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News Archive - 2016

Members of the Liu group have been highlight by ACS Chemical & Engineering News!

Congratulations to graduate students Zijie Wang and Shuaishuai Huang of the Liu group. Their recent paper in Angewandte Chemie International Edition has been highlighted by the ACS Chemical & Engineering News.  This paper describes how to graft a single polymer in one reaction step unto fibres of cotton fabrics to yield a filter that not only breaks emulsions but also separates de-emulsified oil from water. Read more.

The Consul General of Germany visits the Department of Chemistry

Dr. Loock meeting with Consul General of GermanyPeter Fahrenholtz, the Consul General of Germany, visited several labs in the Department of Chemistry on November 3rd. He learned about our research from students in the groups of Jessop, Jerkiewicz, Oleschuk and Loock.





Cathleen Crudden is on the team of Associate Editors for ACS Catalysis

ACS Catalysis Twitter screen-grabCathleen Crudden has recently been named one of the Associate Editors for ACS Catalysis. This is a very well recognized ACS journal with an impact factor approaching 10. She will be handling organometallic and organically relevant catalysis in this role.



Meredith Richards wins the New Procurement System Naming Contest

Meredith Richards wins the New Procurement System Naming ContestCongratulations to Meredith Richards who was presented with an IPad Mini from Andy Green the Director of Strategic Procurement Services. The name for the new procurement system is acQuire submitted by Meredith.

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An Announcement from the Royal Society of Chemistry

Green Chemistry ArticleThe Royal Society of Chemistry has announced that the new Chair of the Editorial Board for the journal Green Chemistry, starting in January, will be Philip Jessop.

Link to Article

Article (PDF, 422 KB)



Federal government asks Dr. Philip Jessop for help

Dr. Philip JessopInnovation, Science and Economic Development Canada and the Council of Canadian Academies have named a panel, including Dr. Philip Jessop, to assess the current state of science and technology and industrial R&D in Canada.  The panel will prepare a report, over the next year, documenting Canada’s science & tech and R&D strengths, weaknesses, and trends.



2016 Nobel Prize in Chemistry

Sir Fraser StoddartSir Fraser Stoddart, who is the 2016 Nobel Prize winner in Chemistry, has been a NRC Postdoctoral Fellow in the Queen’s Chemistry Department from 1967-1970. During this time he was in the group of Prof. J.K. Jones, but was effectively supervised by Walter Szarek, who had been hired only a year earlier. It was Walter Szarek who directed Stoddart’s research interests from carbohydrate chemistry (Jones’ work) to the, then new, area of macrocycle synthesis and chemistry. As Walter said: “… and the rest is history…” [The photo shows Szarek and Stoddart in 1979]


The 2016 Nobel Prize in Chemistry has a Queen's Connection!

Nobel Prize in ChemistryThe 2016 Nobel Prize in Chemistry has been awarded to three scientists who have advanced the design of nanomachines, molecular motors, supramolecular chemistry, and molecular actuators. Jean-Pierre Sauvage, 71, of the University of Strasbourg in France, and Professor Sir J. Fraser Stoddart, 74, (Northwestern University) split one half of this year’s chemistry prize. The other half has been awarded to Bernard Feringa, 65, of the University of Groningen in the Netherlands.

One of the 2016 Nobel Laureates winners, Dr. Stoddart, was in our Department at Queen’s University from 1967-1970 while he was an NRC Postdoctoral Fellow, after completing his Ph.D. at Edinburgh University in Scotland. Both, Bernard Feringa and Sir Fraser Stoddart visited our department, recently. Feringa delivered the 2010 McRae lecture and Stoddart gave the 2012 Jones lecture.

Dr. Victor Snieckus was recently quoted in a C&EN News article “Chemists introduce a user’s guide for palladium acetate” by Stephan K. Ritter

Dr. Victor Snieckus“Chemists today don’t make catalysts—they buy, open the bottle, and let the genie do its magic.” observes veteran organic chemist Victor Snieckus of Queen’s University, in Ontario. He added that the reported findings won’t be measured by any citation index “but will be evidenced in the future literature of new palladium-catalyzed organic reactions".



Dr. P. Andrew Evans receives a 2017 Arthur C. Cope Scholar Award from the American Chemical Society

Dr. Andrew EvansDr. P. Andrew Evans, Bader Chair in Organic Chemistry and a Tier 1 CRC has been selected for a 2017 Arthur C. Cope Mid Career Scholar Award for his seminal contributions to the development and mechanistic understanding of metal-catalyzed organic reactions and their implementation as key steps in the expeditious total synthesis of a complex bioactive natural products. For a list of the 2017 ACS Award winners, read more. For details of the award and past recipients,  read more. For more information about Dr. Evans, read more.



Graduate Supervision Award Fall Convocation

Dr. Stan Brown receives the Graduate Supervision AwardStan Brown, receives the Graduate Supervision Award during Fall Convocation

From left are: Principal Daniel Woolf; Chancellor Jim Leech; Rector Cam Yung; and Brenda Brouwer. Vice Provost and Dean of the School of Graduate Studies. (Photo by Lars Hagberg)



The Crudden and Horton groups are featured in Nature Communications

Single molecule-thick coatings enabled by simple, stable molecular precursorThe Crudden and Horton groups have just published a paper in Nature Communications describing a new bench stable organic compound that can be used to prepare NHC films on gold.

Read More.

C.M. Crudden*, J.H. Horton*, M.R. Narouz, Z. Li, C.A. Smith, K. Munro, C.J. Baddeley, C.R. Larrea, B. Drevniok, B. Thanabalasingam, A.B. McLean, O.V. Zenkina, I.I. Ebralidze, Z. She, H.-B. Kraatz, N.J. Mosey, L.N. Saunders, A. Yagi,  "Bio-sensing with robust, readily formed, self-assembled carbene monolayers on gold"

Dr. Stan Brown is awarded Queen’s University 2016 Award for Excellence in Graduate Student Supervision

Dr. Stan BrownCongratulations to Dr. Stan Brown for receiving the Queen’s University 2016 Award for Excellence in Graduate Student Supervision.  The award is unique because the nomination for the award is made by former and current graduate students.




The Boron in the Americas(BORAM XV) conference June 25th to June 28th in Chernoff Hall

The Department of Chemistry successfully hosted the Boron in the Americas (BORAM XV) conference from June 25th to June 28th at Chernoff Hall and the Chernoff Auditorium.

Boron in the Americas (BORAM XV)The biannual BORAM meeting has a history of 30 years and was traditionally held in the United States. The 2016 BORAM is the first one held in Canada with Professor Suning Wang as the organizer, Professor Cathleen Crudden and Professor Victor Snieckus as co-organizers. The BORAM meeting provides a forum for scientists whose research interests involve boron and its compounds to communicate as well as cross-fertilize their discoveries and ideas in boron-related chemistry. BORAM also grants students and postdoctoral researchers the opportunity to discuss their work with faculty and industrial representatives.

The 2016 BORAM meeting was attended by more than 150 participants from different regions of the world including Canada, USA, Germany, UK, France, Japan, China, India, Korea and Mexico, and nearly two thirds of them were students and postdoctoral fellows, making it the biggest BORAM meeting ever! 57 oral and 55 poster presentations were given at the meeting, focusing on the relationship of structures/bonding and reactivity of boron compounds, new synthetic methodologies based on organoboron compounds, and the applications of boron-containing molecules or polymers in catalysis,  new advanced materials such as boron-doped graphenes, organic light emitting diodes, organic solar cells, bio-imaging, sensors, medicines and other topics.

The participants enjoyed immensely the high quality presentations given at the meeting, the interactions with top scientists in Boron research, the Thousand Islands boat cruise, the beautiful Queen’s University campus and all that downtown Kingston has to offer. All in all, it is a hugely successful meeting!

Jesse Vanderveen from the Jessop group receives the Kenneth G. Hancock Memorial Award

Jesse Vanderveen, PhD Student received the Kenneth G. Hancock Memorial AwardPhD student Jesse Vanderveen (Jessop group) has received the Kenneth G. Hancock Memorial Award from the American Chemical Society. The award provides recognition for outstanding student contributions to furthering the goals of green chemistry through research or studies. Two awards are given per year, typically one for an undergraduate student and one for a graduate student anywhere in the world. Jesse’s work has been about the physical chemistry and applications of switchable-hydrophilicity solvents.


Dr. Carrington’s group calculates ro-vibrational levels of CH5+

Dr. Tucker CarringtonFor most molecules, it is possible to decompose the internal motion of the nuclei into rotations and vibrations. In the case of CH5+, things are not so simple. The rapid shuffling of hydrogens every which way about the central carbon causes inextricable mixing of rotations and vibrations and greatly complicates assignment of the dense spectrum. Wang and Carrington have reported theoretical calculations of rotational energy levels. They propose an assignment that differs from that of a recent experiment. The experimentalists assumed that they saw molecules of just one parity. The new assignment can only be correct if molecules of both parties exist in the experiment.  This work was highlighted in articles published in Science, on the web site of the American Institute of Physics, on the website EurekAlert! of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, on the website, and on the website

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Liu Group highlighted in Nature Nanotechnology

Block cop-polymer encapsulated air nanobubblesUnder the supervision of Prof. Guojun Liu, PhD student Yu Wang’s research on block copolymer encapsulated air nanobubbles was highlighted by Nature Nanotechnology.

Read more.



Dr. Jean-Michel Nunzi co-organizes international symposium" Planning the cities of tomorrow today"

Dr. Jean-Michel NunziDr. Jean-Michel Nunzi of the Department of Chemistry and Physics and a Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Photonics for Life, co-organizes a symposium titled Planning the Cities of Tomorrow Today. The primary goal of the symposium is fostering exchange between researchers, students, and industry and institutional representatives on energy issues and sustainable cities.

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Congratulations to Dr. Kevin Stamplecoskie

Dr. StamplecoskieKevin Stamplecoskie, an Assistant Professor in the Chemistry Department, has been awarded grants from the Canadian Foundation for Innovation and Ministry of Research and Innovation with a total value of $260,000. The award will be used to purchase an ultrafast laser system, used to investigate the interaction of light with novel materials. The group will be equipped with the tools to determine the excited state properties of unique photonic materials, and gain important information like how materials can use the energy absorbed from light in applications like solar cells and advanced optics. Please click here to view the Queen's announcement. Please click here to view the Ministry announcement.

Reprogramming the assembly of unmodified DNA with a small moleculeSoren Mellerup, PhD Student

Congratulations to Soren Mellerup, a Ph.D. student in Suning Wang’s group who has been granted the prestigious Vanier CGS award.

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Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne, MPP Sophie Kiwala and Mayor Bryan Patterson visit Nonofabrication Laboratory

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne, MPP Sophie Kiwala and Mayor Bryan Patterson visit Nonofabrication LaboratoryDr. Richard Oleschuk (Chemistry) and Dr. Rob Knobel (Physics) welcomed Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne, MPP Sophie Kiwala and Mayor Bryan Patterson for a Lab Tour at the Kingston Nonofabrication Laboratory. March 31st, 2016.




Reprogramming the assembly of unmodified DNA with a small moleculeDr. Petitjean and collaborators unravel new ways to control DNA assembly

Nicole Avakyan, Andrea A. Greschner, Faisal Aldaye, Christopher J. Serpell, Violeta Toader, Anne Petitjean & Hanadi F. Sleiman

Nature Chemistry 2016, in press

Petitjean group and collaborators unravel new ways to control DNA assembly


Mike Baird has been awarded the 2015 McMaster University Distinguished Alumni Award

Dr. Baird receiving McMaster University Distinguished Alumni AwardDr. Michael Baird graduated from McMaster in 1962 as the senior class president and as one of the top university sprinters in the country. In fact, he was inducted into the McMaster Athletics Hall of Fame in 1997. Dr. Baird is now an emeritus professor in the Department of Chemistry at Queen’s University where he has served on faculty since 1967 and continues to carry out externally funded research. During his time at Queen’s, he has built an international reputation for his research in organometallic chemistry, his contributions to the field including the development of novel protocols for synthesizing and studying many of the thermally unstable compounds involved in his research along with making significant advances in the study of catalysts which are important to the chemical, petrochemical and pharmaceutical industries.

With more than 250 peer-reviewed publications and ten patents, Dr. Baird has received many significant awards including the Catalysis Lecture Award of the Canadian Catalysis Foundation and the Catalysis Award and the Alcan Lecture Award from the Chemical Institute of Canada, which also elected him a Fellow of the Institute. He has received the Queen’s University Prize for Excellence in Research, and was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 2003. Dr. Baird has served his profession as a member of several NSERC committees and as a member of the editorial boards of the Canadian Journal of Chemistry, Organometallics and Inorganic Chemistry Communications.

More than simply an outstanding researcher, Dr. Baird is also a decorated teacher who won the Chemistry Department Student Council Prize for Excellence in Teaching a record five times at Queen’s. He also coached the Queen’s track team and was one of the inaugural inductees into the Queen’s Athletics Coaches Hall of Fame in 2003.


The "O" Lab and Their Collaborators at COPL have Published Ground Breaking Analytical Chemistry Work in Scientific Reports

See Scientific Reports articleScientific Reports ArticleThe Oleschuk Group





Suning Wang's former Ph.D. student was visited by the Minister of Science

Minister of Science, Kirsty Duncan views Dr. Wang's labSuning Wang's former Ph.D. student Zac Hudson, now an Assistant Professor has been awarded a Tier 2 CRC in Sustainable Chemistry for his work on efficient lighting technologies. Minister of Science Kirsty Duncan and Parliamentary Secretary for Science Terry Beech were on hand for the announcement.

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Congratulations to Dr. Gregory Jerkiewicz and his research team on receiving $4-million Discovery Frontiers grant from NSERC on Friday Jan. 8th. 2016

Dr. Jerkiewicz and Team received a $4-million grantGregory Jerkiewicz and his team received $4-million grant from Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) for a research project based at Queen’s University, focused on developing new clean energy technologies.  Gregory Jerkiewicz (Chemistry), the project lead; Member of Parliament Mark Gerretsen; NSERC President Mario Pinto; Minister of Science Kirsty Duncan; Principal Daniel Woolf; and Vice-Principal (Research) Steven Liss and partners and members of the Queen’s community attended the event.

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