Dr. Zi-Ling (Ben) Xue with co-researchers Julia K.C. Abbott (in picture) and Liting Li have fitted the last piece in the chemical puzzle that led to a Nobel Prize in chemistry for Richard Schrock. In a paper published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society and covered by Chemical Engineering News, Xue and company confirmed that pentaneopentyltantalum is a precursor compound in the formation of tantalum alkylidene, one of the little known but crucial components in the chemistry of olefin metathesis catalysis. Xue had made a fleeting identification of the substance in his research 14 years ago but just recently confirmed its existence. Click to view the manuscript.