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Dr. Graham Cooks

Dr. Graham Cooks

Mass spectrometry is of interest to this group, including fundamental phenomena, instrumentation and analytical applications. We study collisions of ions in the gas phase and at surfaces. The latter experiment aims at new methods of molecular surface analysis. In addition to reactive scattering, soft-landing of ions at surfaces has recently been discovered. Development of the Paul ion trap and the construction of miniature ion trap arrays is the focus of an instrumentation effort, the practical aims of which include in-situ on-line analysis. Ion motion simulations and laser tomography experiments facilitate the ion trap effort. We are currently employing ion/molecule reactions to recognize functional groups in polyfunctional compounds. Fundamental thermochemical properties such as proton affinities are being measured using the kinetic method, which was developed from our earlier interest in ion structure and fragmentation mechanism. Our interests also include ion mobilities and other physical properties of biological molecules, trace environmental analysis and atmospherically relevant ion/molecule reactions. Several new types of mass spectrometers have been constructed in Prof. Cooks' laboratory, including hybrid sector/quadrupole instruments and advanced ion trap instruments. Our group has made significant contributions to the development of desorption ionization and tandem mass spectrometry as methods of analysis of complex mixtures.


  • B.S., University of Natal (South Africa), 1961
  • M.S., University of Natal (South Africa), 1963
  • Ph.D., University of Natal (South Africa), 1965
  • Ph.D., Cambridge University, 1967


  • Elected Fellow, US National Academy of Sciences, 2015
  • Elected Fellow, National Academy of Inventors, 2014
  • Nobel Laureate Signature Award for Graduate Education in Chemistry (preceptor) ACS, 2014
  • Distinguished Professor, Indian Institute of Technology Madras, Chennai, India, 2013
  • Dreyfus Prize in the Chemical Sciences, 2013
  • F. A. Cotton Medal for Excellence In Chemical Research, ACS Texas A&M University Section and the chemistry department at Texas A&M, 2012
  • Morrill Award, 2012
  • Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 2010
  • Ralph N. Adams Award, the Pittsburgh Conference, 2010
  • Robert Boyle Medal in Analytical Chemistry, Royal Society of Chemistry, 2008
  • Award for a Distinguished Contribution in Mass Spectrometry, American Society for Mass Spectrometry, 2006
  • Alexander M. Cruickshank Lecturer, Gordon Research Conferences, 2005
  • Outstanding Commercialization Award for Faculty, 2005
  • Fisher Award (ACS Award for Analytical Chemistry) , 1997
  • Honorary Member, Ukrainian Chemical Society, 1995
  • Frank H. Field & Joe L. Franklin Award, (ACS Award for Mass Spectrometry), 1991
  • Herbert Newby McCoy Award, 1990
  • Honorary Member of Chinese Mass Spectrometry Society, 1987
  • Sigma Xi Faculty Research Award, 1986
  • Thomson Medal, International Mass Spectrometry Society, 1985
  • Analytical Division, Award in Chemical Instrumentation, 1984
  • Purdue Cancer Research Award, Indiana Lions Club, 1983
  • Fulbright Fellow, University of Warwick, 1981


List of publications