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Spring 2017 San Francisco ACS Meeting

Photos courtesy of Murthy Gudipati. The seven sessions of the "Expanding the Frontiers in Condensed Phase Astrochemistry: Electron Transfer Processes in Ices and Catalysis on Interstellar Grains" symposium began with a room filled to capacity on Monday. A change of rooms led to expanded discussions with presentations by undergraduate students all the way to emeritus professors. The astrochemistry symposium was one of the most highly attended of the PHYS symposia drawing in chemists and other chemically-minded scientists from across the spectrum of chemistry, physics, astronomy, and geoscience to name a few. Look for more information coming about the upcoming Washington, DC symposium with time allotted for watching the solar eclipse!

ACS Astrochemistry 2017 Dissertation Award

For 2017, the ACS Astrochemistry Dissertation Award is given to Dr. Eric Parker of the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. Dr. Parker's dissertation, “New Insights into Biomolecule Polymerization Under Plausible Primordial Earth Conditions: Implications for the Origin of Life” from Georgia Tech under the guidance of Prof. Facundo M. Fernandez with collaboration from Dr. Jason P. Dworkin, was selected for its creativity related to fundamental questions at the core of astrochemistry. Dr. Parker will receive a $500 cash prize, an invitation to give a talk at the Fall 2017 ACS Astrochemistry symposium (Molecules in Space: Linking the Interstellar Medium to (Exo)Planets), a $500 travel award provided by ACS Earth and Space Chemistry to attend the fall ACS meeting, and a certificate. All images are used with the permission of the awardee. Congratulations!

ACS Earth and Space Chemistry Journal Launches

ACS Publications has launched ACS Earth and Space Chemistry with submissions open now. It promises to be a high-impact journal with one of its primary outlets being astrochemistry. Several subdivision members are involved in the project giving a new outlet for astrochemistry and atmospheric related research.

Fall 2016 ACS Philadelphia Wraps Up

The Frontiers of Solar System Chemistry-From Planets to Comets and Beyond symoposium at ACS Philadelphia wrapped up on August 21, 2016. Thank you, Reggie and Stefanie, for a job well done! We had over 50 total speakers, kept the room attendance largely over 30, and even peaked near 75. It was a very successful program with lots of questions and good discussion. The entire breadth of astrochemistry was represented. The good-natured discussions also lead to some promising future work. Thank you all who attended.

Brian Hays

We would also like to thank our 2016 Dissertation Awardee, Dr. Brian Hays (seen below), for his contribution to the symposium.

Brian Hays

Astrochemistry Outstanding Doctoral Dissertation Award

The 2016 ACS Astrochemistry subdivision has been awarded to Dr. Brian Hays formerly of Emory University now at Purdue University. The full announcement about Dr. Hays's work is given here. For more information about the award and now to apply or nominate a recent Ph.D., please see the dissertation award guidelines.

Spring 2017 Astrochemistry Symposium

The 253rd ACS National Meeting was held in San Francisco, CA on 2-6 April 2017. The Astrochemistry symposium for this meeting was entitled "Expanding the Frontiers in Condensed Phase Astrochemistry: Electron Transfer Processes in Ices and Catalysis on Interstellar Grains". More information is given with the announcement.

Astrochemistry in Scientific American

A recent article appearing in the popular science magazine Scientific American is bringing astrochemistry to the forefront of modern science. Check out "The Hunt for Alien Molecules" by Clara Moskowitz.