posted on April 23, 2014

MSI Principal Investigators Professor Laura Gagliardi (Chemistry) and Professor Chris Leighton (Chemical Engineering and Materials Science) have been named Distinguished McKnight University Professors. This award recognizes outstanding faculty members who recently achieved full professor status. The announcement appears on the Scholars Walk website.

Professor Gagliardi uses quantum chemistry and classical simulation techniques to study chemical systems. Her work at MSI includes study of homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysis in energy-related processes, reactivity and separation processes in nanoporous materials, and heavy-element-containing chemical systems. An article about Professor Gagliardi appears on the chemistry department website and an MSI Research Spotlight highlighting her work using MSI appeared in June 2013.

Professor Leighton studies the electronic and magnetic properties of materials. He uses MSI to analyze magnetization, electrical transport, and X-ray diffraction data. They also use neutron scattering facilities to collect data that provides information about the crystalline structure and magnetic properties of materials. An article about Professor Leighton appears on the chemical engineering and materials science website.


posted on April 15, 2014

MSI Principal Investigator Thomas Hoye, a professor in the chemistry department, has received the 2014 Minnesota Award from the American Chemical Society’s Minnesota section. This award is made annually to MN-ACS members who have made outstanding contributions to chemical research or to the profession. An article about Professor Hoye and this award appears on the Department of Chemistry website.

Professor Hoye and his research group use MSI to support their investigations into benzynes and the hexadehydro-Diels-Alder reaction. This work has been published in the prestigious journal Nature; MSI featured it as part of the Research Spotlights series in March 2013.

posted on April 3, 2014

Rachel Soble, a UM Twin Cities undergraduate, has been named a 2014 Barry M. Goldwater Scholar. Ms. Soble is in the research group of MSI Principal Investigator Jeffrey Gralnick (associate professor, BioTechnology Institute). The annual Goldwater Scholarship is awarded to sophomores and juniors who intend to pursue research careers in mathematics, the natural sciences, and engineering.

Ms. Soble, who is in the University Honors Program, is her third year of a five-year undergraduate program. She is studying for degrees in genetics, cell biology, and development and computer science and is planning to pursue a Ph.D. in computational biology. Her interest is in computational frameworks for research in microbial ecology and physiology. More information can be found on the College of Science and Engineering website.

The Gralnick group’s research at MSI uses Tn-Seq, a technique for evaluating genes in an organism, to study the extracellular respiration of the bacterium Shewanella oneidensis. The group uses MSI resources to analyze Illumina datasets. More information about this research can be found on the Gralnick group’s abstract page.

posted on March 31, 2014

On Wednesday, April 2, from 04:00 - 15:00, MSI staff will perform scheduled maintenance and upgrades to the network and various systems.

During this maintenance period, we will be performing the following upgrades:
• The MSI Openstack systems will be upgraded. This will affect some of the Nokomis Virtual Machines.

Systems status is always available on our Status page.

If you have any questions, please email

posted on March 21, 2014

Each year, the University of Minnesota recognizes faculty members for outstanding contributions to postbaccalaureate, graduate, and/or professional education with the Graduate and Professional Teaching Award. The award criteria are: excellence in instruction; involvement in students’ research, scholarship, and professional development; development of instructional programs; and advising and mentoring of students.

Professor Marc Hillmyer (Chemistry) is one of the recipients of the 2014 Graduate and Professional Teaching Award. He is recognized for outstanding achievements to graduate education in chemistry and polymer science. Professor Hillmyer and his research group use MSI for computational calculations that complement their experimental work. More information about this research, including a link to publications by the group, can be found on the Hillmyer group abstract page.

More information about this award, including citations for all this year’s awardees, can be found on the Scholars Walk website.