Brian Knettle, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Chemistry



Brian Knettle is an Associate Professor of Chemistry whose teaching responsibilities revolve around the basic introduction to chemical knowledge (CHEM 101, 120, 121) as well as more in-depth investigation of inorganic theory (CHEM 230). Arriving at Hiram College after experiences at the University of Virginia’s College at Wise, Texas Tech University, and the University of Toledo has led him to a greater appreciation of the importance of the liberal arts experience and its potential impact on a person’s future. He has an array of hobbies and is constantly attempting to make new items, enjoys games of skill and strategy, and walks through life with his wife, two children, one dog, and his apparently indestructible cat.


  • Ph.D – Texas Tech University, 9/01-12/03, Chemistry (Inorganic)
  • M.S. – University of Toledo, 9/99-8/01, Chemistry
  • B.S. – University of Toledo, 9/93-12/98, Chemistry

Research Interests

Brian has long-term aspirations of resuming his formal training in divalent lanthanide reducing agents and their ability to mediate organic transformations. In the meantime, he currently involves his students in attempts to understand the effects of subtle changes in structures with respect to the reactivity of carbonyl-containing molecules during their transformations into imine groups.

Selected Publications

  • Prasad, E.; Knettle, B.W.; Flowers, R.A. “Photoinduced Electron Transfer Reactions by SmI2 in THF: Luminescence Quenching Studies and Mechanistic Investigations” Chemistry – A European Journal, 2005, 11 (10), 3105.
  • Prasad, E.; Knettle, B.W.; Flowers, R.A. “The Role of Ligand Displacement in Sm(II)-HMPA Based Reductions” Journal of the American Chemical Society, 2004, 126(22), 6891.
  • Kim, M.; Knettle, B.W.; Dahlén, A.; Hilmersson, G.; Flowers, R.A. “Reduction and reductive coupling of imines by Sm(II)-based reagents” Tetrahedron, 2003, 59 (52), 10397.
  • Dahlén, A.; Hilmersson, G.; Knettle, B.W.; Flowers, R.A. “Rapid SmI2-mediated reductions of alkyl halides and electrochemical properties of SmI2/H2O/amine” Journal of Organic Chemistry 2003, 68 (12), 4870.
  • Knettle, B.W.; Flowers, R.A. “Influence of HMPA on reducing power and reactivity of SmBr2” Organic Letters 2001, 3 (15), 2321.

Fun Facts

  • Brian has routinely surprised people by admitting that he has never actually watched “Breaking Bad”, that he makes chainmaille (but doesn’t cosplay or LARP), and that he is unable to “play a game for fun”.
  • His favorite course to teach has been a forensic science course years ago but the most illuminating was probably the very first class he taught as a graduate student.