Professor Grace Muna is the analytical chemist of the department. She shares with Professor Rizk the uncanny ability to keep her lab occupied year-round with undergraduate research students, which is a very difficult task because coursework typically pulls students away during the fall and spring semesters. This summer she has three students working with her on projects combining electrochemistry and nanochemistry.
Another biology major, Joel Green, (pictured left) came on board just three weeks ago. He stopped by to chat with Stacey and he took so long that Dr. Muna thought she should put him to work. She asked him whether he would be interested in research and he was up to it. Joel is working on the same project with Stacey, however, he's modifying gold (not glassy carbon) electrodes with gold nanoparticles and testing their performance on the catalytic oxidation of homocysteine and cysteine. This allows the group to do a comparison study to see which modified electrode outperforms the other in terms of selectivity, sensitivity and stability.
Chemistry major Joseph Williamson (pictured right) was continuing the ongoing work of developing a portable method to detect lead in water. He was testing whether bismuth nanoparticles on glassy carbon electrodes can be stabilized by a nafion polymer (based on Teflon) to enhance their long term stability. Joseph recently moved back to his home state, and will be continuing his education at University of Arkansas in the fall.