Jim Hutchison is an expert in green chemistry, biochemistry, and nanoscience, using all three to develop sustainable materials. At the University of Oregon, he is a professor of organic, organometallic and materials chemistry, a Lokey-Harrington Chair, and founding director of the Oregon Nanoscience and Microtechnologies Institute (ONAMI) Safer Nanomaterials and Nanomanufacturing Initiative. He is an associate editor for the Royal Society of Chemistry journal “Environmental Science: Nano,” and co-author of “A Framework to Guide Selection of Chemical Alternatives.”
Areas of Expertise (6)
Media Appearances (4)
The Evolution of a Revolution
Bill Cresko, a professor of biology; Jim Hutchison, the Lokey Harrington chair in chemistry; and Brad Shelton, the UO’s chief research officer, were key players in the university’s science community. Cresko had been on the president’s search committee and had already briefed him about the UO’s strengths in fundamental science. Hutchison was a trailblazer in the field of green chemistry education and, as director of the Materials Science Institute, was a driver among those on campus viewing science through the lens of the market.
Run with a researcher, discuss the Colorado River or talk beer
Around the O online
The tentative lineup of researchers features Beth Miller of the Department of Biology, McKay Sohlberg of the College of Education, Jim Hutchison of the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Keith Frazee of the Department of Educational Methodology, Policy, and Leadership, Dev Sinha of the Department of Mathematics, Richard Taylor of the Department of Physics and Samantha Hopkins of the Clark Honors College.
Computational chemist to join energy and materials cluster
Around the O online
As a computational chemist, Hendon’s role when he joins the UO in August will be to use computers to solve complex materials chemistry problems. He will work alongside UO faculty members in chemistry such as Boettcher, Jim Hutchison, David Johnson, Michael Haley, Darren Johnson and Ramesh Jasti, and will likely collaborate across disciplines with physicists such as Richard Taylor.
Researchers look to make 'messy' nanotech production 'clean and green'
The New York Times print
Consider what it takes to purify a nanomaterial of unwanted chemicals. Traditionally, that has required the repeated use of solvents -- a lot of them, said James Hutchison, a professor at the University of Oregon.
"If you're washing with a solvent, you're wasting a lot of solvent," Hutchison said. "This is the biggest contribution to waste we've been able to see. If you think about a lifecycle analysis on this, you see what's the hot spot, and think about other ways to purify that don't require solvent."
Hutchison and others are trying to come at the nanotech problem with "green chemistry" techniques that emphasize materials, products and processes that reduce or eliminate hazardous substances and conserve energy and resources. His solution for the solvent waste: a nanofiltration membrane that separates nanomaterials from the rest.
Nanotechnology offers new materials and applications that promise numerous benefits to society and the environment, yet there is concern about the potential health and environmental impacts of production and use of nanoscale products. Because nanotechnology is still in the “discovery” phase, the design and production of materials have yet to be optimized. For example, although hundreds of studies of nanomaterial hazards have been reported, there is no consensus about the impacts of these materials or design rules that guide the future development of the materials. During the synthesis of functionalized nanoparticles, hundreds to thousands of atoms assemble into the desired structure in, typically, a rapid series of reaction steps. Little is known about the mechanisms of these reactions, resulting in inefficient syntheses that often involve the use of highly reactive hazardous reagents.
DNA-functionalized gold nanoparticles have been increasingly applied as sensitive and selective analytical probes and biosensors. The DNA ligands bound to a nanoparticle dictate its reactivity, making it essential to know the type and number of DNA strands bound to the nanoparticle surface. Existing methods used to determine the number of DNA strands per gold nanoparticle (AuNP) require that the sequences be fluorophore-labeled, which may affect the DNA surface coverage and reactivity of the nanoparticle and/or require specialized equipment and other fluorophore-containing reagents. We report a UV–visible-based method to conveniently and inexpensively determine the number of DNA strands attached to AuNPs of different core sizes. When this method is used in tandem with a fluorescence dye assay, it is possible to determine the ratio of two unlabeled sequences of different lengths bound to AuNPs. Two sizes of citrate-stabilized AuNPs (5 and 12 nm) were functionalized with mixtures of short (5 base) and long (32 base) disulfide-terminated DNA sequences, and the ratios of sequences bound to the AuNPs were determined using the new method. The long DNA sequence was present as a lower proportion of the ligand shell than in the ligand exchange mixture, suggesting it had a lower propensity to bind the AuNPs than the short DNA sequence. The ratio of DNA sequences bound to the AuNPs was not the same for the large and small AuNPs, which suggests that the radius of curvature had a significant influence on the assembly of DNA strands onto the AuNPs.
Nanotechnology continues to offer new materials and applications that will benefit society, yet there is growing concern about the potential health and environmental impacts of production and use of nanoscale products. Although hundreds of studies of nanomaterial hazards have been reported, due (largely) to the complexity of the nanomaterials, there is no consensus about the impact these hazards will have. This Focus describes the need for a research agenda that addresses these nanomaterial complexities through coordinated research on the applications and implications of new materials, wherein nanomaterials scientists play a central role as we move from understanding to minimizing nanomaterial hazards. Greener nanoscience is presented as an approach to determining and implementing the design rules for safer nanomaterials and safer, more efficient processes.
During the past decade, scientists have developed techniques for synthesizing and characterizing many new materials with at least one dimension on the nanoscale, including nanoparticles, nanolayers, and nanotubes. 1 Still, the design and synthesis (or fabrication) of nanoscale materials with controlled properties is a significant and ongoing challenge within nanoscience and nanotechnology.
Two- and three-dimensional superlattices formed from a family of amine-stabilized gold nanoparticles were investigated by transmission electron microscopy and selected area diffraction studies. The samples were prepared by ligand-exchange reactions between a phosphine-stabilized 1.5 nm precursor and pentadecylamine and exhibit metal core diameters ranging from 1.8 to ∼8 nm. Several of the observed specimens have surprisingly narrow core size dispersity and, as a consequence, form highly organized two- and three-dimensional superlattices. TEM imaging and electron diffraction studies are used to determine both the packing arrangement and the type and degree of order present in these superlattices. Smaller (dCORE ∼ 1.8 nm) nanoparticles form three-dimensional fcc superlattices, a surprising finding in light of the fact that the 1.4 nm precursors have not previously been observed to form such highly ordered superlattices. Narrow dispersity samples of larger nanoparticles (dCORE >5 nm) form organized superlattices in both two and three dimensions. All of these samples exhibited at least translational ordering of the metal cores. In one class of nanoparticle (dCORE ∼ 8 nm) electron diffraction studies provide evidence that the atomic lattices within neighboring nanoparticles are oriented in the same fashion (orientational ordering). The high degree of order found with these superlattices suggests it may be possible, with sufficiently monodisperse samples, to obtain single crystals of this family of nanoparticles.