News

11/29/2018

By Carol Lee Spence

Organizers of Expanding Your Horizons are looking for University of Kentucky students who are interested in being workshop leaders for the 2019 conference. Expanding Your Horizons is a one-day conference on April 13 for middle school girls from across Kentucky. The purpose is to expose them to the STEM fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics by taking part in hands-on science workshops.

Women make up only 24 percent of the STEM workforce, and women hold a disproportionately low share of STEM undergraduate degrees.

“Many times, girls lack role models in those fields, so they may not realize the variety of career options and opportunities that exist for women,” said Ellen Crocker, a conference organizer and postdoctoral scholar in the UK Department of Forestry and Natural Resources.

11/27/2018

Organizers of Expanding Your Horizons are looking for University of Kentucky students who are interested in being workshop leaders for the 2019 conference. Expanding Your Horizons is a one-day conference on April 20, 2019, for middle school girls from across Kentucky. The purpose is to expose them to the STEM fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics by taking part in hands-on science workshops.

Women make up only 24 percent of the STEM workforce, and women hold a disproportionately low share of STEM undergraduate degrees.

“Many times, girls lack role models in those fields, so they may not realize the variety of career options and opportunities that exist for women,” said Ellen Crocker, a conference organizer and postdoctoral scholar in the UK Department of Forestry and Natural Resources.

11/19/2018

 

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 19, 2018) — The University of Kentucky has been named a partner on a $120 million, five-year second phase of the Joint Center for Energy Storage Research (JCESR), a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Innovation Hub focused on advancing battery science and technology.

Susan Odom, an associate professor of chemistry in the UK College of Arts and Sciences, is the principal investigator of the UK project. Odom and her team will study solvation of organic redox couples in complex environments, which are relevant to numerous energy storage technologies, including redox flow batteries — a technology of interest for large-scale grid storage.

Susan Odom, an associate professor

10/30/2018

By Torrie Johnson

The SEC (Southeastern Conference) Faculty Travel Program will support more than 100 SEC faculty members during the 2018-2019 academic year, the league office announced Monday. Nine University of Kentucky faculty members will participate. Established in 2012 by the SEC provosts, the program is designed to provide financial assistance from the SEC office that bolsters intra-SEC collaboration.

Identified participants will travel to other SEC universities to exchange ideas, develop grant proposals, conduct research and deliver lectures or performances. Areas of interest for this year’s class include music, engineering, anthropology, law, medicine and African-American studies, among others.

“The SEC Faculty Travel Program has been a tremendous resource for faculty at universities across the SEC,” said Ellen Reames, associate professor

10/26/2018

Dr. Russell J. Mumper has been named The University of Alabama’s vice president for research and economic development effective Jan. 1, 2019.

A vice provost from the University of Georgia who previously led four research centers or institutes co-founded five start-up companies, and received nearly $30 million in research grants and contracts, Mumper was selected following a national search.

“Dr. Mumper has demonstrated, at multiple institutions, that he has the broad-based knowledge and leadership skills necessary to significantly grow and sustain impactful research and economic development enterprises,” said UA President Stuart R. Bell. “I’m confident he is the ideal candidate to build on The University of Alabama’s unique strengths and enhance our research prominence.”

During his 27-year-career, Mumper, who has served as vice provost for academic affairs at UGA

10/26/2018

This article is part of a series of articles on “UK Chemistry Alumni: Where Are They Now?”  Here we feature former student Jonathan Barnes, PhD, who was a student at UK from 2000 to 2006, earning both BS and MS degrees in Chemistry.  Jonathan is now an Assistant Professor of Chemistry at Washington University in St. Louis (link to his website). Here Jonathan answers some questions about his time at UK and offers some advice to current and future chemistry students. 

 

Why did you choose UK for your undergraduate studies?

I chose UK to pursue my undergraduate studies because I thought I wanted to go to medical school and I knew UK’s med school was quite good.  I also grew up a huge Kentucky basketball fan, so I couldn’t wait to be a part of Big Blue Nation!

10/18/2018

Professors Anne-Frances Miller, Susan Odom, and Dong-Sheng Yang have received four new grants from the National Science Foundation (NSF).  These highly-competitive awards will fund research projects on electron transfer in flavoproteins (Miller), high potential redox couples (Odom), high concentration electrolytes (Odom), and spectroscopy of transient organometallic complexes (Yang).

Prof. Miller has a strong history of studying enzymatic redox catalysis, including the enzymes superoxide dismutase and nitroreductase. A major portion of Miller’s research involves enzyme engineering, focusing on rational design of flavoenzymes to modify their electronic characteristics. Miller explains, “Just as electrical wires carry power to every room in our houses, cells have dedicated proteins carrying a current of electrons from reactions

10/11/2018

Assistant Professor in Chemistry

Department of Chemistry

University of Kentucky

The Department of Chemistry at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, Kentucky is seeking candidates for a tenure-track assistant professor faculty position to start Fall 2019.  We encourage candidates with research in the broad areas of biological chemistry or materials chemistry, as well as the ability to take advantage of collaborative opportunities in the Department and on-campus.  A Ph.D. in Chemistry or a related field and postdoctoral experience (minimum of six months) is required.

Interested applicants should apply online at: http://ukjobs.uky.edu/postings/203079. Applicants must include the following: 1)

10/2/2018

This text was lifted from the following article: http://www.caer.uky.edu/caerblog/post/2018/10/01/Burt-Davis-Legendary-UK...

Burtron H. “Burt” Davis, a University of Kentucky Center for Applied Energy Research investigator and one of the most revered Fischer-Tropsch synthesis researchers in the world, passed away Friday, September 28 in Lexington, Kentucky. Service details can be found here: http://www.johnsonsfuneralhome.com/book-of-memories/3619109/Davis-Burtron/obituary.php

Born in Points, West Virginia, Dr. Davis graduated with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from West Virginia University in 1959 before earning a master’s

10/1/2018

By Dave Melanson

Yang Song, a doctoral student in the UK Department of Chemistry and researcher in at the UK Center for Applied Energy Research (CAER), helped lead the research effort on this project.

When Mark Crocker and the biofuels research team at the University of Kentucky Center for Applied Energy Research (CAER) began their work to convert lignin into biofuels and chemicals, some called it a biofuels gold rush.

Little did anyone know how important gold would become to the actual research.

Utilizing a gold-based catalytic system developed in CAER’s Biofuels and Environmental Catalysis Laboratory, the center’s researchers have discovered a method to turn lignin into valuable aromatic compounds. The

10/1/2018

Alexis Eugene's (Guzman group) NASA Graduate Fellowship on "Contribution of Model Aqueous Aerosol Formation from 2-Oxocarboxylic Acids to Earth’s Radiation Balance" was renewed. Congratulations, Alexis!

 

9/28/2018

By Gail Hairston

The University of Kentucky Alumni Association — with a committee chaired by UK Associate Provost for Faculty Advancement G.T. Lineberry — regularly honors outstanding UK faculty members with the UK Alumni Professorship Award.

This year, the honors went to Dibakar (D.B.) Bhattacharyya of the College of Engineering’s Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering; D. Allan Butterfield of the College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Chemistry; Seth DeBolt of the College of Agriculture, Food and Environment’s Department of Horticulture; Brent Seales of the College of Engineering’s Department of Computer Science; and Susan S. 

9/19/2018

Prof Mark Crocker's research on the catalytic oxidative depolymerisation of lignin, which could make cellulosic ethanol biofuels commercially viable, was featured in Chemistry World in an article titled "Gold Rush for Lignin Conversion."  Read the article here: https://www.chemistryworld.com/news/gold-rush-for-lignin-conversion/3009...

 

 

8/24/2018

Congratulations to Prof. Steve Yates (University of Kentucky), recipient of the 2018 W. Frank Kinard Distinguished Service Award. Steve will receive his award at the NUCL business meeting during the ACS Fall National Meeting in Boston.

Prof. Yates has been a member of the American Chemical Society since 1971. In the Division of Nuclear Chemistry and Technology (NUCL), he has played an active role division leadership. Prof. Yates held executive roles for 12 years and was the chair during 1992. He advocated for support and recognition of graduate nuclear and radiochemistry programs and served as the editor of an NUCL recruiting brochure during the mid-1980s. He has contributed to the extremely important San Jose and Brookhaven summer schools on nuclear and radiochemistry for undergraduates, both as an instructor and organizer, since 1984. He has campaigned for the return of the

8/13/2018

By Dave Melanson

Dave Eaton (right) a research scientist at UK's Center for Applied Energy Research (CAER), mentors Todd Prater, an elementary school student from Floyd County, Kentucky.

At a quick glance, one might not think Dave Eaton and Todd Prater would have a whole lot in common.

Eaton, an Owensboro, Kentucky, native who earned his doctoral degree in chemistry from the University of Kentucky Department of Chemistry, is the consummate, professional researcher. Carbon is his game, and the UK Center for Applied Energy Research’s (CAER)laboratories is his home away from home. Whether he is working on carbon fiber, carbon nanotubes, activated carbon or energy storage applications, Eaton is constantly pushing the boundaries of discovery.

8/3/2018
UK CLOUD-MAP S1000 UAS. Photo by: Sean Bailey.

Adapted from the original article by Lindsey Piercy published in UKNOW

LEXINGTON, Ky.​ (Aug.3, 2018) — Could unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), otherwise known as drones, revolutionize weather forecasting? The University of Kentucky continues to conduct groundbreaking research that suggests they could. 

In 2015, a four-university interdisciplinary team began developing small, affordable UAS to measure wind turbulence, atmospheric chemistry, soil moisture and thermodynamic parameters to better understand severe storm formation. The project, known as CLOUD-MAP for "Collaboration Leading Operational UAS Development for Meteorology and Atmospheric Physics," was awarded through the National Science Foundation (NSF) Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR

7/31/2018

Graduate Student Anthony Petty received an award for Best Poster at the Gordon Conference on Electronic Processes in Organic Materials. The conference, held in Tuscany, spanned a range of topics at the frontier of organic and hybrid electronics and optoelectronics. Mr. Petty’s poster was titled “The design and synthesis of high performance OFET materials through the crystal engineering of a general aromatic core”.  Mr. Petty is a graduate student in the Anthony group at UK.

 

7/25/2018
 Carboxylic acids behave as super-acids on the air side of the water surface. Credit: M. Guzman

Lexington, KY, (July 25, 2018) — Atmospheric particles with high water content also known as aerosol droplets are widely found on Earth and play a significant role in the planetary chemistry and meteorology. These particles are generally produced in relatively clean air after emissions of gases that nucleate and condense. Many times this process is dominated by organic acids that have been observed in heavily polluted cities. A challenging matter that has recently attracted the interest of many experts is the unknown mechanism by which organic carboxylic acids dissolve from the gas phase into such aqueous particles. In the new work by Prof. Marcelo Guzman and his students Alexis Eugene and Elizabeth Pillar at the University of Kentucky in collaboration with A.J. Colussi from Caltech, micrometer-sized droplets were used to show that acetic acid and pyruvic acid behave as

7/18/2018

Postdoctoral scholar Dr. Dmytro Havrylyuk received an award for the poster “Ru(II) CYP1B1 Inhibitor Prodrugs with Enhanced Potency” at the 2018 Metals in Medicine, Gordon Research Conference. The project was performed in collaboration with Kimberly Stevens and Catherine A. Denning in the laboratories of Dr. David K. Heidary and Prof. Edith C. Glazer

Dr. Havrylyuk described the development of highly potent and selective inhibitors of Cytochrome P450 1B1 (CYP1B1), an enzyme that is involved in cancer initiation, progression, and resistance to treatment. CYP1B1 is overexpressed in a wide variety of human tumors, giving it the title of “universal tumor antigen”. The enzyme catalyzes the 4-hydroxylation of 17β-estradiol to form a 3,4-quinone, which reacts with DNA, inducing mutation. CYP1B1 is also implicated in cancer

6/28/2018

Congratulations to Alysia Kohlbrand who received a Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship from UK’s Chellgren Center. This award will support Alysia to work with Drs. Edith (Phoebe) Glazer and David Heidary in the Chemistry Department, to study the effects of small molecule inhibitors on Nitric Oxide Synthase. These enzymes are used in the body to catalyze the production of nitric oxide (NO), an important signaling molecule which plays a central role in human biology. Using engineered cell lines containing fluorescent tags, Kohlbrand will study the half life of NOS in the presence of inhibitors using live cell confocal microscopy, which is particularly useful for this study because it allows for images to be taken over a long period of time without killing the cells, and creating clear, detailed images.


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