Purnendu “Sandy” Dasgupta Awarded $1 Million NASA Grant

September 21, 2015

The Column

The Column, The Column-09-22-2015, Volume 11, Issue 17

Purnendu “Sandy” Dasgupta, Hamish Small Chair in Ion Analysis of Chemistry and Biochemistry in the UT Arlington College of Science, has been awarded almost $1 million from NASA. The grant will support research into extension of the open-tubular capillary chromatography platform that Dasgupta developed for the detection and separation of ions.

Purnendu “Sandy” Dasgupta, Hamish Small Chair in Ion Analysis of Chemistry and Biochemistry in the UT Arlington College of Science, has been awarded almost $1 million from NASA. The grant will support research into extension of the open-tubular capillary chromatography platform that Dasgupta developed for the detection and separation of ions.

Dasgupta is now working towards tackling the challenge of designing a portable system for liquid-based separation and detection of chiral amino acids in space. He said: “Life is centred on one type of chirality. Our objective, if we can detect amino acids, is to separate the amino acids into chiral forms. That means we’ll be able to tell whether we have an excess of one chiral form over another, or dominantly just one chiral form. In that case, it would definitely be related to life.”