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The University of Sydney



ISSUE 21, 2012


I'm really excited about the changes planned for our second and third year teaching laboratories this summer. Our Level 4 (Inorganic chemistry) laboratories will be completely rebuilt to serve as a modern, integrated senior undergraduate laboratory. Level 5 will be similarly and simultaneously transformed into our new second year laboratories. These transformations are being led by our Second and Third Year Laboratory Coordinators, Chris Ling and Chris McErlean, but with substantial contributions from many members of our technical team. The scale of the renovations is daunting but the benefits to our students should be spectacular and enduring.
As if this project isn't challenging enough on its own, it is taking place amidst many other changes in the school and across the university. Many personnel changes are being forced upon us by budgetary constraints as well as other circumstances. Fortunately we've been able to appoint a bunch of outstanding new people across the board, lessening the impact of change.

A great opportunity afforded by the teaching laboratory consolidation is the freeing up of more of Level 3 for research space. Some laboratories and research group offices are being relocated from Levels 4 and 5, but for the first time in many years space will not be the limiting factor in the School's research planning.

I'll step down as Head of School early in 2013, and I must confess to looking forward to handing the reins over to Professor Kate Jolliffe. The job of Head of School can be satisfying, and I've particularly enjoyed getting to know and appreciate the strengths and talents of our (old and new) general staff members from all areas of the School's operations. I also value the willingness of academic staff to commit time to our collective activities of undergraduate teaching and research training. The administration and development work that keeps our programs fresh and effective only gets done because so many people contribute, and I'm acutely aware that this can be hard to prioritise when research beckons. But now I'm looking forward to a different research/teaching/administration balance, and to being more like somebody that I used to know.

Kind regards,
Greg Warr  |  Head of School |  School of Chemistry

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Toastracks and air-raid shelters
The third installment of Jim Eckert's fascinating history of the School of Chemistry and the University of Sydney. Read more here.
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Profile: Ms Lara Malins
"Meeting with a chemistry Nobel Laureate was just one of the many unique opportunities I had at this year's ICOS19 in Melbourne, Australia". Read more here.
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Study published in Science
"We did not set out to solve the long-standing question of why the atmosphere has twice as many acids produced by plants - that is organic acids - than scientists have previously been able to account for". Read more here.
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Breakthrough in solar cell efficiency
Low cost solar cells suitable for rooftop panels could reach a record-breaking 40 percent efficiency following an early stage breakthrough. Read more here.
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Profile: Mr David Flynn
ChemNEWS Editor, Professor Scott Kable talks to David Flynn about his Honours year. Read more here.
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Outstanding teaching award
Dr Siegbert Schmid recognised for outstanding teaching. Read more here.
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Two awards for Prof Max Crossley
Professor Max Crossley wins 2012 David Craig Medal for outstanding contributions to chemical research; and the Robert Burns Woodward Career Award. Read more here.
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Thank you!
The School would like to thank Alumni and Friends for their very generous donations over the years. View 2012 donors here.
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Open Day 2012
Check out the photos from the 2012 Open Day held Saturday, August 25. View photos here.
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NEW alumni facebook page

This Facebook page is for people who studied at the School of Chemistry, The University of Sydney. If you were an alumnus, please feel free to share information about yourselves, anecdotes about your time with us, or even arrange alumni events. We'll try to post things of interest to you all, but this Facebook page is mainly for you guys to reconnect with each other. Why not be the first to post something? Visit the Alumni Facebook page here.

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Check out what our staff, and especially our students, have been achieving during 2012. Please visit here.

Queen's birthday honours
University of Sydney alumni were strongly represented in the Queen's Birthday Honours this year with more than 70 alumni receiving recognition for their contribution to Australian life and humanity at large. Chemistry alumnus, Professor David Black, BSc 1959, MSc 1960 was one of them. AO for distinguished service in the area of organic and heterocyclic chemistry, through leadership roles within professional organisations, and as an educator and mentor.

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Upcoming seminars*
Wednesday, 3 October | 9am | Chemistry LT4
Prof Janusz Nowotny, University of Western Sydney, Australia
Friday, 5 October | 11am | Chemistry LT4
Professor Robert E. Continetti, University of California, USA
Wednesday, 10 October | 9am | Chemistry LT4
Professor Tim Clark, Friedrich-Alexander-Universit├Ąt, Germany
Friday, 12 October | 11am | Chemistry LT4
Professor Paul Bernhardt, University of Queensland, Australia
Wednesday, 17 October | 5.30pm |Eastern Ave Lecture Theatre
Professor Ed Solomon,Stanford University, USA
Friday, 19 October | 11am | Chemistry LT4
Professor Irene Yarovsky, RMIT University, Australia
Tuesday, 23 October | 3-4pm | Chemistry LT4
Professor Ed Solomon,Stanford University, USA
Wednesday, 24 October | 9am | Chemistry LT4
Professor Ed Solomon,Stanford University, USA
Thursday, 25 October | 5.30pm | Chemistry LT2
Professor Kris Matyjaszewski, Carnegie Mellon University, USA
Friday, 26 October | 11am | Chemistry LT4
Dr Milton Kiefel, Griffith University, Australia
Wednesday, 31 October | 9am | Chemistry LT4
Professor Derek Pratt, University of Ottawa, Canada
Friday, 2 November | 11am | Chemistry LT4
Professor Peter Daivis, RMIT University, Australia
Friday, 9 November | 11am | Chemistry LT4
Associate Professor Daniel Kosov, James Cook University
Wednesday, 14 November | 12pm | Chemistry LT4
Dr Ekaterina Pas, Monash University, Australia
Friday, 16 November | 11am | Chemistry LT4
Dr David Lupton, Monash University, Australia
Friday, 16 November | 2pm | Chemistry LT2
Dr Ilja K. Voets, Eindhoven University of Technology
Wednesday, 21 November | 9am | Chemistry LT4
Dr Peter Duggan, CSIRO, Australia
Friday, 23 November | 11am | Chemistry LT4
Dr David Huang, University of Adelaide, Australia
Friday, 30 November | 11am | Chemistry LT4
Dr Colin Jackson, Australian National University, Australia
Friday, 7 December | 11am | Chemistry LT2
Professor Brian Yates, University of Tasmania


Chemistry seminars are held throughout Semesters 1 and 2 on Wednesdays (9am in Chemistry Lecture Theatre 2) and Fridays (11am in Chemistry Lecture Theatre 4) unless otherwise stated. If you would like to be notified of these weekly seminars and other weekly chemistry news and events please email Anne Woods and she will add you to the electronic mailout. Alternatively you can visit Upcoming Seminars. Seminars are also advertised on our Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter pages.


To keep up-to-date with the latest news and events in the School of Chemistry visit ChemNEWS and EVENTS.


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Donations can be made to the following funds by using our online donation form.

To find out more about these funds please visit:

The School of Chemistry would like to take this opportunity to thank Alumni and Friends for their very generous donations. Your support continues to make a profound impact on our various programs. To view our current list a donors please click here.


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Chemistry news
In other news
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In profile, Chiara Neto discusses how through nanotechnology we can now try to mimic nature to solve some of the world's most pressing problems. Read more, including Chiara's bio, here.


Dr Jim Eckert returns with his fascinating articles on the history of the University, and in particular, the School of Chemistry. To read more please visit the School's History page.




Don't forget to post your own news on the new Chemistry Alumni Facebook. Our Facebook site is a great way to get in contact with fellow alumni and we'd love to hear about what you're doing now and about your time with us.



Copyright 2012 School of Chemistry, The University of Sydney, NSW 2006 Australia. Phone +61 2 9351 4504
ABN 15 211 513 464 CRICOS Number: 00026A

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