Projects: Projects for Investigator
Reference Number EP/C528638/1
Title Pilot Studies of High-Risk, High-Gain Research Ideas
Status Completed
Energy Categories Not Energy Related 80%;
Hydrogen and Fuel Cells(Hydrogen, Hydrogen storage) 20%;
Research Types Basic and strategic applied research 100%
Science and Technology Fields PHYSICAL SCIENCES AND MATHEMATICS (Chemistry) 100%
UKERC Cross Cutting Characterisation Not Cross-cutting 100%
Principal Investigator Professor KDM Harris
No email address given
Cardiff University
Award Type Standard
Funding Source EPSRC
Start Date 17 October 2005
End Date 16 October 2007
Duration 24 months
Total Grant Value £60,000
Industrial Sectors No relevance to Underpinning Sectors
Region Wales
Programme Physical Sciences
Investigators Principal Investigator Professor KDM Harris , Chemistry, Cardiff University (99.992%)
  Other Investigator Professor GJ Hutchings , Chemistry, Cardiff University (0.001%)
Professor N McKeown , Chemistry, Cardiff University (0.001%)
Dr DM Murphy , Chemistry, Cardiff University (0.001%)
Dr DJ Willock , Chemistry, Cardiff University (0.001%)
Dr A Dervisi , Chemistry, Cardiff University (0.001%)
Professor K J Cavell , Chemistry, Cardiff University (0.001%)
Dr M Coogan , Chemistry, Cardiff University (0.001%)
Dr I Fallis , Chemistry, Cardiff University (0.001%)
Web Site
Abstract Project 1: Given that the oil reserves on Earth will one day run out, scientists are looking towards alternative fuels to replace our dependence on oil, and there is currently much interest in the development of hydrogen-based fuel systems. However, one of the major obstacles to the development of the use of hydrogen for motor fuel is the lack of a safe method of storing hydrogen onboard a vehicle. We propose to make a new type of material based on polymers which we believe will be able to store large quantities of hydrogen safely, both because these materials have large spaces to accommodate hydrogen molecules and because of the ability of these materials to interact strongly with hydrogen molecules.Project 2: Many important molecules are chiral, which means that they exist in two different forms - a right-handed form and a left-handed form. Very often, a sample of such molecules is a mixture (a racemic mixture) comprising equal amount of the right-handed and left-handed forms. For many applications of such molecules, it is important to be able to separate a racemic mixture of this type into separate samples comprising only right-handed molecules and only left-handed molecules. The proposed research will explore a new idea for carrying out such separations, by carrying out crystallization experiments from racemic mixtures in solution under irradiation by a form of radiation (circularly polarized radiation) that itself exists in either a right-handed or left-handed form.Project 3: The chemical reactivity and properties of molecules often depend critically on their shape or structure. For example, molecular shapes govern everything from colour, odour and taste to whether a substance is a solid, liquid or gas. Scientists use different tools to study these shapes, and thereby explore how one molecule will react with another depending on its shape. Quite often this is very hard to achieve, particularly when the molecules are in solution and when their interactions with other molecules are very weak. In this project, we will develop a new tool that allows us to generate a 3dimensional visualisation of molecules in solution, revealing the very small changes in structure that occur when chiral molecules weakly interact with each other.Project 4: Up until now, the design of N-heterocyclic carbenes as ligands in catalysis has principally concentrated on the manipulation of R-groups attached to the heterocyclic ring - an unimaginative approach to a complex problem. The idea here is a step-out in concept. The intention is to build expanded ring systems in which ring buckling and interactions between substituents on the ring control structure and reactivity, and hence provide unique opportunities for catalyst design. Project 5: Alcohols are used as key chemical intermediates in industrial processes, yet they are currently produced using complex multi-step processes that require high temperature and high pressure. We propose a new one-step, low-temperature process in which oxygen is inserted into an alkane molecule, representing a novel and conceptually simplified procedure for making alcohols
Publications (none)
Final Report (none)
Added to Database 23/03/12