Baylor Chemistry Prof Reports Discovery, Awaits Patent

April 25, 1996

WACO, Texas - Dr. Charles Garner, assistant professor of chemistry at Baylor University, has recently reported the discovery of several simple organic compounds which can immobilize a wide variety of solvents as transparent gels.

The material could have applications ranging from cosmetics to oil spill recovery. These compounds are simpler than other materials with similar properties, said Garner.

"This type of behavior is difficult to predict in advance," Garner said. "People working in this field are surprised at how simple these compounds are." The simplicity of the compounds suggests that they could be easier to prepare and less expensive than materials currently being used, he said. A request for a patent on these materials is in progress.

This research was performed by Garner and an undergraduate student, Brian Mistrot. The biweekly publication Chemical & Engineering News included a brief summary of the discovery in its April 15 edition. As a result, Garner has been contacted by numerous industrial chemists interested in possible uses of the materials. Garner said he will continue to study the materials to determine how they function, how to obtain them easily and economically, and will pursue industrial uses of the compounds.

For more information, contact Dr. Garner at (817) 755-3311.

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