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By Evan Dresser LEWISBURG, Pa. – An influx of grants for chemistry research at Bucknell will enhance equipment and support more than 20 undergraduate research positions.
The nearly $1 million in grants includes a new pulsed carbon dioxide laser and an atomic force microscope. Along with the recent addition of a nuclear magnetic resonance facility, the acquisitions offer powerful new capabilities.
“Not only is this enabling our faculty to conduct important research, it’s also providing research-grade instruments that are available for undergraduate use,” said Timothy Strein, professor of chemistry and chemistry department chair.
Funding and topics The grants come from NASA, the National Science Foundation (NSF), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the American Chemical Society's Petroleum Research Fund (PRF).
They support various individual research projects that involve a variety of areas, including chemical analysis methods on the nanoliter scale, the study of clay minerals, structural studies on bile salt micelles, investigations of chemical reactions within the Earth’s atmosphere, transfers of vibrational energy, and the development of new methods for producing polymers and plastics.
They support various individual research projects involving development of chemical analysis methods on the nanoliter scale, study of clay minerals, structural studies on bile salt micelles, investigating chemical reactions within the Earth’s atmosphere, vibrational energy transfer, and the development of new methods for the production of polymers and plastics.
“Bioanalytical CE: Mixing, Reacting, Separating, Stacking” $150,000 (plus overhead) from NIH Timothy Strein, professor of chemistry • Manipulation of nanoliter volumes of solutions in narrow capillaries to develop efficient low volume analysis methods for studies in clinical and food chemistry.
“Acquisition of an Atomic Force Microscope to Enhance Interdisciplinary Materials Research” $180,673 from NSF Molly McGuire, assistant professor of chemistry Erin Jablonski, assistant professor of chemical engineering Timothy Raymond, assistant professor of chemical engineering • A powerful microscope that allows imaging at lengths approaching a single molecule. Plans include studying environmental processes that involve clay minerals.
“Examining Hydrodynamic and Solubilization Properties of Micelles Formed by Chiral Amphiphiles with NMR” $55,000 from PRF David Rovnyak, assistant professor of chemistry Timothy Strein, professor of chemistry • Involves using the new nuclear magnetic resonance facility to perfect the process of separating highly similar molecules through new molecular level understanding of the interactions between molecules in solution.
“Quenching of Vibrationally-Excited Ozone by Atomic Oxygen” $149,190 (plus overhead) from NSF Karen Castle, assistant professor of chemistry • Characterizing ozone-atomic oxygen interactions using a newly acquired pulsed carbon dioxide laser in order to help interpret satellite data used to track long term variations in climate.
“Temperature-Dependent CO2-O Vibrational Energy Transfer” $180,000 (plus overhead) from NASA James Dodd, staff scientist at the Air Force Research Laboratory/Space Vehicles Directorate Karen Castle, assistant professor of chemistry • Studying the dominant cooling mechanism in Earth's upper atmosphere over the 150-500 K temperature range.
“Synthesis of Amine-Terminated Polymers Using Lewis Acid-Induced N-methyleneamines as Cationic Initiators” $100,000 (plus overhead) from NSF Eric Tillman, assistant professor of chemistry • Developing novel reaction systems that allow for precise control over the polymerization process and the structure of the polymers formed.
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