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Mixed Magnesium/Lithium Carba-Carba-Closo-Dodecaborate

Background: With the revolution of rechargeable technologies - especially the impact electrical vehicles are making - the current total battery demands of 70MWh is expected to reach 180,000MWh in 2025. Lithium (Li) is the most heavily used battery material and although it performs well, it is not earth abundant thus very expensive. The most recent alternative to Li rechargeable batteries is the Aluminum rechargeable battery that has optimal recharging properties but still has its limitations in carrying a high voltage.  Brief Description: UCR researchers have experimented with Magnesium (Mg) batteries and discovered a novel halide-free electrolyte mixture that enhances energy capacity and charge-discharge cycle stability. Most importantly, it can withstand an exceptional high voltage of 4.6V in comparison to 3.7V found in Li batteries. The electrolyte materials they have synthesized could potentially increase the power per charge by a 3-fold. Use of Mg will not only improve such electrochemical stability but its earth-abundance will prove it to be a cost-efficient option.

A Rechargeable Battery With Aluminum Negative Electrode And Chevrel Phase Molybdenum Sulfide Positive Electrode

Background: Lithium-ion batteries are the current poster-child for energy storage and grid applications, capturing a decent portion of the $74B global battery market. However, lithium has limited long-term utility and a heavily inflated price at $40 per pound. With the US being the 2nd largest energy consumers and its battery market growing annually at 8%, there is a high demand for a more dependable, robust and cost-effective rendition of battery technology.  Brief Description: Aluminum (Al) is a more abundant and cheaper alternative at only $0.85 per pound. UCR researchers have developed a rechargeable aluminum battery prototype comprised of novel intercalating cathode and electrolyte solution formulas. High intercalation (reversibility) allows the battery to recharge but existing rechargeable Al batteries have been unable to reach optimum reversibility nor maintain favorable energy densities. This enhanced prototype significantly improves energy capacity and charge-discharge cycle stability as well.

Oxidative CH Activation of Non-Activated Alkanes Using Metal-Organic Frameworks (MOFs) As Catalysts

UCLA researchers in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry have developed two novel organic framework-based catalysts used in CH activation during the process of converting methane into acetic acid. These catalysts demonstrate high efficiency and specificity, combined with the great chemical stability and reproducibility seen with organic framework materials.

Design and Synthesis of New Metal-Organic Frameworks with Unique Topologies

UCLA researchers in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry have developed a series of Metal-Organic Frameworks (MOF) with unique topologies, structures, and pore sizes, thereby, making these materials more versatile in applications such as gas storage and separation.

Catalytic Coupling Reactions Using Frameworks with Open-Metal-Sites

UCLA researchers in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry have developed a group of novel organic framework-based catalysts used in coupling reactions. These catalysts demonstrate high efficiency and specificity, combined with the great chemical stability and reproducibility seen with organic framework materials.

Reversible Ethylene Oxide Capture In Metal Organic Frameworks (Mofs)

UCLA researchers in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry have devised a method to separate and purify gases such as ethylene oxide from gaseous mixtures using functionalized and porous metal-organic, covalent-organic, and zeolitic-imidazolate frameworks.

Reversible Hydrogen Storage using Metal-Organic Frameworks (MOFs)

UCLA researchers in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry have demonstrated the ability of functionalized zeolitic imidazolate frameworks (ZIFs) and covalent organic frameworks (COFs) to store significant amounts of hydrogen gas in a safe and practical manner, with ten-fold greater storage capacity compared to other methods.

Adsorptive Gas Separation Of Carbon Dioxide From Methane By Zeolitic Imidazolate Frameworks (Zifs)

UCLA researchers in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry have demonstrated the ability of functionalized zeolitic imidazolate frameworks (ZIFs) to be used in gas separation processes, thereby having industrial applications in natural gas purification and landfill gas separation. 

Development Of Pheromone Assisted Techniques To Improve Efficacy Of Insecticide Sprays Targeting Urban Pest Ant Species

Background: Pheromones are chemical secretions that dictate behavior in many social insects such as ants, bees and termites. They use them for various pivotal roles in foraging, nest relocation, defense and reproduction. Implementation of pheromone trails that lead urban pests to their imminent doom is a very notable, strategic approach. Current pest management programs are in need of better synthetic pheromone formulations for a more effective and species-specific utilization.   Brief Description: UCR Researchers have developed a novel synthetic pheromone compound and management system that lures targeted ant species to an insecticide-treated area. This pheromone-assisted technique will maximize the efficacy of insecticide sprays by reducing insecticide contact in the environment while increasing exposure of ants for eradication.  

Novel compounds for the treatment of fungal infections

Treatment of fungal infections remains a medical challenge and better and more efficacious treatments are needed. Antifungal agents provide relief from fungal infections that can potentially infect almost any part of the human body, but, systemic fungal infections can be life threatening. A commonly prescribed antifungal drug for systemic fungal infections is fluconazole. Fluconazole tends to be well tolerated; however there have been reports of various undesirable side effects as well as the emergence of fluconazole resistant fungal strains.

One-step method of synthesizing formic acid from carbon dioxide utilizing iron-based electrocatalyst

Researchers at the University of California, Davis have developed a one-step method of synthesizing formic acid.

An Ultra-Sensitive Method for Detecting Molecules

To-date, plasmon detection methods have been utilized in the life sciences, electrochemistry, chemical vapor detection, and food safety. While passive surface plasmon resonators have lead to high-sensitivity detection in real time without further contaminating the environment with labels. Unfortunately, because these systems are passively excited, they are intrinsically limited by a loss of metal, which leads to decreased sensitivity. Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley have developed a novel method to detect distinct molecules in air under normal conditions to achieve sub-parts per billion detection limits, the lowest limit reported. This device can be used detecting a wide array of molecules including explosives or bio molecular diagnostics utilizing the first instance of active plasmon sensor, free of metal losses and operating deep below the diffraction limit for visible light.  This novel detection method has been shown to have superior performance than monitoring the wavelength shift, which is widely used in passive surface plasmon sensors. 

Long Wavelength Voltage Sensitive Dyes

Rapid changes in the membrane potential of neurons and cardiomyocytes are used to define cellular signaling and cell physiological profiles. The classical means to monitor membrane potentials is patch clamp electrophysiology, a low-throughput and highly invasive technique. One current alternative is to use Ca2+ imaging, as the agents are robust and sensitive, come in a variety of colors, and can be used in a wide range of biological contexts. Ca2+ imaging, however, allows only an imperfect approximation of membrane potential changes, and fast-spiking neuronal events are difficult to detect.   Fluorescent voltage sensors can achieve fast, sensitive, and non-disruptive direct readouts of membrane potentials. UC Berkeley researchers have designed and synthesized a new fluorophore called ‘Berkeley Red’ that can be used in the context of voltage-sensing scaffolds to generate fluorescent voltage sensors.  

Methods for Fabrication of Electric Propulsion Tips

The technology is a method for fabrication of silicon microfabricated emitter tips.This process has two-step etching process which utilizes field emission electric propulsion (FEEP) and indium propellant.

Durable, Plasticization-Resistant Membranes using Metal-Organic Frameworks

Over the last several decades, polymer membranes have shown promise for purifying various industrial gas mixtures. However, there are a number of potential applications in which highly polarizable gases (e.g., CO2, C3H6, C3H8, butenes, etc.) diminish membrane selectivities through the mechanism of plasticization. Plasticization is the swelling of polymer films in the presence of certain penetrants that results in increased permeation rates of all gases, but an unwanted, and often times, unpredictable loss in membrane efficiency. Current strategies for reducing plasticization effects often result in a reduction in membrane permeability. To address the need for plasticization-resistant membranes that retain good separation performance, researchers at UC Berkeley have developed a novel method for improving polymer membrane stability and performance upon the incorporation of metal-organic frameworks (MOFs). This method can be applied to a broad range of commercially available polymers as well as enable new polymers to be commercialized.

Process for the Fabrication of Nanostrucured Arrays on Flexible Polymer Films

The technology is a process for making arrays of nanostructures on polymer films.It features a two step process for creating thin polymer films with unique optical and wetting properties that can be used for coating both planar and curved surfaces.It is possible to implement this process in a mass fabrication process over large areas.

Efficient, one-step, scalable synthesis of succinic acid from renewable biomass-derived levulinic acid

The invention details a chemical-catalytic method of synthesizing commercially important succinic acid (SA) from biomass derived levulinic acid (LA). The method uses inexpensive starting material, a recyclable solvent-catalyst and mild conditions while providing good yields. It is a practical, scalable method for commercial production of SA.

Efficient conversion of biomass-derived levulinic acid to 3-hydroxypropanoic acid

Researchers at the University of California, Davis have developed a novel method to efficiently produce highly refined HPA from renewable sources.

A Non-Natural Linker for the Synthesis of Pure, Constrained Tricyclic Peptides

UCLA researchers have developed a novel non-natural linker as the scaffold for the synthesis of pure, single-regioisomer-product of tricyclic peptides, which greatly enhances the efficiency of peptide modification and their pharmaceutical value.

Catalytic Synthesis Of Fluorinated Anilines

Molecules containing aniline and aniline derivatives are common in the pharmaceutical, agrochemical, and pigment industries and numerous methods for the preparation of anilines have been reported.  Aniline derivatives containing electron-withdrawing substituents are more valuable in medicinal chemistry because anilines are prone to oxidation.  The past methods to obtain fluorinated anilines, which also mitigate oxidation, have been limited and the yields were moderate.   UC Berkeley researchers have developed a reaction for the coupling of primary fluoroalkylamines with aryl bromides and aryl chlorides and occur in the presence of functional groups that are typically not tolerated by C-N coupling reactions. The reaction yield is high and can be conducted with low catalyst loadings for most substrates.  

Small Molecule Inhibitors Targeting Digestive System Enzymes to Control Obesity and Type II Diabetes

Researchers in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry have identified a compound that can block the enzyme that converts “hunger hormone” precursors to active hormones.

Polypeptide-Based Vehicles for Intracellular Drug Delivery and Method of Generation

UCLA researchers in the Departments of Chemistry, Physics, and Bioengineering have developed a portfolio of polypeptide-based drug delivery systems and the processes for their generation. These delivery vehicles include polymeric vesicles, stabilized double emulsions, hydrogels, and new cell penetrating peptide (CPP) tags. These materials have applications toward pharmaceuticals, drug delivery, cosmetics, and personal care products.

Novel Quantum Dot Field-Effect Transistors Free of the Bias-Stress Effect

Novel quantum dot field-effect transistors without bias-stress effect that also have high mobility and are environmentally stable.

Coating Or Polish Removable By An Aqueous Solution Of Cysteine

The invention described is a nail polish base coat that can be dissolved using an aqueous solution of cysteine. Current nail polishes and base coats are removed using a combination of vigorous scrubbing and soaks in harsh chemicals such as ethyl acetate or acetone for long periods of time. The polymer described in this invention would eliminate exposure to harsh chemicals and vigorous scrubbing. Therefore making the process of nail polish removal more comfortable and healthier nails for frequent nail polish users.

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