April 27, 2016
analytica conference 2016 in Munich
More important than ever
Does additional knowledge make us increasingly uncertain? The best example is food. Health-conscious consumers are just as interested in the natural substances that our food contains as in substances that get there as a result of human activity: Take glyphosate, for example. But how can we find out what substances are in the foods we eat, and in what quantities? The answers lie in analytical chemistry, which will be the focus of analytica, which takes place at the Messe München trade-fair center from May 10 to 13. The analytica conference is being held in conjunction with the world's largest trade fair for laboratory technology for the 12th time.
Analytical separation techniques are one of the focal points of the analytica conference, and for good reason. Before you can definitively identify what materials are in a complex mixture of substances—for example in aroma analysis, to specify the character of a wine—you have to separate the substances from one another, many of which are only present in extremely small quantities. That also applies to plant extracts and coal tar alike.
Whether chromatographic or electrophoretic, these separation techniques have been constantly refined during the past few decades, and they have become increasingly sensitive, precise, reliable and fast. These are the exact attributes that they must have for doping control analyses, for example. Within 24 to 48 hours, not only must the substances be separated from one another, they must also be identified with absolute certainty. And that is usually done using mass spectrometry, which is coupled directly to chromatography. However, performing the analysis and evaluating the results always calls for a specialist, i.e. the analytical chemist. The analytica conference presents the latest trends for him and everyone else who works in analysis laboratories. This year, they include multidimensional techniques in gas and liquid chromatography. After all, when working with complicated samples, getting conclusive analysis results takes more than separating and analyzing a sample in a single processing step. It must be done multiple times, or multidimensionally. That is what makes the conference session titled “Separation techniques: How many dimensions are enough?” so topical. It focuses on intelligent ways to conduct multidimensional separation and analysis on complicated substance mixtures. An exchange of experience and information among colleagues allows scientists to do a better job of solving their own tasks and then tell consumers which foods or substances to avoid, for example.
The presentation of the Eberhard Gerstel Award and the Rudolf Bock Memorial Lecture are embedded in the session. The Eberhard-Gerstel Award is presented to junior scientists for outstanding publications in the field of analytica separation techniques. The award, which is presented every two years and is endowed with EUR 2,000, is sponsored by GERSTEL GmbH & Co. KG, Mülheim an der Ruhr. This year's winner is 27-year-old doctoral candidate Andrea Beutner from the University of Regensburg. In the spring of 2015, “Analytical Chemistry,” an magazine published by the American Chemical Society, published her article about the two-dimensional separation of ionic species by coupling capillary-ion chromatography and capillary electrophoresis with mass spectrometry. This two-dimensional separation system represents an instrumental innovation. The technical significance of her work has since been documented by a recently published patent application.
The Rudolf Bock Memorial Lecture will be held by private lecturer Dr. Wolfgang Dünges, Mainz, an associate of Rudolf Bock's who has met with a great deal of success using micromethods to enrich and separate substances. Among other things, he will report on these methods in his memorial address. In the 1970s, Professor Rudolf Bock published several standard works that depict analytica chemistry in a systematic manner and are still used to this day. He was also highly regarded as an outstanding university professor with a number of successful research works on separation techniques.
The analytica conference takes place at the ICM—Internationales Congress Center München. Admission is free of charge for visitors attending analytica, the International Trade Fair for Laboratory Technology, Analysis and Biotechnology. analytica takes place at the Messe München trade-fair center from May 10 to 13. The schedule for the analytica conference, which takes place from May 10 to 12, is being organized by Forum Analytik, an alliance of three of Germany's leading scientific associations, i.e. the German Chemical Society (GDCh), the Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (GBM) and the German Society for Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (DGKL).