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Nashville, TN, United States

Fisk University is a historically black university founded in 1866 in Nashville, Tennessee, United States. The 40-acre campus is a historic district listed on the National Register of Historic Places.In 1930, Fisk was the first African-American institution to gain accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Accreditations for specialized programs quickly followed. Wikipedia.

Fisk University and Consolidated Nuclear Security Llc | Date: 2015-09-02

A photodetector device, including: a scintillator material operable for receiving incident radiation and emitting photons in response; a photodetector material coupled to the scintillator material operable for receiving the photons emitted by the scintillator material and generating a current in response, wherein the photodetector material includes a chalcopyrite semiconductor crystal; and a circuit coupled to the photodetector material operable for characterizing the incident radiation based on the current generated by the photodetector material. Optionally, the scintillator material includes a gamma scintillator material and the incident radiation received includes gamma rays. Optionally, the photodetector material is further operable for receiving thermal neutrons and generating a current in response. The circuit is further operable for characterizing the thermal neutrons based on the current generated by the photodetector material.

Fisk University and Consolidated Nuclear Security Llc | Date: 2015-06-03

A radiation detection device, including: a support structure; and a chalcopyrite crystal coupled to the support structure; wherein, when the chalcopyrite crystal is exposed to radiation, a visible spectrum of the chalcopyrite crystal changes from an initial color to a modified color. The visible spectrum of the chalcopyrite crystal is changed back from the modified color to the initial color by annealing the chalcopyrite crystal at an elevated temperature below a melting point of the chalcopyrite crystal over time. The chalcopyrite crystal is optionally a

Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration | Branch: | Program: STTR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 124.46K | Year: 2015

We propose a spectrometer that employs a single room temperature semiconductor detector that can perform both gamma and neutron spectroscopy. The proposed detector is based on the novel mercurous halide materials, Hg2X2 (X=I, Cl, Br). The mercurous halides are new wide band-gap semiconductor detector materials that can provide radiation detection with low cost, high performance and long term stability. Despite years of research, no explored room temperature semiconductor detection candidates can satisfy all three features simultaneously. At Brimrose, we have successfully developed the growth procedures for high quality Hg2X2 crystals for long wavelength infrared (LWIR) imaging systems. Recently, we have been able to engineer our growth process toward gamma radiation detection and have demonstrated initial encouraging detector response from Hg2I2 to both gamma and alpha particle incident radiations. The focus will be on the material engineering aspect of the detector material itself (i.e., crystal growth and post growth processing), as well as on the detector fabrication and system design. The proposed mercurous halides-based nuclear instrument can be used onboard NASA's orbiters and landers for space planetology. Specifically, it can be used to determine surface and sub-surface composition of planetary bodies via both gamma spectroscopy and neutron spectroscopy.

Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: HIST BLACK COLLEGES AND UNIV | Award Amount: 299.95K | Year: 2016

The Historically Black Colleges and Universities-Undergraduate Program (HBCU-UP) Research Initiation Awards (RIAs) provide support to STEM junior faculty at HBCUs who are starting to build a research program, as well as for mid-career faculty who may have returned to the faculty ranks after holding an administrative post or who need to redirect and rebuild a research program. Faculty members may pursue research at their home institution, at an NSF-funded Center, at a research intensive institution or at a national laboratory. The RIA projects are expected to help further the faculty members research capability and effectiveness, to improve research and teaching at his or her home institution, and to involve undergraduate students in research experiences. With support from the National Science Foundation, Fisk University will conduct research aimed at isolating novel chemical entities from marine micro-organisms. This project represents a new area of research (Marine Natural Chemistry) at Fisk University, a small liberal arts HBCU with over 94% under-represented minority undergraduates in STEM. This project will be used to enhance teaching and learning at Fisk across several disciplines (chemistry, biology, mathematics (statistics) and computer science) and thus, provide experiential learning to a wide undergraduate student population. In addition, Fisk University is transforming its STEM pedagogies to include authentic research in course-associated laboratories, where this work will serve as a model in both organic and analytical chemistry courses, thus having a broader impact on the STEM majors, their professional development, and retention.

The goal of the proposed study is to identify new bioactive chemical entities from a newly isolated yellow-cream Gram-negative, rod-shaped Pseudomonas stutzeri bacteria (strain 35M3) whose identity and uniqueness was confirmed from 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis. The specific aims of this project are to: 1) to use high information density analytic tools to identify novel chemical entities from the newly identified strain of Pseudomonas 35M3 and the impact on this strains metabolome by co-culture experiments (with Gram-positive bacteria Rhodococcus wratislaviensis, Gram-negative bacteria Escherichia coli, and fungus Saccharomyces cerevisiae separately) or after antibiotic selection; and 2) extend bioactivity analysis beyond the typical assessment of bacterial and mammalian cell cytotoxicity to include the impact of these novel compounds on dopamine neuron development and protection against induced dopamine neurodegeneration using C. elegans as a model system. This study has the potential to identify 16S rRNA gene sequences of newly identified microbial strains. The data generated from this work will inform the design of future experiments that explore other metabolomes and/or dissect cellular pathways central to normal homeostasis of cell development, signaling, cell-cell communication, and other processes. This project will be conducted in collaboration with Vanderbilt University.

Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: HIST BLACK COLLEGES AND UNIV | Award Amount: 377.65K | Year: 2015

The Historically Black Colleges and Universities Undergraduate Program (HBCU-UP) through Targeted Infusion Projects supports the development, implementation, and study of evidence-based innovative models and approaches for improving the preparation and success of HBCU undergraduate students so that they may pursue STEM graduate programs and/or careers. The project at Fisk University seeks to develop and implement a two-semester integrated course-laboratory experience in polymer chemistry as an alternative to the traditional General Chemistry two-semester course for undergraduate students. The lecture/discussion and research-embedded laboratories will be interdependently linked to serve as a basis for engendering excitement about the impact that scientific discovery has on society and to build research skills that would be relevant for students continued engagement in research as an undergraduate STEM major and beyond. Fisk students are disproportionately under-represented minorities; thus increasing student interest and efficacy in STEM will have the direct effect of broadening participation in STEM careers.

The goal of the proposed project is to further enhance student learning and academic outcomes in Chemistry, and to increase student retention in STEM. Specifically, the goals are to: 1) deepen student learning of core concepts in General Chemistry via an Introduction to Polymer Chemistry two semester course sequence integrated with authentic research as an option for meeting the requirements for General Chemistry; 2) develop enduring materials to permit replication of this course (classroom, laboratory and Supplementary Instruction) nationally; and 3) utilize assessment of student outcomes, broadly defined, as embedded educational research. The benefits of achieving the goals of this project include increased student deeper learning of fundamental concepts in General Chemistry, whetting students interest in STEM fields as a major and as a career.

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