Rowan University Professor Wins Award for Separation Science Research

By: Joshua Gras, Follow South Jersey Higher Education Intern

Photo: Michael Mandarino | Follow South Jersey

GLASSBORO, N.J. — Dr. James Grinias, an assistant professor at Rowan University, received the Satinder Ahuja Award for Young Investigators thanks to his work in separation science.

Dr. Grinias has been working on new techniques for two-dimensional chromatography. This process is an important part of chemistry in which chemists can separate molecules from one another for better analysis. Dr. Grinias’s work will allow better results from certain tests and lower amounts of chemical waste.

Dr. Grinias started working for Rowan University in 2017 for the school’s department of Chemistry & Biochemistry. This award isn’t the young chemist’s first award, either, as he earned the National Science Foundation’s CAREER award. This award gave him access to $524,999 to continue his research.

The increased complexity that Dr. Grinias’ new type of two-dimensional chromatography will allow for multiple tests on samples to be conducted at the same time. WThese tests previously had to be conducted one at a time. The process would also become automated making it that much easier for researchers to find what they are looking for. The lesser waste produced by this new technique also ensures that environmental impact as well as disposal costs are reduced.

One of the most exciting things that Dr. Grinias and his teams do is making sure their research is accessible to chemists who don’t have access to the most expensive equipment. Dr. Grinias uses 3D printed parts and single-board computers so those who wish to follow in his footsteps can do so.

Dr. Grinias credits a lot of his success to the students who work in his lab.

“[This award] is a reflection on them, as much as me,” Dr. Grinias said.

This article was produced by a Follow South Jersey news intern thanks to a grant provided by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation through the New Jersey Health Initiatives program to create hyper-local news to meet the informational and health needs of the City of Bridgeton, N.J.