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SABMiller and Bruker Undergradaute PrizesSABMiller and Bruker Undergradaute Prizes

Prof. Mark Brouard was delighted to present the SAB Miller and Bruker Prizewinners with their prizewinning cheques, for their outstanding performance in the first year and second year exams. The first year prizes were for Oliver Yu, EXT - 3rd prize, Daniya Aynetdinova, STC - 2nd prize, and Jiratheep Pruchayathamkorn, MER - 1st Prize The second year prizes were for Theo Fletcher, NEW- 7th prize, Jennifer Sideman, CCH - 6th prize, Yuan Belinda Ding, TRI - 5th prize, Nicola Ede, LIN - 4th prize, Jonathan Yong, LIN - 3rd prize and Isabel Creed, LMH - Joint 1st prize, Henry Chan, CCH - Joint 1st prize

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The Analytical Scientist Power List 2016The Analytical Scientist Power List 2016

Professor Dame Carol Robinson has been named one of the top 50 most influential women in the analytical sciences. The Power List by the Analytical Scientist aim is to prove just how impactful and diverse the field is by sharing the passions, pivotal moments and predictions of brilliant scientists who continue to shape our future.

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GlaxoSmithKline Prizes 2016GlaxoSmithKline Prizes 2016

The Department of Chemistry was very pleased to welcome Dr Pan Procopiou and Dr Jacob Bush to present the GlaxoSmithKline Prizes to the award winners: The GlaxoSmithKline Awards in Organic Chemistry Part II and The GlaxoSmithKline 3rd Year Undergraduate Prizes in Practical Organic Chemistry.

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Hydrogen Storage highlighted in Nature Scientific ReportsHydrogen Storage highlighted in Nature Scientific Reports

Hydrogen is often described as the fuel of the future, particularly when applied to hydrogen-powered fuel cell vehicles. One of the main obstacles facing this technology – a potential solution to future sustainable transport – has been the lack of a lightweight, safe on-board hydrogen storage material.

A major new discovery by scientists at the universities of Oxford, Cambridge and Cardiff in the UK, and the King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST) in Saudi Arabia, has shown that hydrocarbon wax rapidly releases large amounts of hydrogen when activated with catalysts and microwaves. This discovery of a potential safe storage method, reported in the Nature journal Scientific Reports, could pave the way for widespread adoption of hydrogen-fuelled cars.

Study co-author Professor Peter Edwards, who leads the KACST-Oxford Petrochemical Research Centre (KOPRC), a KACST Centre of Excellence in Petrochemicals at Oxford University, said: 'This discovery of a safe, efficient hydrogen storage and production material can open the door to the large-scale application of fuel cells in vehicles.'

Co-author Dr Tiancun Xiao, a senior research fellow at Oxford University, said: 'Our discovery – that hydrogen can be easily and instantly extracted from wax, a benign material that can be manufactured from sustainable processes – is a major step forward. Wax will not catch fire or contaminate the environment. It is also safe for drivers and passengers.'

Co-author Professor Hamid Al-Megren, from the Materials Research Institute at KACST, said: 'This is an exciting development – it will allow society to utilise fossil fuels or renewable-derived wax to generate on-board hydrogen for fuel cell applications without releasing any carbon dioxide into the air.' Hydrocarbons are natural, hydrogen-rich resources with well-established infrastructures. The research team has developed highly selective catalysts with the assistance of microwave irradiation, which can extract hydrogen from hydrocarbons instantly through a non-oxidative dehydrogenation process. This will help unlock the longstanding bottleneck hindering the widespread adoption of hydrogen fuel technology.

Co-author Professor Angus Kirkland, from the Department of Materials at Oxford University and Science Director at the new electron Physical Science Imaging Centre (ePSIC) at Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, described the breakthrough as an exemplar of how Oxford is able to respond to key academic and industrial problems by using interdisciplinary resources and expertise.

Co-author Professor Sir John Meurig Thomas, from the Department of Materials Science and Metallurgy at the University of Cambridge, said the work could be extended so that many of the liquid components of refined petroleum and inexpensive solid catalysts can pave the way for the generation of massive quantities of high-purity hydrogen for other commercial uses, including CO2-free energy production.

Professor Edwards added: 'Instead of burning fossil fuels, leading to CO2, we use them to generate hydrogen, which with fuel cells produces electric power and pure water. This is the future – transportation without CO2 and hot air.'

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AstraZeneca Sponsored Final Year D.Phil Symposium 2016AstraZeneca Sponsored Final Year D.Phil Symposium 2016

Congratulations to the four final year D.Phil students Simon Werrel (Donohoe group), Amelie Joffrin (Conway group), Erin Shepherd (Burton group) and Matt Bilyard (Davis group) who were awarded prizes for their talks at the two day Organic & Chemical Biology D.Phil Symposium.

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Best Established Medtech & Outstanding Achievement AwardBest Established Medtech & Outstanding Achievement Award

Oxford Nanopore Technologies the spin-out was awarded the Best Established Medtech & Outstanding Achievement Award at the Oxfordshire Bioscience Network (OBN) 2016 Awards ceremony on 6th October. The Best Established Medtech Company Award was for developing the world's first and only nanopore DNA sequencer and the Outstanding Achievement Award for being extremely disruptive in their field and setting an excellent example to the industry.

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OxStem Ltd wins Best Start-up Biotech Company AwardOxStem Ltd wins Best Start-up Biotech Company Award

OxStem Ltd, a University of Oxford spin-out company co-founded by Professor Steve Davies and Prof. Angela Russell, was awarded the Best Biotech Start-up Company Award at the Oxfordshire Bioscience Network (OBN) 2016 Awards ceremony on 6th October. The awards, held annually, celebrate innovation and achievement in the UK Life Sciences across Biotech, Medtech, Synthetic Biology and Digital Health categories. John Harris, CEO of OBN, said: "We are thrilled with the high quality of nominees this year which made picking just one winner in each category very difficult”. The company was recognised for it's disruptive approach to the field of regenerative medicine.

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John Weil Young Investigator AwardJohn Weil Young Investigator Award

Dr Claudia Tait, who undertook her DPhil work in CAESR, has been awarded the prestigious John Weil Young Investigator Award by the International ESR Society for the work conducted during her doctorate studies in the Timmel group. Her research mainly focussed on the characterisation of spin delocalisation in cationic and photogenerated triplet states of porphyrin nanoassemblies synthesized in the Anderson group

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Industry Fellowship for Tom FlemingIndustry Fellowship for Tom Fleming

Tom Fleming, DPhil Student in the Synthesis for Biology & Medicine Centre for Doctoral Training, has received a prestigious Industrial Fellowship from the Royal Commission of 1851 for his research on ways to improve chemotherapy treatments . The fellowships are given to the UK’s most promising young doctoral scientists and engineers to help fund their projects and bring their technology to fruition.

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Science paper highlighted in C&ENScience paper highlighted in C&EN

Work from the Ben Davis group on radical methods for protein modification has been published as a Research Article in Science. The work, performed in collaboration with the Baldwin, Claridge, Kessler and Mohammed groups, uses an introduced dehydroalanine residue as a radico-phile ‘tag’ for further functionalization via carbon-carbon bond formation. A range of unnatural and unnatural amino acids can thus be introduced into a protein of choice, both to emulate natural modifications and introduce reporters such as isotope labels.

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Best Short TalkBest Short Talk

Congratulations to Shuyu Chu, a 3rd year DPhil student in Martin Smith’s group, who won the best short talk prize at the Royal Society of Chemistry Heterocyclic and Synthesis Group 31st Postgraduate Symposium in Nottingham. Shuyu’s talk described the synthesis of two complex alkaloids, Gephyrotoxin and Morphine.

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New elements in graduate trainingNew elements in graduate training

A new article about the SBM CDT published on the MPLS website, entitled "New elements in graduate training”, describes how SBM CDT's innovative approach to graduate training is enabling the Department of Chemistry to build strong links with industry and train up a new generation of chemists with commercially-relevant expertise.

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A Century of Organic ChemistryA Century of Organic Chemistry

A day of celebrations was held on Saturday September 17th to mark the centenary of the Dyson Perrins Laboratory, named after C W Dyson Perrins, the philanthropist (and heir to the Lea and Perrins Worcestershire sauce empire) whose generous benefaction enabled its construction. The DP was home to some of the most important research and eminent organic chemists of the 20th Century. Attended by alumni, students and staff, a series of talks was hosted by Head of Organic Chemistry Professor Chris Schofield FRS. The speakers were science historian Allan Chapman, Emeritus Professor John Brown FRS, Professor Tim Donohoe, and (pictured) Mr Andrew Perrins, great grandson of C W Dyson Perrins.

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Cover art for ChemCommCover art for ChemComm

A research paper from Professor Dermot O'Hare has been featured on the cover of RSC's ChemComm. The work reports the first direct synthesis and spectroscopic characterisation of a solid-phase frustrated Lewis pair (s-FLP) that is able to cleave hydrogen under mild conditions. This now opens the possibility of making heterogeneous catalytic systems using the FLP approach. The cover was designed by Karl Harrison

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Ronald Breslow Award for Achievement in Biomimetic ChemistryRonald Breslow Award for Achievement in Biomimetic Chemistry

Professor Ben Davis has been awarded the Ronald Breslow Award for Achievement in Biomimetic Chemistry, sponsored by the Ronald Breslow Award Endowment as part of the American Chemical Society 2017 National Awards. The award was established on March 24, 2001 at a symposium held at Columbia University in honor of Ronald Breslow's 70th birthday by his friends, former students, and associates. The award consists of $5,000 and a certificate.

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BBC highlights Intensive care machine from Oxford ChemistryBBC highlights Intensive care machine from Oxford Chemistry

Care for critically-ill patients with shock could be improved, it is hoped, after the first successful testing by University of Oxford scientists of a new machine to record oxygen consumption in real time. The new technology has arisen through a collaboration between Professor Peter Robbins in the Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics and Professors Grant Ritchie and Gus Hancock in the Department of Chemistry. It combines laser spectroscopy and precise flow measurement of breath in a single medical device which fits into a standard ventilation tube. The work has received public funding from the NIHR Oxford Biomedical Research Centre and the Medical Research Council. Listen to a four-minute interview with the University's Professor Grant Ritchie by clicking the link below, from 1h42m12s.

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ISMSC 2016 Poster Prize for Dan KohnISMSC 2016 Poster Prize for Dan Kohn

Congratulations to Dan Kohn for winning a prize for his poster titled "Porphyrin-Polyyne Polyrotaxanes” at the International Symposium on Macrocyclic and Supramolecular Chemistry (ISMSC) in Seoul, South Korea. Dan is a D.Phil. student in Harry Anderson’s group.

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Poster PrizePoster Prize

Congratulations to year-2 student Domagoj Fijan, who received 2nd prize for his poster at the RSC Theoretical Chemistry Group Conference in Nottingham. The meeting will covered a broad spectrum of theoretical and computational chemistry, including talks by leading international and UK scientists. It will also incorporated the TCG Graduate Student Meeting, where final-year graduate students compete for the Coulson prize for the best graduate student talk.

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Oxford Nanopore blasts off into spaceOxford Nanopore blasts off into space

Oxford Nanopore MinION DNA sequencer blasts off to the International Space Station. Astronaut Kate Rubins will be performing proof of concept experiments on the space station, to see if the technology can be taken forward to be used in projects to analyse the environment aboard the ISS, astronaut health or even one day to be used to surveil for signs of life further afield.

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ISMSC 2016 Poster Prize for Jason LimISMSC 2016 Poster Prize for Jason Lim

Jason Lim, a DPhil student from the Beer group, has received a poster prize in the recent 11th International Symposium on Macrocyclic and Supramolecular Chemistry (ISMSC), held in Seoul, South Korea. Jason presented a poster featuring his recent work on the use of halogen bonding interactions to enhance the enantio-selective binding and sensing of chiral anions in solution.

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Angewandte Chemie FrontispieceAngewandte Chemie Frontispiece

Research by Dr. Alexander Hinz and ProfessorJose Goicoechea has been highlighted in Angewandte Chemie International Edition as a frontispiece design. The works shows the synthesis of the 2-arsaethynolate anion AsCO− through carbonylation of NaAsH2. The AsCO− can undergo cyclization with unsaturated substrates to yield novel heterocyclic species. The illustration was designed by Karl Harrison

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17th Tetrahedron Symposium and L'Oréal-UNESCO for Women in Science17th Tetrahedron Symposium and L'Oréal-UNESCO for Women in Science

Congratulations to Tharindi Panduwawala from the Moloney group for winning the Best Poster Award at the 17th Tetrahedron Symposium held in Sitges, Spain from 28th June to 1st July for the poster titled 'Natural product guided antibacterial drug discovery: tetramates as core scaffolds'. She was also among the 10 finalists invited to the Royal Society, London to present her research work at the L'Oréal-UNESCO for Women in Science PhD poster competition, UK and Ireland.

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CPLT 2016 Poster PrizeCPLT 2016 Poster Prize

Jutta Toscano, a PhD student in the Softley group, won the poster prize at the Chemistry and Physics at Low Temperature conference in Biarritz, July 2016. Jutta's presented her work on the use of genetic algorithms, explaining how these can increase the deceleration and molecular density achievable with a short Zeeman decelerator.

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Menelaus Medal awarded to Professor Hagan BayleyMenelaus Medal awarded to Professor Hagan Bayley

Hagan Bayley was honoured to be awarded the Menelaus Medal for 2016 by the Learned Society of Wales, of which he is a Fellow. William Menelaus was an engineer who made his fortune running a 19th-century ironworks in South Wales. The medal is awarded in any field of engineering and technology to a person connected with Wales; Hagan was bought up in Prestatyn, on the North Wales coast. The award came at a busy time. On Wednesday 18th May, after his morning Chemistry lecture, he rushed to Cardiff by train in time for the presentation and a delightful dinner at the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama. Then, there was just time for a couple of pints of Brains in celebration, before getting up at 5 am to be back in time for his Thursday morning lecture in Oxford. Later this year, Hagan will give the Medal lecture in Bangor.

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'Hot article' in Chemistry-A European Journal'Hot article' in Chemistry-A European Journal

Recent work from Andrey Protchenko and Part 2 student Matt Usher in the Aldridge group has been selected as a 'hot article' by the editors of Chemistry-A European Journal. The paper reports on the activation of hydrogen, ammonia and other E-H bonds by germanium analogues of carbenes.

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Audience with HRH Princess Sirindhorn of ThailandAudience with HRH Princess Sirindhorn of Thailand

Professor Dermot O’Hare, Director of the SCG-Oxford Centre of Excellence for Chemistry (CoE) and the management of SCG recently had an audience with HRH Princess Sirindhorn of Thailand on the occasion of a celebration of Thailand-UK Science and Innovation Partnership.

The CoE is a unique collaboration between SCG and the University of Oxford. The centre focuses on the research and development in the area of Nano Materials and Catalysis, with its own dedicated laboratories in the Department of Chemistry. Professor Dermot O’Hare, Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry, serves as the Director. He recently received an MPLS Impact Award from the University in recognition of the creation of the CoE.

Since its establishment in 2012, the centre has published 40 publications in leading international journals and filed 30 patents. In 2014/15, 12% of all the new Intellectual Property from the University of Oxford originated from the centre.

Such mutual collaboration has led to the commercialization of breakthrough technologies, bringing benefits directly to the economy and society. Newly developed Nano materials have advanced properties ranging from biocompatibility, ultra high surface area and transparent hydrocarbon dispersion. These materials have tremendous potential across a range of industries e.g. chemicals, cement-building material and packaging.

The establishment of the centre itself has strengthened scientific and commercial ties between the UK and Thailand leading to Professor Dermot O’Hare and SCG's presentation to HRH Princess Sirindhorn, which was a tremendous honour.

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On the Cover of RSC ChemCommOn the Cover of RSC ChemComm

Research carried out in the Gouverneur group has been highlighted on the front cover of Chemical Communications. The work carried out in collaboration with IMANOVA and ABX GmbH demonstrates that eight clinically important radiotracers are now directly accessible from arylboronic esters and [18F]KF/K222 in the presence of Cu(OTf)2py4. The method was successfully applied using three radiosynthetic platforms, and up to 26 GBq of non-carrier added starting activity of 18F-fluoride. The cover illustration was produced by Karl Harrison.

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2016 Reaxys PhD Prize Finalist2016 Reaxys PhD Prize Finalist

Robert Straker, who undertook his DPhil with Ed Anderson, has been selected as a finalist for the 2016 Reaxys PhD Prize. As a finalist he will present his work at the Reaxys PhD Prize Symposium, held in London in September, where the three winners will be announced

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Future Leaders in ChemistryFuture Leaders in Chemistry

Wilian Cortopassi, a PhD student in the Paton group, has been chosen as a Future Leader in Chemistry by SciFinder (ACS). In August 2016, he will join a select group of international Ph.D. students and postdoctoral researchers in Columbus (USA) to help shape the future of research information

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On the Cover of Organic & Biomolecular ChemistryOn the Cover of Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry

A review on ring-closing alkene metathesis in natural product synthesis by David Hodgson, cowritten with 5 of the current first year SBM CDT cohort and OxIOSCR IDP student and Hodgson group member Aubert Ribaucourt, has been highlighted on the front cover of Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry and as a ‘Hot Article'. The cover illustration was produced by Karl Harrison.

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