Bringing World-class Research to UNT Chemistry

Bringing World-class Research to UNT Chemistry

UNT Diving Eagle
October 12, 2020


As the new Welch Chair of UNT Chemistry, Shengqian Ma will be leading an internationally recognized chemistry research program focusing on functional nanoporous materials. This position plays an important leadership role during a planned growth phase in the UNT Chemistry Department, and Ma is excited to establish a world-class research program here.

The UNT Welch Chair in Chemistry was established nearly twenty years ago with a $2M endowment built on gifts from the Welch Foundation and private donors. It was a major event in transforming the UNT Chemistry Department into a research powerhouse at both UNT and in the state of Texas. Ma is only the second researcher to hold this prestigious endowed position.

"We are honored and excited to have a scientist and scholar of Dr. Ma's magnitude joining us as our new Welch Chair," says Slaughter, Chair of the UNT Chemistry Department. "During his 10-year independent career at the University of South Florida prior to joining UNT, Dr. Ma established himself as a world-renowned expert in the chemistry of porous materials. Some of his discoveries have potential applications in environmental remediation, energy production and storage and drug delivery, among other important technologies."

"We are a synthetic materials chemistry lab," Ma says. "Our research focuses on the development of functional nanoporous materials including metal-organic frameworks, covalent organic frameworks, and porous organic polymers for energy, biological and environmental-related applications."

At the UNT College of Science, Ma has access to our university's world-class high-performance computing infrastructure and a suite of staffed and well-maintained major instrumentation, including NMR, single-crystal XRD and mass spectrometry.

"We are expecting Dr. Ma will help lead us to even greater heights as we seek to solidify our national reputation as an outstanding department for chemistry research," Slaughter says.

As one of the nations top-tier research universities, UNT's official Carnegie classification is R1 Doctoral University with the highest research activity.

More information about the Ma Research Group is available at To learn more about the UNT Chemistry Department, please visit or follow the department for news and updates on Twitter at @UNTChemistry.