Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Pau will participate in the Science Summer School organised by the College of Science at NUIG. The Summer School is an annual activity promoted by the College to 5th year and Leaving Cert students will strong interest in Science. More information can be found here. Pau will give a talk titled "Life beyond fossil fuels: renewable energy for a better planet".

Monday, 29 August 2016

On 19 and 20 August 2015 the Great North Museum Hancock (https://greatnorthmuseum.org.uk/) hosted Light for Life (https://greatnorthmuseum.org.uk/whats-on/light-for-life), a public outreach activity illustrating how sunlight has been fundamental for the past, present and future development of humankind. This event was part of the initiatives within the UNESCO’s International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies (http://www.light2015.org/Home/Event-Programme/2015/Exhibition/UK-Light-for-Life.html). The exhibition brought together researchers from the School of Chemistry, and families visiting the museum, with the aim of explaining the science behind natural photosynthesis with the aid of visual experiments. Research on photochemistry and the development of solar technology inspired from plants will be presented with demonstrations for adults and children; including hands-on activities such as the chemical extraction of a natural pigment from greens. The event was jointly organised between the Great North Museum and the School of Chemistry thanks to the GNM Fellowship awarded to Dr Pau Farras.  

Monday, 29 August 2016

School of plays host to international Summer School The School of Chemistry organised a two week ‘Colourful Chemistry’ summer school for 10 students from Spain, focussing on the synthesis, characterisation and applications of dyes. From 27th of July to the 7th of August 2015, experiments and investigations took place in the School’s outreach laboratory and the physical chemistry teaching laboratory. The students were 17–18 years old, and will start university in September 2015 and 2016.The summer school was funded by the Spanish foundation “Fundació Catalunya – La Pedrera”, as part of their Youth and Science (http://jovesiciencia.cat/) program. Youth and Science is a three year program to promote science amongst 15–18 year old students from Catalonia. The summer school aims to introduce the students to photochemistry and the chemistry of dyes. The course has been organised in a series of lectures and laboratory demonstrations. The activities from this project were divided in three groups: (1) synthesis of dyes, (2) characterisation and study of the physico-chemical properties of dyes and (3) various applications of dyes. Activities included: Measurement of the solar spectrum. Synthesis of the organometallic dye ruthenium tris-bipyridine Ru(bpy)3 and the organic dye indigo blue. Purification of natural dyes by thin layer chromatography and column chromatography. UV-visible and luminescence spectroscopies of dyes. Structural characterisation of alizarin dye by 1H- and 13C-NMR, and IR spectroscopies. Detection of blood using luminol. Techniques for the detection of latent fingerprints (including dusting, cyanoacrylate fuming, iodine fuming and ninhydrin). Characterisation of chemosensors for the detection of metal ions and protons. * Use of dyes for flexible dye sensitised solar cells.