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Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies

SAS Atomic Section Student Award

In 2019, the Society for Applied Spectroscopy (SAS) and the SAS Atomic Technical Section will honor up to 4 students with the inaugural SAS Atomic Spectroscopy Student Award. This award will be given to students (undergraduate or graduate) who have excelled in the area of Atomic Spectroscopy.

Students selected for this award will be required to present their work as an oral presentation at SciX 2019 which will be held in Palm Springs, California on October 13-18, 2019. The award will come with travel assistance (> $500) and a 2 year SAS membership after graduation. To apply or recommend a student, please submit the following materials: 1) Letter of recommendation from the student’s advisor, 2) one-page letter from the student highlighting their accomplishments/credentials and how their research impacts the field of atomic spectroscopy, and 3) scientific abstract for work they would present if chosen. Documents should be emailed to Derrick Quarles and Ben Manard at atomic.section@s-a-s.org no later than March 1, 2019 with award winners being notified by the beginning of April.

Students that apply for the award either need to be an SAS member or they can register at the time of submission. Student memberships can be completed online (https://www.s-a-s.org/sas/join/index.html?action=sas&sas_activity=membership) or by phone (+1-301-694-8122).

2019 Winners

Carlos Abad

Dr. Carlos Abad is currently a postdoctoral associate at the Federal Institute for Material Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM) in Germany.  Dr. Abad earned his B.S. in Chemistry at the Universidad Central de Venezuela in Caracas, Venezuela, and its German equivalency at the Georg-August-Universität in Göttingen, Germany. He attended the Graduate School of Analytical Sciences Adlershof (SALSA) and received in spring 2019 his Ph.D. in analytical sciences with honors at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. Dr. Abad was a visiting scientist at the Leibniz-Institute for Analytical Science (ISAS) in Berlin, Germany between 2015-2018 and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) in 2018. During his Ph.D., under the supervision of Dr. Norbert Jakubowski and Prof. Dr. Ulrich Panne, he developed a great passion for spectrochemical analysis by using optical and mass spectrometry. His research interests focus on the development and application of optical spectrometry of transient diatomic molecules for trace analysis of non-metals and stable isotope analysis. Besides lab’s work, Dr. Abad is an active science communicator and a member of the Society for Applied Spectroscopy since 2017.

Ingo Strenge

Ingo Strenge is currently a final year Ph.D. candidate in Chemistry at the University of Siegen, Germany under the guidance of Prof. Carsten Engelhard. Prior to his graduate studies, he earned a B.S. and a M.S. degree in Chemistry from the University of Muenster, Germany. Ingo’s research focuses on improving methods and instrumentation for the detection and characterization of single nanoparticles (NPs) using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). He developed novel data acquisition and processing concepts to overcome current limitations of ICP-MS platforms such as insufficient time-resolution, finite measurement duration, low duty cycle, and other measurement artifacts known to occur in the realm of single-particle ICP-MS (spICP-MS). The benefits of this approach are significant and summarized in his key publication, which was also featured as one of the “Top 30 Most Accessed JAAS Articles in 2016”. His advances in spICP-MS could be merged into concurrent studies within the group and resulted in the publication of three additional peer-reviewed papers. Eventually, it enabled the analysis of NPs by means of on-line fractionation/separation, providing an additional layer of information while allowing for a thorough characterization of NPs at environmentally relevant concentration levels. Ingo presented his work at national and international conferences in Europe and the US with several poster and oral talks. Currently he works at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (Gaithersburg, MD), where he continues his research but also helps to establish, evaluate, and improve microsecond time resolved spICP-MS within their laboratories.

Joseph Lesniewski

Joseph E. Lesniewski is a PhD student at Georgetown University, where he works under the guidance of Dr. Kaveh Jorabchi. Prior to his work at Georgetown, he was twice awarded a Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF), which supported his research at the National Institute of Technology (NIST) headquarters in Gaithersburg, MD. While at the NIST Center for Neutron Research (NCNR) his work applied Bayesian statistics to automation of data analysis of neutron and x-ray diffraction data. At Georgetown University, Joseph’s work has focused on addressing high-sensitivity elemental quantification of non-metals,such as chlorine and fluorine, for facile quantification of analytes without compound-specific standards. Such analyses are challenging using the current state-of-the-art elemental MS technique, ICP-MS, because of low ionization efficiency of Cl and F in the ICP and occurrence of isobaric polyatomic interferences.  Joseph’s work has addressed these problems through the development of a new elemental ionization approach where an ICP is used to convert analytes into element-specific neutrals followed by chemical ionization in the atmospheric-pressure afterglow. This method, termed plasma assisted reaction chemical ionization (PARCI), offers improved ionization efficiency and reduced isobaric interferences for F and Cl, while facilitating high-sensitivity elemental analysis using widely available molecular mass spectrometers. Joseph has demonstrated the application of this technique in quantification of infant formula fluoride content. He hopes to further improve sensitivity of non-metal elemental analyses through exploring new ionization chemistries, and to expand the applications of elemental quantification in environmental and pharmaceutical investigations.

Htoo Paing

Htoo Paing is a current 4th year graduate student in analytical chemistry under the mentorship of Dr. Kenneth Marcus at Clemson University. Htoo works to develop the Liquid Sampling Atmospheric Pressure Glow Discharge Plasma (LS-APGD) as a miniature ionization/excitation source for various applications from nuclear security to pharmaceutical analysis. His research hopes to deconvolute some of mechanisms and processes occurring in the LS-APGD as well as developing methods to improve the analytical performance of the LS-APGD. For his work with ambient desorption LS-APGD, Htoo has most recently been awarded the “Innovations in Nuclear Technology R&D Award” from the Department of Energy. After graduation, Htoo wishes to pursue a career in academia. Htoo spends his time away from the lab playing soccer, playing boardgames sometimes unironically about doing research, and fish keeping.


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