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Caltech President Updates Alums and Friends on the Latest Innovations at Caltech

03-26-2009 07:25 PM CET | Associations & Organizations

Press release from: Caltech Y

New York City, New York— The President of the California Institute of Technology, Dr. Jean-Lou Chameau, spoke to East Coast members of the Caltech Associates President’s Circle, Caltech alumni, and friends in the Central Park West home of Ben and Donna Rosen.

Distinguished Caltech Alumnus Ben Rosen, the founding chairman of Compaq and founding partner of Sevin Rosen Funds, and his wife, Donna Rosen, an advocate for the Arts District of New Orleans, welcomed 39 guests into their beautiful home where members enjoyed magnificent evening views of Central Park and the surrounding city lights.

Speaking about research and faculty accolades at Caltech, Chameau announced that Harry Gray, the Arnold O. Beckman Professor of Chemistry, and Nate Lewis, George L. Argyros Professor and Professor of Chemistry, have received a $20 million award from the National Science Foundation to develop nanoscale materials that capture sunlight and generate power.

Chameau also mentioned that Caltech scientist Changhuei Yang and his colleagues have developed a device they call an optofluidic microscope. The compact device, about the size of a cell phone, has similar resolution and magnifying power to a top-quality optical microscope, and uses sunlight for illumination. Such technologies will allow physicians to perform blood tests in remote areas and third-world countries.

Continuing to discuss topics of technology and sustainability, Chameau stated, “We’re looking at our campus as a laboratory for more sustainable operations. Last November we put up our first solar array on one of the parking structures. This project is part of a campus-wide effort to be as energy and resource-effective as possible.” Chameau also explained that many of the new buildings on Caltech’s campus will be LEED-certified by the U.S. Green Building Council at the gold level, and renovations of older buildings will aim for a gold or platinum rating.

Chameau discussed the effect of the economic downturn on Caltech, outlining budget cuts in specific areas. He focused on Caltech’s solid financial foundation, its success in competing for research funds, and the importance of loyal supporters such as trustees, alumni and friends. Chameau said, “We need to continue supporting the great ideas of our faculty and students, and—believe me—at Caltech there is no shortage of great ideas. We want to provide enough resources to our students and faculty, such that the only limitation to their success is their own imagination. If we do that, Caltech will continue being the place where a few extraordinary people do extraordinary things.”

“This nation, more than ever, needs a place like Caltech, where a few exceptional people can change the world,” said Chameau.

For more information about the Associates and events on the East Coast please visit or contact the Associates at 626-395-3919.

About the Associates: Founded in 1926, the Associates is a support organization for the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) with over 1,475 members throughout the United States and abroad - a diverse cross section of members of the local & business community, Caltech alumni and faculty, and philanthropists.

The Associates of the
California Institute of Technology
M/C 5-32
1200 E. California Blvd.
Pasadena, CA 91125
Contact: Julia J. Cody
(626) 395-2926

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