Below are excerpts from and links to news stories and articles about the School of Chemistry from print and electronic media over the past year.

Evan Bieske, new Head of School

Thursday, 24 December 2015 - 12:00pm

The School of Chemistry is pleased to announce that Professor Evan Bieske will take on the role of Head of School in 2016.

We are grateful to Professor Frances Separovic for her service as Head of the School of Chemistry for the past six years.

Frances has seen the School through both physical and organisational transformations during a very productive tenure as Head. We wish her an enjoyable sabbatical and lots of time to devote to her new NMR spectrometer.

Frances's gift was made by Les Gamel, glassblower.

Chemistry year end celebration

Saturday, 19 December 2015 - 7:30pm

      Staff and research students from the School celebrated the end of the year at the Moonee Ponds Bowling Club.

New Editors-in-Chief for Aust J Chem

Friday, 18 December 2015 - 10:30pm

Prof John D Wade and Prof George Koutsantonis are the new co-Editors-in-Chief of the Australian Journal of Chemistry. John Wade is honorary Professor of Chemistry at the University of Melbourne, as well as a Professor of Neuroscience at the Florey Institute of Neuroscience & Mental Health, where he leads the Neuropeptides Group in drug design and development. He is also Chief Editor of Frontiers in Chemical Biology, a journal which has grown substantially since his appointment to the role. George Koutsantonis is a Professor at the School of Chemistry & Biochemistry at the University of Western Australia, where he works in the area of inorganic and organometallic chemistry.

Science Research Grants awarded to Chemistry

Friday, 18 December 2015 - 10:15pm

Congratulations to Dr Lars Goerigk, Prof Spas Kolev, Prof Spencer Williams and Assoc Prof Uta Wille who were successful in the Research Grant Support Scheme (RGSS) this year. Their grants will fund the following projects in 2016:
Lars Goerigk, “Reliable prediction of molecular electronic excitation energies”;
Spas Kolev, “Novel polymer inclusion membranes for the separation of rare earth metals”;
Spencer Williams, “Transglycosylases as an antifungal drug target”; and
Uta Wille, “Decoding the mechanism of environmental polymer degradation”.

RACI R&D Topics Conference held in Chemistry

Friday, 11 December 2015 - 10:30pm

Recently (6-9 December), the following students from the Kolev Group organized the 23rd annual RACI Research & Development Topics Conference in Analytical & Environmental Chemistry: Eddie Nagul, Lenka O’Connor Sraj, Chelsea Bassett, Manda Ershad, Charles Croft and Colin Specht. The conference was held in the School of Chemistry and was attend by ~150 research students and some supervisors from around Australia as well as representatives from different analytical instrument companies. Eddie Nagul received second prize for his oral presentation.

Learning & Teaching Initiatives Grant for Chemistry

Friday, 11 December 2015 - 10:15pm

Congratulations to Assoc Prof Uta Wille, Prof Jonathan White & Dr Colette Boskovic who were successful in the recent Learning & Teaching Initiatives Grant round. They were awarded funding for their project, "Demonstrator Resource Modules for Improving the Quality of Laboratory Demonstrating in the Second Year Chemistry Program (DRM-2Y)".

ERA: 5 for Chemical Sciences at Melbourne

Friday, 4 December 2015 - 5:30pm

ERA 2015 results are out and Chemical Sciences at Melbourne is a 5. See ARC website at These results attest to the excellence of our research across the discipline of Chemistry.

Chemistry World interviews Mulvaney & Separovic

Wednesday, 2 December 2015 - 6:15pm

Professor Paul Mulvaney and Professor Frances Separovic were asked recently by Chemistry World to comment on the new Prime Minister and funding for science. Here is the link to the published article.

Editorial Board of Int. J. Chem. Kinetics

Friday, 27 November 2015 - 6:15pm

Assoc Prof Uta Wille has been invited to join the editorial board of International Journal of Chemical Kinetics, a leading archival journal devoted exclusively to chemical kinetics. The journal publishes original research in gas phase, condensed phase, and polymer reaction kinetics, as well as biochemical and surface kinetics.

VIC Inorganic Symposium of RACI: student prizes

Friday, 27 November 2015 - 5:45pm

Congratulations to research students Chathuri Wijekoon (Wedd/Xiao lab), who was awarded the oral prize and Australian Journal of Chemistry award, and Marcus Giansiracusa (Boskovic/Soncini group), who also was awarded an oral prize.

Oenology Paper of the Year

Friday, 20 November 2015 - 7:45pm

Dr Geoffrey Scollary and co-authors have been awarded the 2015 Oenology Paper of the Year by the Australian Society of Viticulture and Oenology (ASVO), the society that owns and publishes the Australian Journal of Grape and Wine Research (AJGWR). The manuscript “Copper(II) addition to white wines containing hydrogen sulfide: residual copper concentration and activity” was selected as the winner. The judges felt that the use of copper was an ongoing debate and studies into the effective removal of residual copper was important in today's wine industry. This is particularly relevant with the rapid transition to alternative closures to cork in wine. The award was made at the Annual ASVO Awards for Excellence Dinner on Thursday 19 November in Adelaide.

New book by Richard Harcourt

Thursday, 19 November 2015 - 8:15pm

A new edition of "Bonding in electron-rich molecules'" by Dr Richard Harcourt, from the School of Chemistry, has recently been published by Springer. The book is part of the series, Lecture Notes in Chemistry 90, and was first published in 1982.

The Qualitative Valence-Bond Approach via increased-valence structures has been expanded to cover increased-valence and 3-electron-3-centre bonding, recoupled-pair bonding and spiral chain O4 polymers.

Bieske appointed to ARC College of Experts

Thursday, 12 November 2015 - 10:30am

Professor Evan Bieske has been appointed to the Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry & Earth Sciences (MPCE) discipline group of the College of Experts of the Australian Research Council. Evan joins Professor Frances Separovic from the School of Chemistry on the MPCE panel.

Professorial promotion for Spencer Williams

Wednesday, 11 November 2015 - 5:15pm

Associate Professor Spencer Williams has been promoted to professor as of January 1st 2016. The School of Chemistry appreciates his many contributions and achievements, particularly in terms of research and teaching. Please congratulate Professor Williams on this well deserved recognition of his achievements as a scholar and teacher,

Endeavour Fellowship to Luke Gamon

Wednesday, 11 November 2015 - 8:15am

PhD student, Luke Gamon, from the Wille Group has been awarded an Endeavour Research Fellowship to undertake postdoctoral research with Prof. Michael Davies for 6 months at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark. The project in Copenhagen is centered on monitoring and mediating oxidative damage in proteins, with a focus on heart disease.

NHMRC grant success

Wednesday, 11 November 2015 - 7:30am

Members of the School were successful in the recent NHMRC Project Grant outcomes. Congratulations to Assoc Prof Paul Donnelly on his project, "Molecular imaging of cancers with copper and zirconium radiopharmaceuticals". Assoc Prof Williams is co-investigator on "Targeting carbohydrate metabolism in Leishmania", and Dr Brett Patterson on "Novel targeted PEG nanoparticles for potent cancer therapy and non-invasive monitoring".

Feature article in Analytica Chimica Acta

Wednesday, 4 November 2015 - 9:15pm

A paper co-authored by PhD student, Eddie Nagul, Dr Ian McKelvie and Professor Spas Kolev from the School of Chemistry, has been published as a feature article in Analytica Chimica Acta.

The article is entitled, 'The nature of the salt error in the Sn(II)-reduced molybdenum blue reaction for determination of dissolved reactive phosphorus in saline waters' and is on pages 120-127 of issue 896.

A cover picture taken from the article is on the front cover of the journal.

ARC grant success

Friday, 30 October 2015 - 6:45pm

Congratulations to the following members of the School on their success in the recent ARC Discovery and LIEF grant schemes: Prof M Ashokkumar: Ultrasound-assisted fabrication of biofunctional materials; Prof Evan Bieske: Shape-shifting molecules: photoisomerization action spectroscopy; Assoc Prof Paul Donnelly: Technetium and copper complexes for diagnostic imaging of neurodegeneration; Prof Paul Mulvaney: The role of molecular dipole layers on charge carrier separation (plus DP with Sader); Prof Frances Separovic: Atomic details of antimicrobial peptides at work in live cells; Assoc Prof Spencer Williams: Unravelling the immunology of complex glycolipids by chemical synthesis; Prof Gavin Reid: An ultra-high-resolution mass spectrometry facility for lipidomics research; Prof Frances Separovic & Dr Marco Sani: Dynamic nuclear polarisation system for molecular structure determination; and Prof Ken Ghiggino (LIEF with UNSW).

Early Career Researcher Grant to Tash Polyzos

Friday, 30 October 2015 - 6:30pm

Dr Anastasios Polyzos was successful in his application to the Early Career Researcher Grant Scheme for funding in 2016. Congratulations Tash on your project, "Flash chemistry: achieving rapid and temporally resolved chemical catalysis".

Feutrill Travel Awards to Chemistry PhD students

Friday, 30 October 2015 - 5:30pm

Congratulations to the following research students who are recipients of Feutrill Awards for 2015, which help support travel to an international conference in the area of Organic Chemistry:
Nitin Patil, who presented at the Chemical Protein Synthesis Meeting 2015 held at St Augustine, USA, 16-20 June,
Lee Wong Chong & Alex MacDonald, who presented posters at the world molecular imaging congress (WIMC) in Honolulu, 2-5 September, and
Mina Barzegar Amiri Olia, who presented at 7th Pacific Symposium on Radical Chemistry (PSRC-7) in Singapore in July.