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Awards:

Jon Abbatt and Bob Morris Killam Research Fellowship Recipients

Jon Abbatt and Bob Morris Killam Research Fellowship Recipients

Please join me in congratulating Jon Abbatt and Bob Morris who are recipients of 2015 Killam Research Fellowships. As you know these fellowships are among Canada's most distinguished research awards, enabling scientists and scholars to devote two years to a specific full time research project.

Jon was awarded the Fellowship for his project Aerosol Particles and Climate: Addressing Fundamental Connections in the Canadian Arctic. In particular, he is the Principal Investigator of NETCARE, an NSERC-funded Canadian network addressing aerosol-climate connections in remote environments. The Fellowship will give him the opportunity to collaborate with NETCARE co-investigators and to participate in field experiments.

Bob works towards a greener chemical industry. Bob’s project, Developing Catalysts based on Iron, will focus on better understanding newly discovered iron compounds that promise to replace the rare, expensive and sometimes toxic platinum metal hydrogenation catalysts that are currently used for the synthesis of fuels, pharmaceuticals, agrochemicals and fragrances. Further development of the syntheses of these valuable chemicals strongly depends on the discovery of green, efficient and selective catalysts. Bob is already responsible for major breakthroughs in his field and, with others, has laid the foundation for further success in replacing less-environmentally friendly chemical processes.

In the News:

Frank Wania and Carl Mitchell’s collaborative project is one of twelve at U of T now funded by NSERC's Strategic Project Grants Program

Frank Wania and Carl Mitchell’s collaborative project is one of twelve at U of T now funded by NSERC's Strategic Project Grants Program

NSERC recently announced that a project developed by Professor Frank Wania and Environmental Science Professor Carl Mitchell is one of twelve U of T projects awarded funding from its Strategic Grants Program. The program awarded $5.3 million to early-stage projects at the University of Toronto that might otherwise go unfunded due to their high-risk nature. Wania and Mitchell's project addresses the high-cost of the current technique for measuring atmospheric mercury, which limits analysis to scattered sites in wealthy countries. Because the prototype tool they’ve developed makes measuring atmospheric mercury simple and inexpensive, it could lead to more widespread testing and source identification of mercury contamination, most importantly in countries where the current technique is not affordable. U of T News has published an article on the NSERC program that features Wania and Mitchell's project.

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Heavy atom substitution is a promising strategy for the development of high performance materials for organic electronic applications. In particular, the use of tellurium in place of selenium or sulfur in conjugated polymers lends new properties to these materials such as red-shifted optical absorption, high polarizability, high dielectric constant, and strong intermolecular interactions. These properties are favorable for polymer electronics. The use of polymers containing tellurophene, the tellurium analogue of the well-studied thiophene, has only recently begun to emerge in the literature. In this Perspective we discuss the current status of tellurium-containing polymers in terms of their...

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