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New Publication Showcases Dozens of UC Merced Inventions

More than 50 discoveries and breakthroughs by world-class faculty highlighted in document issued by UC Merced Office of Research
December 14, 2010

Researchers at the University of California, Merced, have devoted years of hard work to finding solutions to some of the world’s most challenging problems.

The campus’ Office of Research has released a publication that showcases many of those solutions, from technologies that increase the efficiency of solar energy collectors to medical developments that could limit the reproduction of the hepatitis C virus or the spread of HIV to materials that could improve the performance of lithium-ion batteries.

“Inventions” (view PDF here) is a 64-page, full-color document that includes detailed descriptions and stunning photographs illustrating 55 inventions processed from January 2007 to July 2010. The selection includes 16 inventions related to solar energy technology and 12 related to health research.

“A vital element of our public service obligation to the people of California is to ensure that our research discoveries make the responsible transition from idea to application as products or services that benefit the community and our society,” said Sam Traina, vice chancellor for research.

Highlights from “Inventions” include:

  • a number of inventions that increase the efficiency of solar energy collectors, developed by Roland Winston;
  • a solar system that simultaneously offers air conditioning, water heating and power generation, developed by Gerardo Diaz;
  • a treatment technique developed by Jinah Choi and Scott Seronello that may suppress the ability of the hepatitis C liver virus to replicate itself;
  • a low-cost way to encourage production of molecules that speed the recovery of burn victims, improve the quality of life in AIDS patients and fight breast cancer, developed by Matthew Meyer and Hui Zhu;
  • a potential component for topical solutions to prevent the spread of HIV, developed by Patti LiWang;
  • a nanoparticle that could make for an economical, effective alternative to current over-the-counter decongestants, developed by Eric Yi-Tong Chen, Wei-Chun Chin and Yung-Chen Wang;
  • and Jennifer Lu’s polymer-carbon nanotube gel, which would lead to better lithium-ion batteries.

Traina said “Inventions” is a testament to the quality of research being conducted at UC Merced and is even more impressive given the campus’ relatively brief period of existence.

“Our progress compares favorably with that of larger, more established campuses,” Traina said, “especially when you consider that a high percentage of our faculty are assistant professors who are early in their careers.”

To receive a hard copy of “Inventions,” please contact Rich Miller, associate vice chancellor for research, at rmiller4@ucmerced.edu.