Seventeen researchers at the
"We would like to thank
Among the UOIT recipients are two up-and-coming researchers who recently joined the university: Dr.
* Link to complete list of UOIT researchers, their projects and NSERC funding received (http://www.nserc-crsng.gc.ca/NSERC-CRSNG/FundingDecisions-DecisionsFinancement/ResearchGrants-SubventionsDeRecherche/ResultsInsDetail-ResultatsEtabDetails_eng.asp?Year=2014&Province=Ontario&Institution=Ontario+Institute+of+Technology)
As an expert in Organic and Medicinal Chemistry, Dr. Bolshan is researching novel ways to form carbon-carbon bonds and their application to the synthesis of biologically active molecules.
The carbon-carbon bonding process, key to the production of natural products, pharmaceuticals and plastics, often requires the use of transition metals, such as palladium, as catalysts. These metals can be expensive and toxic. In addition, metal-catalyzed reactions in many cases require specific conditions.
Dr. Bolshan's research offers a greener alternative: the use of non-toxic, transition-metal-free reactions involving organoboranes - chemical compounds based on boron, an inexpensive and environmentally benign element. Together with master's student
"Overall, the outcomes of this research will result in greater atom economy and will decrease the amount of toxic waste associated with metals in both academic and industrial settings," Dr. Bolshan said. "It will lead to greener methods for synthesizing the compounds that are crucial to biological and medicinal discovery and advancement."
Dr. MacDonald is working on developing energy-efficient, high-capacity and environmentally friendly evaporative cooling technology. Current cooling technology used in living and work spaces can place high demands on energy requirements. Many cooling methods also require the use of environment-damaging refrigerants. Scientists are also trying to develop better cooling methods for electronic devices, which can overheat from high power demands.
Dr. MacDonald is looking at developing a more environmentally-friendly cooling technology that mimics perspiration, nature's cooling mechanism for humans. Through perspiration, humans cool off naturally as the droplets on their skin evaporate.
"Gaining a better understanding of the evaporation process is becoming increasingly important as technology decreases in size to the micro- and nano-scales," said Dr. MacDonald.
The Discovery Grants Program is NSERC's largest program and a key element of
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