Fairmont State Receives Grant to Fund Laboratory Equipment
Fairmont State University has been awarded $20,000 in grant funding from STaR: Science, Technology & Research, a division of the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, to support the purchase of a new Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR) spectrometer.
The new FTIR spectrometer will be used by faculty and up to 150 students annually for quantitative analysis, molecular structure determination, and to identify compounds synthesized in the laboratory. The FTIR spectrometer will replace an outdated instrument in the Department of Natural Science’s comprehensive laboratory suite, which includes a gas chromatograph-mass spectrophotometer, a nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometer, an atomic absorption spectrophotometer, a fluorometer, a polarimeter, a gel permeation chromatograph, and ultraviolet-visible spectrophotometers.
The project proposal was developed by a team of Fairmont State faculty, including Drs. Daniel Sadowsky, Andreas Baur, Matt Scanlon, and Jojo Joseph. “Our students will be using the new FTIR spectrometer in a variety of contexts across the core laboratory curriculum,” said Sadowsky.
“In the chemistry program here at Fairmont State, we deliberately have small class sizes and really focus on hands-on, practical experience in the laboratory,” Sadowsky explained. “The new FTIR spectrometer will absolutely have an impact; the students will be using state-of-the-art technology and pushing it to its limits.”
STaR’s Instrumentation Grant Program supports undergraduate students in West Virginia to continue careers in science, technology, engineering, and math by increasing their exposure to scientific instrumentation. With the new spectrometer, Fairmont State aims to provide undergraduate students with hands-on experience that prepares them for employment and graduate education opportunities.
“Developing a deep familiarity with the capabilities of such a versatile instrument gives them good preparation for graduate school or employment in a wide variety of industries,” Sadowsky added.