Evaluating Procedures for Cleaning Birds and Other Wildlife Affected by Oil Spills
DATE: January 2019
Chapman University | Chemistry and Biochemistry
Allegra Liberman-Martin, Assistant Professor

Undergraduate students at Chapman University working with Prof. Allegra Liberman-Martin will use gastight Hamilton syringes to perform air-sensitive chemistry research. Students participating in an independent research course and the Advanced Organic Synthesis Laboratory course gain skills in air-free chemistry techniques as preparation for their future graduate studies or careers in chemical industry. Use of Hamilton gastight syringes is important for ensuring the safe transfer of air-sensitive reagents during our experiments.

Through my teaching and research at Chapman University, I aim to train young scientists by guiding undergraduate students to become fluent in chemistry and empowering undergraduate researchers to make new scientific discoveries. As a part of this goal, I offer students authentic research experiences as a part of their undergraduate curriculum through both a Student-Faculty Research course (CHEM 291/491) and an Advanced Organic Synthesis Laboratory course (CHEM 432), in which students synthesize new catalysts for sustainable organic and polymer chemistry. A Hamilton Syringe Grant would provide Chapman undergraduate students with gastight syringes to safely perform their synthetic chemistry research projects.

My research program focuses on the synthesis of new silicon and phosphorus compounds that can perform catalytic reactions that are typically associated with transition metals. We are motivated by the goal of creating catalysts that feature elements that are earth abundant, non-toxic, and inexpensive. Chapman undergraduate students participate in interdisciplinary projects that incorporate techniques from organic, inorganic, polymer, and “green” chemistry. Many of the silicon and phosphorus catalysts that students prepare are air sensitive, and I offer students one-on-one training in air-free synthesis techniques and laboratory safety.

Hamilton gastight syringes are ideal for handling air-sensitive liquids, and receiving the Hamilton Syringe Grant would provide the gastight syringes for 4–10 undergraduates to perform synthetic chemistry research in my laboratory courses at Chapman University. Undergraduate student researchers will use Hamilton gastight syringes to first synthesize new air-sensitive silicon and phosphorus compounds and then to evaluate their ability to catalyze the reduction of organic molecules or the formation of biodegradable polymers.

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