Sewanee: The University of the South

Deon T. Miles

Associate Professor of Chemistry

A.B., Wabash College; Ph.D., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Deon T. Miles

Curriculum Vitae

Deon T. Miles graduated from Wabash College in 1997 with a major in Chemistry and earned his doctoral degree in Analytical Chemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2002. Since 2002, he has been a faculty member in the Department of Chemistry at Sewanee, where he is currently a tenured Associate Professor. He teaches the following courses at the University: Instrumental Analysis, General Chemistry, Advanced Topics in Analytical Chemistry, and the Science of Food and Cooking.

Teaching Philosophy

Daily Schedule

Research Information

Miles Bacc 2008 picture The research interests of Professor Miles focuses on the study of monolayer-protected semiconducting and metallic nanoparticles as a precursor to incorporating them into nanoscale sensing devices. The synthesis of these nanoparticles are done using simple protocols under ambient conditions.  Several analytical techniques are used in his research laboratory to characterize these nanoparticles, including:

  • Ultraviolet-visible (UV-vis) Spectroscopy
  • Photoluminescence (PL) Spectroscopy
  • Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) Spectroscopy
  • Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) Spectroscopy
  • High-Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC)
  • Mass Spectrometry (MS)
  • Cyclic Voltammetry (CV) and Differential Pulse Voltammetry (DPV)

The key factors that determine if the nanoparticles can be used in potential sensing devices include: (1) desired solubility (H2O or organic solvents), (2) stability under true operating conditions (e.g., temperature, pH), (3) uniform size (monodispersity), and (4) integration into modules of classical instrumentation.

The Miles research group is informally called "MINI", which is an acronym that stands for the Miles Institute of Nanomaterials Investigation.

MINI logo


MINI Group Pictures


Current MINIs at Scholarship Sewanee 2014

MINI Group Members:

  • Ena V. S. R. Aguilar (Class of 2017)
  • Sonia C. Francone (Class of 2017)
  • William L. F. Wright (Class of 2016)
  • Luis R. Tinoco (Class of 2015) 
  • Ava E. Conner (Class of 2015)
  • Nate D. Barnett (Class of 2015)
  • Adrienne C. Borchardt (B.S. 2012; graduate student, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center)
  • Elizabeth M. Henry (B.S. 2012; graduate student, Georgia Institute of Technology) 
  • Laura A. Logan (B.S. 2011; research analyst, Vanderbilt University Medical Center)
  • Joseph A. Giesen (B.S. 2010; graduate student, Tulane University)
  • April D. (Dale) Looper (B.S. 2010; graduate student, Christian Brothers University)
  • Molly C. Carpenter (B.S. 2009; graduate student, Dartmouth College)
  • Jack R. Renehan (B.S. 2009; medical student, University of Virginia)
  • Corwin A. Miller (B.S. 2008; Ph.D. 2013, Rice University)
  • James W. H. Sonne (B.A. 2007; Ph.D. 2013, University of Kentucky)
  • Tracian A. Meikle (B.S. 2007; M.Sc. [sociology] 2011, University of the West Indies at Mona)
  • Stephanie A. (Owens) Morris (B.S. 2007; Ph.D. 2013, Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
  • Heather L. (Turbeville) Sharp (B.S. 2007, Univ. of Tennessee; M.S. 2011 [medicine], Trevecca Nazarene Univ.)
  • Melissa A. (Ensor) Freiderich (B.S. 2006; Ph.D. 2011, Washington State University)
  • K. Grace Kennedy (B.S. 2006; Ph.D. [math] 2013, University of California, Santa Barbara)
  • Charles A. Odonkor (B.S. 2006; M.D. 2013, Yale University)
  • Cynthia G. Gray (B.S. 2005; M.S. [biology] 2008, Middle Tennessee State University)
  • Kathryn M. (Panzner) Leininger (B.S. 2004; M.D. 2008, The Ohio State University)


Recent Publications

  1. Miles, D. T. “Run-D.M.C.: A mnemonic aid for explaining mass transfer in electrochemical systemsJ. Chem. Educ. 2013, 90, 1649-1653.
  2. JCE Mar 2009 coverOwens, S. A.; Carpenter, M. C.; Sonne, J. W. H.; Miller, C. A.; Renehan, J. R.; Odonkor, C. A.; Henry, E. M.; Miles, D. T. “Reversed-phase HPLC separation of water-soluble, monolayer-protected quantum dots” J. Phys. Chem. C. 2011, 115, 18952-18957.
  3. Miles, D. T.; Bachman, J. K. “The science of food and cooking: a non-science majors courseJ. Chem. Educ. 2009, 86, 311-315.
  4. Odonkor, C. A.; Owens, S. A.; Turbeville, H. L.; Gray, C. G.; Miles, D. T. “Effects of temperature reduction on monolayer-protected gold nanocluster capacitance” J. Electroanal. Chem. 2007, 603, 35-43.
  5. Kennedy, K. G.; Miles, D. T. “Electrochemistry of ferrocene-modified monolayer-protected nanoclusters at reduced temperaturesJ. Under. Chem. Res. 2004, 3, 145-150. [PDF]


Personal Interests



My Family

My Faith





Areas of Expertise

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Nanoscience and Nanotechnology
Sewanee: The University of the South