C&EN Talented 12

Joseph has been selected by Chemical & Engineering News for the 2018 edition of the Talented 12. This is an award for chemists worldwide under the age of 40. He will give a talk at the Talented 12 Symposium at the ACS meeting in Boston on August 20. Check out the C&EN writeup. Also check out related highlights in French here.

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Ed leaves for BASF

Congratulations and farewell to long-time group member Dr. Ed Richmond, who accepts a research position at BASF in Ludwigshafen. Ed published ten papers in the group (six as first author), with still more to come. We are grateful for his many contributions over the years, both scientific and social. He will be missed. Best of luck in the new career and come visit often!

Vuk wins poster prize at SCF-18

Vuk Vuković has won the EuCheMS poster prize at the 18th meeting of the French Chemical Society (SCF), held this week in Montpellier. His poster described the use of HFIP to enable dehydrative Friedel-Crafts reactions for a variety of alcohols. Way to go, Vuk!

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New publication

Ed, Jing and Vuk’s paper in Chemical Science shows that hexafluoroisopropanol solvent enables simple monosubstituted cyclopropanes to undergo ring-opening hydroarylation – no donor-acceptor motif required. A good chunk of this work came from Jing’s M2 internship in our group. Special thanks to the Rowley group from Memorial University in Canada for the DFT calculations. Congrats to all!

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New publication

Our second paper on the chemical origins of life is published in Nature Ecology & Evolution. We show that metallic iron powder fixes carbon dioxide as acetate and pyruvate much like the Acetyl CoA pathway, an ancient biological pathway used by microbes to build themselves. It represents a rare “chemistry-up” experiment that connects with the current “biology-down” understanding of early life. Congrats to Sreejith, Kamila and Paul! Free read-only version here. Paywall version here. Also check out the accompanying Behind the Paper post here.

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International Graduate School in Complex Systems Chemistry

The University of Strasbourg is pleased to announce a new combined MSc and PhD program in Complex Systems Chemistry, led by Dr. Moran and funded by the French  Excellence Initiative at 8.8 M€ over 10 years. Motivated students wishing to start an MSc should apply by April 1, 2018, with classes starting in September. MSc students will receive financial assistance for living and travel and will be eligible for funded PhD fellowships. To apply and for more information, go to grad-csc.unistra.fr .

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New publication

Ed and Vuk’s paper on the accelerating effect of HFIP solvent on nucleophilic ring-opening of donor-acceptor cyclopropanes has been published in Organic Letters. Congrats!

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