In the news

Quantum Mechanics Identifies Link Between CO2 Recycling Catalysts and Bimolecular Enzymes

  • By Aude Marjolin
  • 22 January 2015

Researchers at PQI have identified a promising design principle for renewable energy catalysts. Utilizing advanced computational modeling, researchers found that chemicals commonly found in laboratories may play a similar role as biological catalysts that nature uses for efficient energy storage.

The article, "Thermodynamic Descriptors for Molecules That Catalyze Efficient CO  Electroreductions" published in the journal ACS Catalysis, was authored by PQI faculty John A. Keith, PhD, and Aude Marjolin, PhD, a postdoctoral fellow.

Pitt and CMU to Explore Library Collaboration

  • By Workstudy User
  • 12 January 2015

Pitt and Carnegie Mellon University announced Dec. 2 that the two institutions’ library systems would “conduct a thorough review of options for collaboration” and “seek input from faculty, staff, students and other stakeholders from our two universities, the city and the region.” During the review, which will result in a preliminary report in March and a final assessment in June, the search to replace University Library System head Rush Miller upon his Dec. 31 retirement will be suspended temporarily. CMU also has placed on hold its search for a director of collections and information access services for its libraries.

 

New Discovery Could Pave the Way for Spin-based Computing

  • By Workstudy User
  • 25 December 2014

Electricity and magnetism rule our digital world. Semiconductors process electrical information, while magnetic materials enable long-term data storage. A research team led by PQI faculty Jeremy Levy has discovered a way to fuse these two distinct properties in a single material, paving the way for new ultrahigh density storage and computing architectures.

Levy and colleagues published their work in Nature Communications, elucidating their discovery of a form of magnetism that can be stabilized with electric fields rather than magnetic fields.

Conserving a Valuable Resource: System Will Recover Helium for Physics Lab Use

  • By Workstudy User
  • 17 September 2014

Pitt’s new physics department helium recovery system will put the campus at the forefront of U.S. university efforts to conserve the finite supply of this increasingly expensive laboratory gas.

With U.S. helium reserves being sold off and prices rising, Pitt has used the National Institute of Standards and Technology-funded renovation of mid-campus physics buildings, undertaken over the past five years, as an opportunity to install a new helium recovery system. It should be able to reliquefy at least 90 percent of the gas currently used and allow for experiments that might not otherwise have been affordable, says Patrick Irvin, faculty member in the Department of Physics and Astronomy.

Ken Jordan Featured in the Journal of Physical Chemistry

  • By Workstudy User
  • 11 September 2014

PQI faculty Ken Jordan was featured in the September 4th, 2014 issue of the Journal of Physical Chemistry A. 

This issue was dedicated to Ken Jordan on the occasion of his 66th birthday. The preface “From Quantum Mechanics to Molecular Mechanics: A Tribute to Kenneth D. Jordan” was written by his friend and fellow scientist Jack Simmons, former graduate student Feng Wang, and his longtime collaborator Mark Johnson. This special issue “The Kenneth D. Jordan Estschrift" includes his autobiography, a list of his colleagues and publications, and his Curriculum Vitae.

Hrvoje Petek Part of $20 Million Grant to Observe Molecules in Action

  • By Workstudy User
  • 28 August 2014

The UC Irvine Center for Chemistry at the Space-Time Limit has received a $20 million renewal award from the National Science Foundation to continue its groundbreaking work in pushing the limits of interrogating chemistry on ultrafast and ultrasmall scales. Ultimately, the goal is capture chemistry in the act on the single-molecule level.

Headed by V. Ara Apkarian of UCI’s Department of Chemistry, CaSTL is one of eight NSF-funded “Centers for Chemical Innovation” that are designed to tackle grand challenges in the field. A team of 12 faculty members from five different universities and nearly 60 researchers have joined CaSTL to build the “Chemiscope” – the chemist’s microscope – designed to visualize chemical transformations on atomic scales and in real time.

Quantum Engineering Research Paper on “Transparent Electrodes” One of Top 20 Downloads from the Journal Nano Letters

  • By Aude Marjolin
  • 8 May 2014

A journal article by PQI researchers investigating the properties of copper nanomeshes to form transparent electrodes was one of the Top 20 articles downloaded from the journal Nano Letters web site in April 2014. 

The team is led by principle investigator and PQI faculty Paul W. Leu, PhD, and Co-PIs include PQI faculty Jung-Kun Lee, PhD, and research assistants Bo Ding, Tongchuan Gao, and Baomin Wang. The article, "Uniform and Ordered Copper Nanomeshes by Microsphere Lithography for Transparent Electrodes," was published in Nano Letters.

Patrick D. Gallagher Named Chancellor-Elect of Pitt

  • By Workstudy User
  • 11 February 2014

Patrick Gallagher, Acting Deputy Secretary of the US Department of Commerce and Director of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has been named the next Chancellor of the University of Pittsburgh. Gallagher, who received his Ph.D. in Physics at the University of Pittsburgh, will succeed Mark A. Nordenberg, who served as Chancellor for the last 19 years.

For more details, read the Pitt press release, and read here about the impact Gallagher had as Director of NIST.

Jeremy Levy Co-Edits October 2013 Issue of MRS Bulletin Dedicated to Quantum Computing

  • By Workstudy User
  • 2 December 2013

Materials Issues for Quantum Computation: The new field of quantum computing uses qubits (quantum bits) in place of classical bits to carry out certain types of computation. Physical systems that act as qubits encompass a wide range of technologies, from ions, to local defect states in crystals, and on to microelectronic devices addressable with wire interconnects. Materials issues arise in all of these, and this issue of MRS Bulletin describes how materials challenges and opportunities arise and have been used to make qubit-based quantum circuits using very different materials systems.

Semiconductor Nanocrosses Lay Foundations for Topological Quantum Bits

  • By Workstudy User
  • 17 October 2013

PQI faculty Sergey Frolov co-authors a paper in Nature Nanotechnology on the growth and characterization of high quality semiconductor nanocross structures. These structures are the building blocks for topological quantum bits based on recently discovered Majorana fermions.

These tests should make clear whether or not Majorana’s (and the nanowires that house them) are a suitable base for the so-called topological quantum computer.

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