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The Gordon Conference 2010

Sara Gilks

The Gordon Conference 2010 held at Waterville Valley Resort, New Hampshire was the first of its kind to encompass Crystal Engineering.

Author Allan S Myerson led the discussion on Crystallisation Fundamental, while other topics covered in the conference included: The Design of Organic Strategies, Process Chemistry and Scale up (Pharmaceuticals), Polymorphism and Crystal Structure prediction, and Organic Reactions in the Solid State to name just a few.

I had the privilege of meeting Gautam R Desiraju, author of the renowned publication Crystal engineering: the design of organic solids, as well as seeing my project supervisor, Professor Roger J Davey discuss the subject of nucleation, solution chemistry and crystallography, which provided me with an interesting insight into the areas of which I will gradually become accustomed to and confident with over the course of the research programme.

I contributed to the conference by presenting a poster detailing the work I have recently carried out as part of my first year project. The session was allocated as a two hour timeslot in-between science sessions, the entirety of which I spent surrounded by fascinating scientists and pioneering professionals.

I received particularly positive feedback from prospective pharmaceutical companies interested in the novel technique I am in the midst of developing. I have received some suggestions for future development particularly from speaker Dr Peter Vekilov from the University of Houston, who gave a motivating insight into the mechanism of nucleation of crystals in solution which is closely connected to my research. Dr Colin Pulham from the University of Edinburgh introduced me to a new technique which I was unaware of by exploring polymorphism in molecular materials using high pressure techniques, examining pressure induced crystallisation, Dr Pulham also acknowledged the work I am undertaking and made some suggestions particularly within his area of research concerning polymorphism.

Overall, I found the conference extremely beneficial, as a first year PhD student new to the area of research. Attending provided me with an excellent opportunity to widen my knowledge of this particular research area by both networking and attending all seminars scheduled during the visit.

Sara Gilks, Leverhulme Travel Bursar

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