman Spectroscopy of Oligothiophene Crystals To Determine Unit Cell Orientation" J. Phys. Chem. A 2012, 116, 6804—6816.

  • Chen, W.; Widawsky, J. R.; Vázquez, H.; Schneebeli, S. T.; Hybertsen, M. S.; Breslow, R.; Venkataraman, L. "Highly Conducting π-Conjugated Molecular Junctions Covalently Bonded to Gold Electrodes" J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2011, 133, 17160—17163.

  • Breslow, R.; Schneebeli, S. T. “Structure property relationships in molecular wires” Tetrahedron 2011, 67, 10171—10178 .

  • Li, J.; Schneebeli, S. T.; Bylund, J.; Farid, R.; Friesner, R. A. “IDSite: An accurate approach to predict P450-mediated drug metabolism" J. Chem. Theory Comput. 2011, 7, 3829—3845.

  • Cheng, Z.; Skouta, R.; Vazquez, H.; Widawsky, J. R.; Schneebeli, S. T.; Chen, W.; Hybertsen, M. S.; Breslow, R.; Venkataraman, L., “In situ Formation of Highly Conducting Au-C Contacts for Single Molecule Junctions” Nature Nanotech. 2011, 6, 353—357.

  • Schneebeli, S. T.; Kamenetska, M.; Cheng, Z.; Skouta, R.; Friesner, R. A.; Venkataraman, L.; Breslow., R “Single molecule conductance through multiple π-π stacked benzene rings determined with direct electrode to benzene ring connections.” J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2011, 133, 2136—2139, Cover Art, highlighted in Nature Materials, March 2011.

  • Schneebeli, S. T.; Bochevarov, A.; Friesner, R. A. “Parameterization of a B3LYP specific correction for dispersion interactions on a gigantic dataset of CCSD(T) quality non-covalent interaction energies.” J. Chem. Theory Comput., 2011, 7, 658—668.

  • Schneebeli, S. T.; Kamenetska, M.; Foss, F. W.; Vazquez, H.; Skouta, R.; Hybertsen, M. S.; Venkataraman, L.; Breslow, R. “The electrical properties of Biphenylenes.” Org. Lett. 2010, 12, 4114—4117.

  • Schneebeli, S. T.; Hall, M. L.; Breslow, R.; Friesner, R. A. “Quantitative DFT Modeling of the Enantiomeric Excess for Dioxirane-Catalyzed Epoxidations.” J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2009, 131, 3965—3973.


I was born and grew up in Zurich, Switzerland, where I also went to high school and college. My interest in chemistry developed during high school, when I started to become fascinated by the ability of chemists to make gigantic amounts (mols) of well-defined, functional molecules. As a result I set up a simple lab at home (with an expensive balance that was donated to me by my high school) and tried to carry out artificial photosynthesis. Soon I realized, however, that doing real chemical experiments at home was too expensive for my high school budget and so I decided to study chemistry in college, where I could use the University’s equipment and chemicals. After three years at the University of Zurich, I then felt inspired to go abroad to Columbia University in New York for graduate school as it seemed to be the cheapest way to live right in the heart of the “Big Apple”.
As a joint graduate student with Prof. Ronald Breslow and Prof. Richard Friesner at Columbia University I then worked on multiple projects trying to connect experimental and theoretical chemistry. On one end, I developed computational tools to predict the selectivity of reactions and on the other end I designed and synthesized novel molecular wires in collaboration with the Venkataraman research group. Fascinated by the possibility that one day tiny “molecular robots” might help us to solve important problems chemically, I then joined the Stoddart Mechanostereochemistry research group as an International Institute for Nanotechnology (IIN) postdoctoral fellow, with my goal being to synthesize and computationally design novel molecular motors. Besides Chemistry, my main passion is to play Beethoven’s sonatas for violin and piano on my dark red violin.


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