Southern Nazarene University, Oklahoma State University Receive Research Grant

Article excerpt

Southern Nazarene University and Oklahoma State University are investigating the possibility of using sunlight as a way of enriching the energy content of biofuel.

The research, conducted by Lisa Crow of SNU, and Jimmie Weaver of OSU, will take place this summer at OSU's Chemistry Department in Stillwater. Funding for this project was obtained through an Oklahoma EPSCoR ROA grant with the National Science Foundation.

Though this grant is specifically for summer research, Crow and Weaver envision the project as having far-reaching effects. Ideally, this summer will produce preliminary results that will lead to a full-blown project eligible for a federal grant. The project also will offer invaluable ongoing research opportunities for SNU undergraduates.

According to Weaver, the primary goal for this summer is to develop a method for the conversion of acrylate esters into cyclobutanes. The question at the heart of this research is whether the professors can develop a chemical reaction that stores photochemical energy similar to that of conversion of carbon dioxide into sugars in plants.

Developing sustainable energy solutions is likely to be one of the greatest challenges of the new century, and the marriage of photoenergy harvesting and bioenergy has not been investigated. …


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