Xenia Amashukeli

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The Urey organic and oxidant detector consists of a suite of instruments designed to search for several classes of organic molecules in the martian regolith and ascertain whether these compounds were produced by biotic or abiotic processes using chirality measurements. These experiments will also determine the chemical stability of organic molecules within(More)
[1] Amino acids are considered organic molecular indicators in the search for extant and extinct life in the Solar System. Extraction of these molecules from a particulate solid matrix, such as Martian regolith, will be critical to their in situ detection and analysis. The goals of this study were to optimize a laboratory amino acid extraction protocol by(More)
The Mars Organic Analyzer (MOA) has enabled the sensitive detection of amino acid and amine biomarkers in laboratory standards and in a variety of field sample tests. However, the MOA is challenged when samples are extremely acidic and saline or contain polyvalent cations. Here, we have optimized the MOA analysis, sample labeling, and sample dilution(More)
Inner-sphere electron-transfer reorganization energies of Zn(protoporphyrin IX) and Zn(octaethylporphyrin) are determined from band-shape analyses of the first ionization obtained by gas-phase valence photoelectron spectroscopy. The experimentally determined total inner-sphere reorganization energies for self-exchange (120-140 meV) indicate that structural(More)
[1] The Urey in situ organic compound analysis instrument, consisting of a subcritical water extractor (SCWE) and a portable microchip capillary electrophoresis instrument called the Mars Organic Analyzer (MOA), was field tested in the Atacama Desert, Chile, in June 2005. Soil samples from the most arid Yungay region were collected, biomarkers were(More)
The fluorescent amine reactive probe Pacific Blue succinimidyl ester (PB) is used for the detection of trace amounts of amines and amino acids by microchip capillary electrophoresis on the Mars Organic Analyzer (MOA). The spectral and chemical properties of PB provide a 200-fold increase in sensitivity and improved resolution compared to fluorescamine(More)
A fully integrated solar-driven water-splitting system comprised of WO3 /FTO/p(+) n Si as the photoanode, Pt/TiO2 /Ti/n(+) p Si as the photocathode, and Nafion as the membrane separator, was simulated, assembled, operated in 1.0 M HClO4 , and evaluated for performance and safety characteristics under dual side illumination. A multi-physics model that(More)
Abstract Technologies that enable rapid and efficient extraction of biomarker compounds from various solid matrices are a critical requirement for the successful implementation of in situ chemical analysis of the martian regolith. Here, we describe a portable subcritical water extractor that mimics multiple organic solvent polarities by tuning the(More)
We describe a sample-processing micro-reactor that utilizes 60 GHz RF radiation with approximately 730 mW of output power. The instrument design and performance characterization are described and then illustrated with modeling and experimental studies. The micro-reactor's efficiency on affecting hydrolysis of chemical bonds similar to those within large(More)
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