CORVALLIS, Ore. – In the search for new local energy sources, a young Corvallis company is betting on two of the Willamette Valley’s most abundant crops – wheat and ryegrass.

At the March 12 Corvallis Science Pub, Chris Beatty, president of Trillium FiberFuels, and Vince Remcho, an Oregon State University chemist, will discuss Trillium’s collaboration with OSU to develop ethanol and other products from agricultural waste products.

The program will begin at 6 p.m. on Monday, March 12, at the Old World Deli, 341 Second St. in Corvallis. It is free and open to the public.

According to the Renewable Fuels Association, the nation produced more than 13 billion gallons of ethanol in 2010, mostly from corn. The 2007 federal energy act set a national target of 36 billion gallons by 2022. Much of the gap is expected to be filled by ethanol from cellulose.

Yeast is typically used to ferment biomass sugars into ethanol. One challenge is that xylose, the second most common sugar, does not ferment. Trillium’s technology uses an enzyme to convert xylose to a form that yeast can ferment.

In their presentation, Beatty and Remcho will discuss the potential for this technology to expand the nation’s biofuel industry. In addition, they will outline “some interesting opportunities in the biomass sugar world that have emerged during Trillium’s journey,” Beatty said.

Sponsors of Science Pub include Terra magazine at OSU, the Downtown Corvallis Association and the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry.

Opportunities to realize the economic promise of locally produced biofuels rely on new technologies. Trillium FiberFuels, a local startup company with strong connections to Oregon State University, is working on techniques to generate ethanol from agricultural waste products. On the way to that goal, the company has found promising by-products that complement their interests and accomplishments in the cellulosic ethanol business.

Speakers: Chris Beatty, President, Trillium FiberFuels; Vince Remcho, Professor of Chemistry, OSU College of Science

Old World Deli – 341 2nd St., Corvallis


Trillium FiberFuels


Oregon State’s Rosa Grajczyk sees neutron science exposure, new contacts as ‘asset throughout my career.’

Oregon State University’s Rosa Grajczyk

A young Oregon State University graduate student has successfully turned her participation in a two-day POWGEN Neutron Diffraction workshop at ORNL’s Spallation Neutron Source (SNS) into a published paper in the Journal of Solid State Chemistry.

Participants at the workshop last September were invited to bring along their own samples for analysis on the time of flight diffractometer. They received training on the instrument and then were taught how to collect and analyze the data, said POWGEN lead instrument scientist Ashfia Huq.

“We used the sample changer, which can hold up to 24 samples, and everyone was given two and a half hours worth of time,” Huq said. News of a second paper to emerge from the workshop recently reached her, as well.

Rosa Grajczyk, a second-year doctoral student in chemistry who is working on structural properties of new materials, brought a sample from the solid solution of indium-gallium-magnesium-oxide to the workshop. “The indium-gallium-magnesium-oxide study is a part of my thesis, which is based on the structure-property relationships of the trigonal bipyramidal site in layered oxide compounds,” Grajczyk explained.

Trigonal bipyramid formation refers to a molecular geometry in chemistry, featuring one atom at the center and 5 more at the corners. In this structure, the bond angles surrounding an atom are not identical, as no geometrical arrangement can result in five equally-sized bond angles in three dimensions.

“The Powgen workshop was a great experience that I would highly recommend for other scientists to participate in,” the young researcher said.

“The amount of detail that went into the workshop was incredible, which was facilitated by the helpfulness of everyone at the ORNL facility. I feel that the amount of knowledge that I received during the workshop has been extremely helpful to my research. And the contacts that I was able to make during that time will continue to be an asset throughout my career.”

“Substitutions into the trigonal bipyramidal (TBP) crystallographic site of YMnO3 and YbFe2O4-type structures have recently been discovered to have interesting physical properties,” Grajczyk explained.

“To further understand the role of this molecular geometry in these compounds, we completed a study of a solid solution of doped InGaCu1-xMgxO4. We chose this material because it has diverse electronic configurations and similar ionic radii of ions in the TBP site.”

The trigonal bipyramidal site in oxide materials has not been as well documented as the octahedral or tetrahedral crystallographic sites, Grajczyk said. This class of materials shows a wide variety of useful physical properties, depending on the ions that are substituted into the structure. Researchers must understand the structure-property relationship in order to optimize the properties of these materials, whether magnetic, dielectric, or optical.

Before coming to the workshop at SNS, Grajczyk had already done an extensive part of her research on the material, using X-ray diffraction. But neutron diffraction was also necessary, to determine how much of each element was in the TBP site, in addition to the other structural parameters of the material. “The use of neutrons is necessary because of the increased detection of the lighter magnesium and oxygen atoms, compared with what can be observed with X-ray diffraction.

“POWGEN was useful for collecting this data because of the high intensities that can be achieved by this instrument, while still maintaining the high amount of resolution that is required for our analysis.”

Their initial X-Ray Diffraction data showed that when they added magnesium into the material’s structure, the c-parameter, which is relative to the height of the structure, increased. The neutron diffraction data then allowed them to determine the bond lengths of the trigonal bipyramidal site in their sample, and to compare these lengths to those of the InGaCuO4 and InGaMgO4 end members.

Their findings were accepted for publication in the Journal of Solid State Chemistry.

Huq said the workshop included lectures on the basics of TOF neutron diffraction and on the software packages GSAS (General Structure Analysis System) and Fullprof, routinely used for powder diffraction data analysis.

Other lectures included analysis of magnetic structures by Vasile. O. Garlea of the HB2A diffractometer at HFIR and by Jülich scientist Olivier Gourdon titled, “From Disorder to Long range order, Jana2006 as a new software tool.”

Funding for this work was from the National Science Foundation. Research at ORNL’s Spallation Neutron Source sponsored by the Scientific User Facilities Division, DOE Office of Science.— Agatha Bardoel, March 7, 2012




67th ACS Northwest Regional Meeting – NORM 2012 

Boise Convention Centre on the Grove

Boise, Idaho

June 24 – 27, 2012




Visit for descriptions of the technical symposia, workshops, and special events.

NORM 2012 is co-located with the American Association for the Advancement of Science-Pacific Division Regional Meeting

All NORM 2012 attendees are welcomed to participate in all AAAS-PD events. See the AAAS-PD 2012 Regional Meeting website for information. Some AAAS events require advanced registration.

Register NOW

Submit an Abstract NOW

Submit an Award Nomination NOW

Abstract Submittal Deadline: April 18

Early Registration Deadline: June 1

Plan to join us June 24 – 27 at the Boise Centre on the Grove in Boise, ID

American Chemical Society 

1155 16th Street NW
Washington, DC 20036


Herbert F. Frolander Outstanding Graduate Teaching Assistant Award

Deadline for Nominations – April 9, 2012

The Graduate School invites nominations for the annual Herbert F. Frolander Outstanding Graduate Teaching Assistant.  The Graduate School coordinates the nomination and selection process for this annual award, which is named in honor of Dr. Herbert F. Frolander, retired professor of the former College of Oceanography.  Funds for the award are provided by the Graduate School.

The intent of this award is to recognize an outstanding teaching assistant at Oregon State University.  Last year the award was presented to Kaitlin Bonner, a doctoral student and graduate teaching assistant in the Department of Zoology.

The recipient of this year’s award will receive an engraved plaque and a cash award of $1,000 (subject to tax withholding). In addition, the recipient will have his/her name added to the perpetual plaque, which bears the names of all previous recipients of the Frolander award. This plaque is located in Valley Library.   Nomination deadline for the Frolander Outstanding Graduate Teaching Assistant award is April 9, 2012.

More information is available at this link:


Memo To: Rich G. Carter, Chair

Department of Chemistry

From: Fran Saveriano

Director of Graduate Student Financial Support and Recruitment

Subject: 2012-13 Bayley Graduate Fellow

I am pleased to inform you that your nominee, Subham Mahapatra, has been awarded a $4,000 Bayley Graduate Fellowship for the 2012-13 academic year. An award letter to the recipient is enclosed and we ask that you ensure his receipt of it.

Congratulations on Subham’s selection in this prestigious university-wide fellowship competition. Selection for this award is certainly an honor for which Subham may be justifiably proud.

Thank you for participating in this process and advancing your nominee for consideration in this year’s Bayley Graduate Fellowship competition.

Please let me know if you have questions.



As many of you know, I am stepping down from my position as Director of the Environmental Sciences Undergraduate Program in June of this year.  I have greatly enjoyed my time working with the program, but it is time for me to do other things, and for the program to be led by someone with new visions.
I am eager to help recruit someone great to take these reins!

Please disseminate widely the attached position description/job announcement!  The position is open to tenure-track or tenured faculty members from any unit at OSU.

I am happy to talk with anyone who thinks that they might be interested in the position — to answer questions, share my experiences with the program, and so on.  The posting, which is number 0008679, should be accessible via the OSU jobs site by tomorrow, and it will be listed in tomorrow’s edition of OSU Today.

Thank you for your help in getting the word out!


Pat Muir

Patricia S. Muir
Professor, Botany and Plant Pathology
Director, Environmental Sciences Undergraduate Program Oregon State University Corvallis, OR  97331-2902
(541) 737-1745

ESUP Director Position Announcement


Hello Academic Deans,

We are extending the 2011 OSU Recognition of Authors to include edited collection/volumes of original scholarship.  We recognize that a considerable amount of work goes into editing these pieces of original scholarship and feel they should be recognized accordingly.

Again, this recognition is for book authors and editors of collections/volumes with a copyright date of 2011.  The deadline for submission to Philip Vue is Friday, March 30th, 2012.


TO:         Academic Deans

RE:          Recognition of authors for 2011

Recognition of OSU book authors will be part of the inaugural spring recognition event to be held during the week of May 7th, 2012.

This message is a request for each college to submit information about faculty-authored books with a copyright date of 2011.  The submission form is attached – please note the request to use a separate page for each submission.

As requested last year, please do an “initial screening” in the dean’s office, and then forward your college information as one packet to Philip Vue by Friday, March 30th, 2012.

Again, this recognition is for book authors, and with a copyright date of 2011.

Thanks very much for your assistance.



The College of Agricultural Sciences is pleased to announce that we are seeking nominations for the Agriculture Hall of Fame award.  This award is the highest honor the College of Agricultural Sciences bestows to its friends and alumni.  It recognizes men and women who have had an enduring influence on the welfare of Oregon’s agriculture, natural resources, and related industries and communities.  The nominees need not be alumni of the college.

The Agriculture Hall of Fame award includes a plaque and the name of the awardee being placed on the perpetual Agriculture Hall of Fame board displayed in the LaSells Stewart Center. The Agriculture Hall of Fame award for 2012 will be presented on October 19 in conjunction with Homecoming Weekend.

Attached is the nomination criteria for this award along with a list of previous recipients.

Please send the award nomination electronically to Lonnie Morris by COB on May 4, 2012.

Award Criteria

Ag Hall of Fame Winners