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Nick Funnell wins UK Chemical Crystallography PrizeNick Funnell wins UK Chemical Crystallography Prize

Nick Funnell, an ERC-funded postdoc in the Goodwin group, has been awarded the CCDC Chemical Crystallography Prize for Young Scientists. This is the premier UK award for early-career researchers in the field of Chemical Crystallography; the award includes a monetary prize, a commemorative plaque, and an invited lecture at the British Crystallographic Association Spring Meeting. Nick has the added distinction of winning this award in the 50th year of the CSD. As a consequence he has been invited by the CCDC to present an plenary lecture at a special celebration of chemical crystallography to be held in Cambridge in July.

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Royal Society of Chemistry Outreach FundRoyal Society of Chemistry Outreach Fund

Drs Stewart and Birembaut successfully secured a grant from the RSC outreach fund to sponsor a one-day meeting to discuss outreach within the HE sector on the 15th of April. Oxford Chemistry engaged with over 6,000 students at outreach events last year and we feel we can do better! The meeting will attempt to discover novel ways to improve what we offer and will be attended by representatives from HEIs across the UK. There is still time to join us, so if interested, please register by completing the form on our website

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On the cover of CrystEngCommOn the cover of CrystEngComm

A method for predicting crystallinity of molecular materials by Jerome Wicker, a DPhil in the Cooper group, has been featured on the cover of CrystEngComm. The research uses large sets of data of known molecules and crystal structures to train machine learning algorithms to predict which will crystallise easily. The cover was design by Karl Harrison

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On the cover of ChemCommOn the cover of ChemComm

A new synthesis of ynamides developed by the Anderson group has been featured on the cover of Chemical Communications. This chemistry was developed by Steven Mansfield, a Part II student in the Anderson group, and solves many of the substrate limitations that have plagued the synthesis of this functional group, and employs a modular approach from cheap commercial starting materials. The cover art was produced by Karl Harrison

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The New Chemistry of the Elements - Meeting issueThe New Chemistry of the Elements - Meeting issue

In May 2014, a discussion meeting entitled "The new chemistry of the elements" took place – the first ever linking the Royal Society of Great Britain and the German Academy of Sciences, Leopoldina. The meeting confirmed and highlighted that the periodic table of the chemical elements still represents a significant signpost on the road to our understanding the structure of our natural world. The meeting also highlighted that the periodic table now underpins diverse multi-disciplinary research, inspiring and catalysing new advances and new avenues of research across the entire physical, biological and medical sciences.
Peter Edwards, one of the organisers of the meeting noted :
"The periodic table of the chemical elements is the most fundamental natural system of classification ever devised. There is an important parallel between Mendeleev’s discovery of the periodic table and Darwin’s discovery of evolution by natural selection in that both are logical constructs supported by scientific evidence which stimulate and catalyse further advances . These two theories were based on critical observations and brilliant intuition and premises that are correct enough both to withstand the test of time and to be built on in new areas of modern science. The meeting was a joy to attend and to be inspired by the remarkable progress one sees in the new science of the chemical elements across the periodic table."
This volume of Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society was dedicated to the memory of Professor Jack Lewis FRS, Baron Lewis of Newnham, one of the father figures of the modern subject, who died last summer.
The cover is a representation of the modern periodic table of the chemical elements based on the covalent radii of the elements. Metallic and non-metallic status of the chemical elements taken from G. T. Seaborg, Dalton Trans., 1996, 3899. Credit: Karl Harrison, University of Oxford.

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ICL Collaboration highlighted by CrystEngCommICL Collaboration highlighted by CrystEngComm

Josh Hill and Simon Cassidy, DPhil students in the Goodwin and Clarke groups, have discovered that a simple iron-containing material can intercalate potassium with essentially no volume change. Their results identify new design strategies that may prove valuable in the development of strain-free battery materials. Recently been published in CrystEngComm, their work has now been featured by the journal both as a "HOT Article" for January on the cover of an upcoming issue.

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Synthetic strategies for the inhibition of protein-protein interactionsSynthetic strategies for the inhibition of protein-protein interactions

Research into non-peptidic mimicry of beta-sheet protein structure by Part II student Lizzie German, working with Sam Thompson and Andrew Hamilton, is published in Angewandte Chemie.

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Craig Slater wins Oxford’s Springer Thesis PrizeCraig Slater wins Oxford’s Springer Thesis Prize

Dr Craig Slater (Brouard Group) has been awarded a Springer Thesis Prize for his PhD thesis, titled ‘Studies of Photoinduced Molecular Dynamics Using a Fast Imaging Sensor’. This award recognises the work as the best physical sciences thesis from the University of Oxford examined during the past year, and the thesis will be published in full as a monograph in the ‘Springer Theses’ series. Craig’s work involved a number of sophisticated experiments highlighting novel applications of the Pixel Imaging Mass Spectrometry (PImMS) camera in the field of photoinduced molecular dynamics. This approach represents a marriage of a new enabling technology (a multiple memory register, CMOS-based pixel detector) with several modern chemical physics approaches and represents a significant leap forward in capabilities.

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The Importance of Chemistry to Human Health - Antibiotics, The War on BacteriaThe Importance of Chemistry to Human Health - Antibiotics, The War on Bacteria

Two first year DPhil Organic Chemistry (Synthesis for Biology & Medicine CDT) students; Moses Moustakim and Tom Fleming have recently submitted their entry to the RSC 1 minute video competition: The Importance of Chemistry to Human Health. Moses and Tom chose to focus on antibiotics and the way in which chemistry is being used as a tool to tackle the ever-increasing global threat of widespread antibiotic resistance. Professor Mark Maloney also features with a final take on this prominent issue. If selected, Moses & Tom’s video will be pitched against other shortlisted videos and you the public will be able to decide a winner! Check our the video here.

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2015 Schlenk Lectureship for Professor Philip Mountford2015 Schlenk Lectureship for Professor Philip Mountford

Professor Philip Mountford has been awarded the 2015 Schlenk Lectureship sponsored by BASF and the University of Tübingen, Germany, for his outstanding research into small molecule activation chemistry. The Schlenk Lecture was established in order to honour Wilhelm Johann Schlenk as a brilliant scientist and a man of extraordinary moral courage, and includes a monetary prize, guest professorship, and additional allowances for accommodation and travelling. Previous prize winners are Warren Piers (University of Calgary, 2011), and Kyoko Nozaki (Tokyo University, 2013).

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Top 20 in JACSTop 20 in JACS

Research into a new catalyst for the production of hydrogen from ammonia by Professor Bill David, DPhil student Josh Makepeace, and colleagues at the ISIS Neutron and Muon Facility was one of the top 20 most downloaded articles from the Journal of the American Chemical Society website over the past 12 months. Cheap and effective catalysts for the decomposition of ammonia may help pave the way for its use in a variety of energy storage applications.

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Lilly Prizes for Excellence in Organic Chemistry ResearchLilly Prizes for Excellence in Organic Chemistry Research

The Lilly Prizes for Excellence in Organic Chemistry Research are awarded by Eli Lilly and Company Ltd. They are awarded for excellence in the first year of postgraduate study and are assessed on the quality of experimental work, written submission and viva voce at the point of examination for PRS transfer of status to DPhil. Dr Magnus Walter from Lilly’s came to award the prizes on Thursday 22 January.

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£2.2M Project led by Professor Tom Brown£2.2M Project led by Professor Tom Brown

Business Secretary Vince Cable has announced £40M investment in UK synthetic biology, this includes £8M to help create the building blocks of synthetic biology – the synthetic fragments of DNA needed to create useful biological components. The funding will build capacity in DNA synthesis through University partnerships. Of that £2.2M is for a project at Oxford, Liverpool, Bristol, Southampton, and Birmingham universities led by Professor Tom Brown, which will analyse DNA made by modern ultra-high throughput chemical methods and optimise the process. They will also explore new ways to make large pieces of DNA.

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Fiery science experiment on chilli heatFiery science experiment on chilli heat

Students from across Camden and Haringey have used chemistry to test the heat of chillies at a workshop led by Oxford University academics. A-level pupils studying chemistry listened to talks and carried out experiments with chillies at the event hosted by Highgate School on Saturday. Schools taking part included Camden School for Girls in Kentish Town, La Sainte Union School in Dartmouth Park, Maria Fidelis School in Euston, and Alexandra Park School in Muswell Hill. The workshop, led by electrochemists at Oxford University, was designed to equip pupils with the skills to carry out their own research project linked to their findings from the day.

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Dr Allan Chapman wins the RAS' Jackson-Gwilt medalDr Allan Chapman wins the RAS' Jackson-Gwilt medal

Dr. Allan Chapman - Part II supervisor for the History of Science - has been awarded the prestigious Jackson-Gwilt medal of the Royal Astronomical Society. The Jackson-Gwilt Medal is awarded for single investigations of outstanding merit in either: the invention, improvement or development of astronomical instrumentation or techniques; achievement in observational astronomy; or in the history of astronomy.

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Published in NaturePublished in Nature

Research by Hengzhi You, Emeline Rideau and Mireia Sidera of the Fletcher group has been published in Nature. Editor’s summary: "The paper reports a new and broadly applicable method for the catalytic asymmetric synthesis of C-C bonds, one that fills a long-standing gap in the armoury of the synthetic organic chemist…the method makes use of a copper catalysed dynamic kinetic asymmetric transformation using racemic substrates and alkyl nucleophiles.” The method was also used to make natural products active against leprosy and tuberculosis.

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‘Why choose SBM?’ - SBM CDT Promotional Film‘Why choose SBM?’ - SBM CDT Promotional Film

The EPSRC CDT in Synthesis for Biology and Medicine (SBM) has released a promotional film about their 4-year doctoral programme in synthetic chemistry. Students from the first cohort explain their reasons for applying to SBM and how their first few months on the programme have exceeded their expectations. The film is mainly directed at prospective candidates to this PhD programme, highlighting the interdisciplinary environment of the CDT, the focus on developing next-generation synthetic chemists and the Department¹s research environment and facilities. For more information on SBM CDT: http://www.oxfordsynthesiscdt.ox.ac.uk/

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University Science Blog highlights Ritchie/Hancock breath research.University Science Blog highlights Ritchie/Hancock breath research.

A recent publication in the Journal of Breath Research features a collaboration between the Ritchie/Hancock groups in the PTCL, the Oxford Hospital Trust, and the spin-out company Oxford Medical Diagnostics. The work demonstrated a positive relationship between breath acetone and blood ketones in a study of children and young adults with type 1 diabetes, and indicated that breath testing may be of significance in the management of the disease, avoiding the normal method of blood testing for ketones. In addition to featuring on the University Science Blog the results have been widely reported in the press, and have been the subject of a television presentation by Reuters.

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Izatt-Christensen Award for Professor Paul BeerIzatt-Christensen Award for Professor Paul Beer

Professor Paul Beer has been awarded the 2015 Izatt-Christensen Award for his great impact on the field of macrocyclic and supramolecular chemistry both in creative research and in the training of students. The Award is sponsored by IBC Advanced Technologies, Inc. and will be presented at the Symposium on Macrocyclic and Supramolecular Chemistry, to be held in Strasbourg, France June 28-July 2, 2015. Professor Paul Beer will have the honor of presenting the Award Lecture at that Symposium. The Award consists of a plaque and an honorarium of $3000.

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Published in Nature Communications Published in Nature Communications

Sub-surface Modification of ​Palladium in Catalysis' presented in Nature Communications Aaron Chan and Hanif Mahadi of Edman Tsang group in collaboration with James Cookson and colleagues of Johnson Matthey have recently demonstrated that boron atoms in ​palladium interstitial lattice sites show a strong host–guest electronic interaction. The adsorptive properties of ​palladium are thus modified by the subsurface boron atoms and display ultra-selectivity in a number of challenging alkyne hydrogenation reactions, which outclass the performance of conventional Lindlar catalysts

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University Science Blog Highlights Bayley ResearchUniversity Science Blog Highlights Bayley Research

Dr Gokce Su Pulcu working the Professor Bayley research group has had a recent publication published in this week's Nature Nanotechnology highlighted in the University's science blog. The paper records the for the first nanometre-sized steps of a walking molecule. The breakthrough is a significant milestone on the long road towards developing 'nanorobots'

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Thieme Chemistry AwardThieme Chemistry Award

Dr Robert Paton has received a Thieme Chemistry Journal Award for 2015. Thieme Chemistry Journal Awardees are chosen by the editorial boards of Synlett, Synthesis and Synfacts as promising young professors at the beginning of their career.

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On the cover of the Journal of Chemical PhysicsOn the cover of the Journal of Chemical Physics

Research by the Doye group has featured on the cover of the Journal of Chemical Physics. Their simulations reveal the mechanism underlying silver iodide's exceptional ability to nucleate ice. The cover image shows both the hexagonal ice-like layer that rapidly forms at the surface and the further ice growth that occurs from this layer.

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Oxford University Teaching AwardsOxford University Teaching Awards

Dr Nicholas Green has received an Individual Teaching Award - made in recognition of Nicholas’ contribution to teaching and learning. His work has been well received by students and staff alike. The Teaching Awards scheme, which is coordinated by the Oxford Learning Institute, recognises excellence in college and University teaching, with the winners selected by their divisions. In addition to academic staff, the award winners include a number of administrative and support staff, including library staff, who were recognised for their contributions to the success of University courses.

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Wiley PTC Practical Prizes November 2014Wiley PTC Practical Prizes November 2014

Six Chemistry students were honoured for their practical work in Physical and Theoretical Chemistry at the Physical & Theoretical Chemistry Part II Open Day and Wine Reception on Monday 24 November 2014, sponsored by Wiley. The winning students were Yining Yang (1st Year, Merton College), William Hartz (1st Year, St Catherine's College), Rebecca Brown (2nd Year, St Hugh's College), Thomas Vipond (2nd Year, Keble College), Susanna Archer (3rd Year, Queen's College), Philip Welch (3rd Year, University College). Congratulations on an outstanding performance in the PTC practical laboratories. The Department is very grateful to Wiley for funding these prizes and supporting the wine reception.

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