Wednesday, June 04, 2008
Chemistry professor lands cover of prestigious journals
Since arriving at Louisiana Tech last September, Dr. Collin Wick, assistant professor of chemistry, has been conducting innovative research on methods for removing nuclear waste from water at the molecular level.
And for the second time in just nine months, his work has landed him a cover article on both Journal of Physical Chemistry C and Chemical Physics Letters, two of the most respected publications in physical chemistry and chemical physics.
Dr. Collin Wick
Assistant Professor of Chemistry
Wick's most recent cover article, co-authored with Dr. Liem Dang of the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and titled "Recent Advances in Understanding Transfer Ions across Aqueous Interfaces," discusses recent studies of ion transport across aqueous interfaces and provides insight into the ion transport mechanism and why certain interfacial behavior is observed.
"There are a very large number of areas where water is contaminated with nuclear waste," says Wick. "One way to clean up this area of waste is to extract the waste from the surface of the water by adding an oil-like liquid that in effect 'grabs' the waste, bringing it into the oil-like liquid and out of the water."
This latest article is a continuation of a previous article written with Dang titled, "Molecular dynamics study of ion transfer and distribution at the interface of water and 1,2-dichloroethane," which was also featured as a cover article.
Back in June of 2006, the most widely read and cited physical chemistry journal in the world, The Journal of Physical Chemistry, published by the American Chemical Society, also featured Wick's work on its cover.
Wick plans to continue this research to discover a pathway for optimizing the type of oil-like liquid to be used for the decontamination of water with nuclear waste.
"This work has already gotten me noticed enough to get an invitation to write the article in Chemical Physics Letters," says Wick. "I will work to leverage it to get grant money from the National Science Foundation and Department of Energy to further investigate the process of cleaning up nuclear waste from water. In addition to understanding the full process of how nuclear waste is cleaned up from the molecular level, I will also work understand the chemistry at the surfaces of cloud droplets, which is strongly related."