Peter N. Njoki, Ph.D.

Peter N. Njoki

B.Ed. Chemistry and Mathematics, Kenyatta University (Nairobi, Kenya)
Ph.D. Analytical Chemistry, State University of New York (SUNY) at Binghamton, New York
Postdoctoral Research Associate, Research Foundation of SUNY, Binghamton, New York
Postdoctoral Fellow, Syracuse University

Phone: (757) 727-5833

Dr. Peter N. Njoki is an assistant professor of chemistry and forensic chemistry at Hampton University. He received his Ph.D. in chemistry (with concentration in nanoscience) from Binghamton University-State University of New York. Dr. Njoki has authored or co-authored over 30 publications in peer-reviewed journals focusing on synthesis, characterization, and applications of nanomaterials. 

Research Interests

Nanoscience, Materials chemistry, Catalysis, Renewable Energy, Electrochemistry and Nano-Forensic Chemistry

The main focus of our research interests is in nanoscience, materials chemistry, catalysis, renewable energy, electrochemistry and application of nanotechnology in forensic chemistry. We synthesize and characterize monometallic and alloyed nanoparticles based on gold, silver, and platinum. These nanoparticles have applications in catalysis, fuel cells, drug delivery, and forensic detections. In one of our research projects, we are exploring the design, manipulation, synthesis, and characterization of aqueous gold-based nanoparticles and their applications in fuel cell based breathalyzers, detection of latent finger prints, and trace evidence analysis. In another project we are studying the toxicity of silver nanoparticles resulting from the vast applications of these particles in many consumers' products.

Professional Appointments

  • Assistant Professor, Hampton University, Department of Chemistry, 2014 – present
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Syracuse University, Chemistry Department, 2010 – 2012
  • Postdoctoral Research Associate, Research Foundation of SUNY, 2007 – 2010
  • Research/Teaching assistant, Binghamton University, Chemistry Department, 2003 – 2007

Teaching/Research Experiences

  • Assistant Professor: 2014 – present, Department of Chemistry, Hampton University
  • Graduate/Teaching Assistant: 2003 – 2007, Chemistry Department, Binghamton University (SUNY), Binghamton, NY.

Professional Societies

  • Member, American Chemical Society (2003 – present)
  • Member, Materials Research Society (2003 – present)
  • Member, American Association for the Advancement of Science (2009 – 2014)
  • Member, American Chemical Society Binghamton local section (2003 – 2010)
  • Member, American Chemical Society Syracuse local section (2010 – 2014)
  • Member, American Chemical Society Hampton roads local section (2014 – present)
  • Member, Virginia Academy of Science (2016 – present)

Honors and Awards

  • NanoHU Faculty Research Award, 2015.
  • P & G Research and Technical Careers in Industry Conference for outstanding African American, Hispanic, Native American and other doctoral and postdoctoral scientists, Selected Participant and Travel Award (Procter & Gamble, Cincinnati, OH, 2009).


  • Zhong, C. J.; Luo, J.; Kariuki, N. N.; Wang, L.; Njoki, P. N.; Mott, D. “Method of Synthesizing and Processing Carbon-supported, Gold and Gold-based Multimetallic Nanoparticles for Use as Catalysts” US Patent No. 7687428 (2010).
  • Zhong, C. J.; Njoki, P. N.; Luo, J. “Controlled Synthesis of Highly Monodispersed Gold Nanoparticles” US Patent No. 7524354 (2009).

Selected Publications

  1. Njoki, P. N.; Wu, W.; Lutz, P.; Maye, M. M., “Growth Characteristics and Optical Properties of Core/Alloy Nanoparticles Fabricated via the Layer-by-Layer Hydrothermal Route” Chem. Mater., 2013, 25, 3105 – 3113.DOI: 10.1021/cm401286w
  2. Njoki, P. N.; Lutz, P. S.; Wu, W.; Solomon, L.; Maye, M. M. “Exploiting Core/Shell and Core/Alloy Interfaces for Asymmetric Growth of Nanoparticles” Chem. Commun., 2012, 48, 10449 – 10451. DOI: 10.1039/C2CC34184K
  3. Njoki, P. N.; Solomon, L. V.; Wu, W.; Alam, R.; Maye, M. M. “Attenuating Surface Plasmon Resonance via Core/Alloy Architectures” Chem. Commun., 2011, 47, 10079 – 10081. DOI: 10.1039/C1CC12596F
  4. Wu, W.; Njoki, P. N.; Han, H.; Zhao, H.; Schiff, E. A., Lutz, P. S.; Solomon, L.; Matthews, S.; Maye, M. M. “Processing Core/Alloy/Shell Nanoparticles: Tunable Optical Properties and Evidence for Self-Limiting Alloy Growth” J. Phys. Chem. C, 2011, 115, 9933 – 9942. DOI: 10.1021/jp201151m
  5. Njoki, P. N.; Wu, W.; Zhao, H.; Hutter, L.; Schiff, E. A.; Maye, M. M. “Layer-by-layer Processing and Optical Properties of Core/Alloy Nanostructures” J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2011, 133, 5224 – 5227. DOI: 10.1021/ja200650w
  6. Njoki, P. N.; Luo, J.; Kamundi, M. M.; Lim, S. I-Im.; Zhong, C. J. “Aggregative Growth in the Size-Controlled Growth of Monodispersed Gold Nanoparticles” Langmuir, 2010, 26, 13622 – 13629. DOI: 10.1021/la1019058
  7. Zhong, C. J.; Luo, J.; Njoki, P. N.; Mott, D.; Wanjala, B. N.; Loukrakpam, R.; Lim, S. I-Im; Wang, L.; Fang, B.; Xu, Z. “Fuel Cell Technology: Nano-engineered Multimetallic Catalysts” Energy & Environ. Sci., 2008, 1, 454 – 466. DOI: 10.1039/B810734N
  8. Lim, S. I-Im; Mott, D.; Ip, W.; Njoki, P. N.; Pan, Y.; Zhou, S.; Zhong, C. J. “Interparticle Interactions in Glutathione Mediated Assembly of Gold Nanoparticles” Langmuir, 2008, 24, 8857 – 8863. DOI: 10.1021/la800970p
  9. Luo. J.; Wang, L.Y.; Mott, D.; Njoki, P. N.; Lin, Y.; He, T.; Xu, Z.; Wanjala, B.; Lim, S. I-Im.; Zhong, C. J. “Core@Shell Nanoparticles as Electrocatalysts for Fuel Cell Reactions” Adv. Mater., 2008, 20, 4342 – 4347.DOI: 10.1002/adma.200703009
  10. Lim, S. I-Im; Njoki, P. N.; Park, H. Y.; Wang, X.; Wang, L.; Mott, D.; Zhong, C. J. “Gold and Magnetic Oxide/Gold Core/Shell Nanoparticles as Bio-functional Nanoprobes” Nanotechnology, 2008, 19, 305102 (11pp). DOI:10.1088/0957-4484/19/30/305102
  11. Njoki, P. N.; Lim, S. I-Im; Park, H. Y.; Khan, B.; Mishra, S.; Sujakumar, R.; Luo, J.; Zhong, C. J. “Size Correlation of Optical and Spectroscopic Properties for Gold Nanoparticles” J. Phys. Chem. C, 2007, 111, 14664 – 14669. DOI: 10.1021/jp074902z

Book Chapters

  1. Luo, J.; Fang, B.; Wanjala, B. N.; Njoki, P. N.; Loukrakpam, R.; Yin, J.; Mott, D.; Lim, S.; Zhong, C. J. “Nanoparticles for Fuel Cell Applications” Chapter 7 in Inorganic Nanoparticles: Synthesis, Applications, and Perspectives, Claudia Altavilla Ed., CRC Press, Taylor and Francis, 2010.
  2. Zhong, C. J.; Luo, J.; He, T.; Mott, D.; Njoki, P. N.; Wang, L. “Oxygen Reduction on Pt Alloys: Nanotechnology in Electrocatalysis” Catalysts for Oxygen Electroreduction – Recent Developments and New Directions, Ed. T. He, Chapter 5, 91 – 129, 2009.

Selected Presentations


“Synthesis of Silver Nanoparticles” NanoHU Pioneers – Poster Presentations, Hampton, VA, July 23, 2015. Nwokogu, P. and Njoki, P. N.


“Synthesis of Size Controlled Gold Nanoparticles” NanoHU Pioneers – Poster Presentations, Hampton, VA, July 23, 2015. Werling, R. and Njoki, P. N.


“Microwave Synthesis of Gold-based Nanoparticles for Bioanalytical and Catalytic Applications” (Poster) at Hampton University School of Science 20th Annual Research Symposium, Hampton, VA, April 9 – 10, 2015. Njoki, P. N.


“Synthesis and Characterization of Nanomaterials made from Various Transition Metals” (Invited Talk) NanoHU Seminar Series, Hampton, VA, March 25, 2015. Njoki, P. N.


“Synthesis and Optical Properties of Core/Alloy Nanoparticles” Abstracts of Papers, 244th ACS National Meeting, Philadelphia, PA, August 19 – 23. Maye, M. M.; Njoki, P. N.; Wu, W., Lutz, P.


“Fine-tuning Surface Plasmon Resonance using Core/Alloy and Core/Alloy/Shell Architectures” Abstracts of Papers, 242nd ACS National Meeting, Denver, CO, August 28 – September 1. Maye, M. M.; Njoki, P. N.; Wu, W.; Solomon, L.; Lutz, P., Alam, R.


“Exploring Nanoparticle Phase Behavior using Core/Alloy/Shell and Core/Alloy Models” 85th Colloid and Surface Science Symposium, Montreal, QC, Canada, June 19 – 22. Maye, M. M.; Njoki, P. N., Wu, W.


“Rotating Disk Electrode Study of the Electrocatalytic Activity and Stability of Bimetallic/Trimetallic Nanoparticle Catalysts for Oxygen Reduction Reaction” MRS Fall Meeting, Boston, MA, November 30 – December 4. Njoki, P. N.; Wanjala, B.; Loukrakpam, R.; Fang, B.; Luo, J., Zhong, C. J.


“Green Synthesis of Gold Nanoparticles with Controllable Sizes and Surface Properties as Bio-nanoprobes” MRS Fall Meeting, Boston, MA, United States, November 30 – December 4. Njoki, P. N.; Kamundi, M.; Lim, S. I-Im., Zhong, C. J.


“Metal Nanoparticles for Spectroscopic Probes and Fuel Cell Catalysts” 19th Research & Technical Careers in Industry Conference, Cincinnati, OH, June 6 – 9, 2009. Njoki, P. N. and Zhong, C. J.


“Characterization of Alloy Nanoparticle Catalysts in Fuel Cells” 236th ACS National Meeting, Philadelphia, PA, August 17 – 21. Njoki P. N.; Luo, J.; Wanjala, B. N.; Lim, S. I-Im; Loukrakpam, R.; Alzoubi, K.; Shi, X.; Wang, L.; Wang, N.; Lu, S., Zhong, C. J.


“Biofunctionalized Metal Nanoparticles and Assemblies” Abstracts of Papers, 236th ACS National Meeting, Philadelphia, PA, August 17 – 21. Lim, S. I-Im.; Njoki, P. N.; Mott, D.; Kamundi, M.; Loukrakpam, R., Zhong, C. J.

Workshops Attended

  • Forensic Science Chemistry Collaborations, Workshops & Communities of Scholars (cCWCS), Williams College Williamstown, MA June 21 – 26, 2015.
  • Quality Education for Minorities (QEM) Network: NSF Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program Proposal Workshop, Baltimore, MD March 6 – 7, 2015.