The rice stem borer, Scirpophaga incertulas, and citrus leafminer, Phyllocnistis citrella are key pests of rice and citrus respectively (Fig.1 a&b). Cryptic nature of these pests makes it difficult for pesticide molecules to reach the target area. Moreover, indiscriminate use of the pesticides is a concern to consumers, environment and non-target organisms. A control program that is directed against adults by exploiting the pheromone has potential to limit the population build-up in addition to reducing the damage. Currently pheromone is loaded into a polymer membrane, polythene vials, rubber/ silicone, foam and capillary tubes. These matrices have high release rates and the efficacy of the pheromone loaded into the lures cease before the end of cropping season and warrants frequent replacement which scales up the cost involved in chemistry and labor. This demand a focus on delivery of pheromone via alternate routes.
With molecular detection gaining rapid importance in clinical, agriculture and animal husbandry related applications, and in academic research, it has become necessary to identify cost-effective, logistically simpler a method for detection of nucleic acids. The technique being developed hinges on the concept of surfaceenhanced Raman scattering (SERS) signal amplification. The project brings together three laboratories with complementary expertise in different areas needed for the execution of the concept.
Solution processed PVs (SPV) will be a primary emphasis for the proposed solar cell technologies which will make use of semiconducting polymers, small-molecule organic compounds, quantum-dots, organic-inorganic hybrid perovskite as photoactive materials.
Systemic candidiasis is a life-threatening disease, predominantly caused by several species of Candida, which largely affects the immune- compromised individuals and patients in intensive care. This work focuses on developing easy and quick detection methods based on centromere sequences specific for Candida species.
The ever-rising demand for energy is primarily addressed using earth’s renewable sources, out of which only a handful fraction of it is utilized and a much larger portion (greater than 70%) of it is wasted as form of heat. Thermoelectric (TE) devices thus are centric for global sustainability as it utilizes the waste heat to generate electricity. The work here aims to use the waste heat to design TE devices that can provide total-package solution to mitigate environmental crisis and energy needs as a potential frontrunner for energy management in near future.
Platinum or Platinum-based alloys supported on a carbon base are the traditional metals of choice as catalysts for both cathodic and anodic electrochemical reactions in polymer electrolyte membrane-based (PEM) fuel cells (FC) or PEMFCs. Such fuel cells are ubiquitous in various modern-day green energy technologies. However, Pt being a high-cost metal and also susceptible to carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning that happens to be one of the byproducts in the underlying electrochemical reaction, a low-cost non-Pt based nanostructures that are not just highly active but also more stable may offer an alternative. Development of highly efficient and robust non-Pt based electro catalysts based on small organic molecules (SOMs) with higher oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) is crucial for boosting the scope of current FCs.
Climate change due to greenhouse gas (GHG) emission from everyday combustion of carbonaceous fossil fuels such as coal, petroleum or natural gas is an extremely serious problem confronting humanity as a whole. Amongst these GHGs the most damaging is carbon dioxide (CO2). Catalytic conversion of the emitted CO2 to value added chemicals (methane, methanol, formaldehyde, formic acid, carbon monoxide) either by heterogeneous or homogeneous catalysis, may be the best economically viable route to recycle CO2 reducing CO2 emission and also as an added bonus, our dependence on fossil fuels. There are no standard technologies available to efficiently convert CO2 directly from the flue gas due to its mixed constituents and also the presence of water vapour, all factors likely to poison and decompose the catalyst within a short operational time. So, we aim to:
Surgical site infections (SSI) are the most common hospital acquired infections (HAI) related to surgical procedures; responsible for increasing cost, substantial morbidity and occasional mortality. The medical community has long felt the need for materials whether physical or chemical or a mixture of both, that can be applied to the directly or indirectly damaged tissue during surgery, acting as a wound sealant while also preventing infection. Our group developed syringe deliverable injectable hydrogels as a sealant with intrinsic antimicrobial activity using aqueous/buffered solutions of an antibacterial polymer (polymer 1) and a bioadhesive polymer (polymer 2).
Materials that phosphoresce naturally at room temperatures, otherwise known as RTP materials, have several potential applications in modern-day display devices, solid-state lighting with high luminescence power and various sensors. Most organic molecules even though endowed with a long lived stable triplet state, are not highly efficient due to their susceptibility to vibrational quenching, and difficulty in achieving the correct band gap for applications targeting the NIR or infra-red range. These two drawbacks in purely organic molecules make the aforementioned applications difficult to realize. So, we aim to:
The broader concept of the proposal is the design and synthesis of materials for energy storage, generation and conversion. The materials involved are either organic or inorganic-organic hybrid porous polymers. We have focused our efforts for storing hydrogen, and photo- and electro-chemical water splitting for generating clean energy. Furthermore these materials have potential to act as bi-functional catalysts for oxygen evolution (OER) and oxygen reduction reactions (ORR) and find applications in regenerative fuel cells and metal air batteries. Porous organic polymers, particularly conjugated microporous polymers (CMPs) are promising materials for energy storage, light- harvesting and photocatalysis. They are low dense and possess excellent thermal/chemical stability due to strong C-C linkages.
Alzheimer’s disease (AD), a devastating neurodegenerative disorders accounts for 70-80% of all dementia globally. The progressive loss or deterioration of cognition, task performance ability, mood, speech, behavior and memory is attributed to amyloid beta (Aβ) plaque deposition in the brain. To develop diagnostic and therapeutic tools for treating AD, studying Aβ production and aggregation and ways to clear it from the brain is critical. Current AD diagnosis is traditional – still based on behavioral tests or cognition in patients. So, the project aims to: