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New low-temperature chemical reaction explained

Recent research from the research group of Professor

Graduate Research Assistant Ke Yang, Postdoctoral Associates Rubén Meana Pañeda, Ph.D., and John Alecu, Ph.D., and Professor Donald Truhlar are part of a team of researchers who have discovered an unusual chemical reaction important to fuel combustion, atmospheric chemistry, and biochemistry.

According to an article written and published by MIT News, "The newly explained reaction—whose basic outlines had been known for three decades, but whose workings had never been understood in detail—is an important part of atmospheric reactions that lead to the formation of climate-affecting aerosols; biochemical reactions that may be important for human physiology; and combustion reactions in engines."

This reaction may help scientists understand why degradation of biofuels occurs, but could open doors to the discovery of additional reactions and other understandings such as the impact of oxidation on human health.

This research was recently published and spotlighted in the Journal of the American Chemical Society.