Nanotechnology Now







Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > Rice's Zheng wins Packard Fellowship: Chemist will build spectrometer to analyze molecules in 3-D

Rice University chemist Junrong Zheng will use his Packard Foundation award to build a spectrometer that can determine the conformation of molecules in three dimensions.

Credit: Jeff Fitlow/Rice University
Rice University chemist Junrong Zheng will use his Packard Foundation award to build a spectrometer that can determine the conformation of molecules in three dimensions.

Credit: Jeff Fitlow/Rice University

Abstract:
Junrong Zheng's techniques to see the fine details of how molecules interact have earned the young Rice University scientist a highly prestigious Packard Fellowship.

Rice's Zheng wins Packard Fellowship: Chemist will build spectrometer to analyze molecules in 3-D

Houston, TX | Posted on October 20th, 2011

Zheng and his team of postdoctoral researchers and graduate students will use the five-year grant that comes with the fellowship to build a laser-based spectroscopic device to easily see the conformation -- the shape and orientation -- of any molecule, no matter how complex.

Zheng, an assistant professor of chemistry who joined Rice in 2008, discovered a method to analyze the natural vibrations of the bonds that hold molecules together in a way that can tell him how far apart those molecules are. Further work led to a 2-D method for finding the angles at which the atoms within a molecule bond.

Now Zheng is preparing to leap into real-time, three-dimensional analysis of molecular conformations. Doing so will take some time and effort -- and money -- to build a machine capable of looking at molecular details in a way nobody has before. A successful effort could mean a quantum leap in the study of chemical reactions, protein folding, drug/protein interactions, doped nanomaterials and molecular recognition.

Zheng anticipates it will take five years to build the machine, a full-spectrum, multidimensional spectrometer that can read a wide range of frequencies from the high infrared to the low terahertz. It will allow researchers to take snapshots of molecules that could provide in seconds data that now takes days to acquire.

He knows firsthand about that process; he published a paper this year that detailed his technique for acquiring 3-D data from a specific molecule.

The paper in the Journal of Physical Chemistry described how Zheng and his team analyzed the conformations of a small molecule, 1-cyanovinyl acetate, known to contain a wide range of vibrational energy.

Theoretical calculations of the five possible conformations of the molecule let them compare what they saw through physical analysis with a two-dimensional infrared spectrometer designed by Zheng and his team. The comparison showed theory and experimental results in virtually perfect alignment.

Zheng believed results for molecules bigger than the fast-moving 1-cyanovinyl acetate would be just as good because their rotations are slower.

Zheng said the machine, when finished, will probably be the only one of its kind in the world. The goal is the development of a sophisticated yet routine analytic tool for determining molecular structure for chemists and researchers who are not laser specialists.

"Hopefully, we can make it very easy to use, so everybody can go buy one," he said.

The David and Lucille Packard Foundation names 16 award winners every year from among 100 nominees who represent 50 American research universities. Zheng is the fifth Rice researcher to win. He joins Rice physicists Thomas Killian and Douglas Natelson and Earth scientists Cin-Ty Lee and Rajdeep Dasgupta.

"I didn't anticipate this award, because I know some very important people in our field have won it," Zheng said. "I know it's very competitive, so it means people appreciate my work."

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Mike Williams

713-348-6728

Copyright © Rice University

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

Quantum teleportation on a chip: A significant step towards ultra-high speed quantum computers April 1st, 2015

So, near and yet so far: Stable HGNs for Raman April 1st, 2015

Two-dimensional dirac materials: Structure, properties, and rarity April 1st, 2015

3-D neural structure guided with biocompatible nanofiber scaffolds and hydrogels April 1st, 2015

Chemistry

Tokyo Institute of Technology research: Catalyst redefines rate limitations in ammonia production March 30th, 2015

Chemists make new silicon-based nanomaterials March 27th, 2015

First proof of isolated attosecond pulse generation at the carbon K-edge March 20th, 2015

Click! That's how modern chemistry bonds nanoparticles to a substrate March 19th, 2015

Announcements

Quantum teleportation on a chip: A significant step towards ultra-high speed quantum computers April 1st, 2015

So, near and yet so far: Stable HGNs for Raman April 1st, 2015

Two-dimensional dirac materials: Structure, properties, and rarity April 1st, 2015

3-D neural structure guided with biocompatible nanofiber scaffolds and hydrogels April 1st, 2015

Tools

So, near and yet so far: Stable HGNs for Raman April 1st, 2015

PIHera: Largest Family of Piezo Stage Scanners with 10X Greater Positioning Area March 31st, 2015

New Applications Brochure on Complex Motion Control Systems for Scientific Research March 31st, 2015

'Atomic chicken-wire' is key to faster DNA sequencing March 30th, 2015

Grants/Awards/Scholarships/Gifts/Contests/Honors/Records

Nanomedicine pioneer Mauro Ferrari at ETH Zurich March 31st, 2015

SUNY Poly CNSE and Title Sponsor SEFCU Name Capital Region Teams Advancing to the Final Round of the 2015 New York Business Plan Competition March 30th, 2015

Princess Margaret scientists convert microbubbles to nanoparticles: Harnessing light to advance tumor imaging, provide platform for targeted treatment March 30th, 2015

FEI Technology Award of the German Neuroscience Society Goes to Benjamin Judkewitz of the University of Berlin: Bi-annual award honors excellence in brain research during the German Neuroscience Society’s Annual Meeting, held 18-21 March 2015 March 26th, 2015

Photonics/Optics/Lasers

Quantum teleportation on a chip: A significant step towards ultra-high speed quantum computers April 1st, 2015

Light-powered gyroscope is world's smallest: Promises a powerful spin on navigation April 1st, 2015

Rutgers, NIST physicists report technology with potential for sub-micron optical switches March 31st, 2015

Super sensitive measurement of magnetic fields March 31st, 2015

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More










ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







© Copyright 1999-2015 7th Wave, Inc. All Rights Reserved PRIVACY POLICY :: CONTACT US :: STATS :: SITE MAP :: ADVERTISE