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Quantel to organize LIBS in Undergraduate Research and Teaching Workshop

Juniata College in Huntingdon, PA on October 10-11, 2014

17 September 2014 Back


10-14 Oct.: Quantel Laser is co-sponsoring a free workshop on LIBS with Andor Technologies for faculty, post docs and students who are interested in incorporating laser induced breakdown spectroscopy into their undergraduate curriculum.

The second annual workshop on Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy in Undergraduate Research and Teaching (LIBS-URT 2014) will be held at Juniata College in Huntingdon, PA on October 10-11, 2014. Sponsorship for this free workshop is provided by Quantel Lasers, Andor Technology and the NSF-sponsored Chemistry Collaborations, Workshops and Community of Scholars (cCWCS) program.
LIBS-URT 2014 is free and open to interested educators, faculty, post-docs and students from a number of different fields, including chemistry, physics, geology, materials science and engineering.
Hotel costs will also be reimbursed and a free copy of Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy: Theory and Applications (Eds. Musazzi and Perini, 2014) will provided to the first thirty (30) registrants.
Additional details and registration instructions are available at


Early exposure to research is an important aspect of undergraduate science education. It encourages students to think critically and creatively about a specific task using scientific methods to approach problems in a logical manner. LIBS is a very flexible, atomic emission spectroscopic technique which is ideal for use in the undergraduate setting. High level spectroscopic data can be acquired quickly which allows it to be used in a rotation of laboratory-based coursework, or more in-depth LIBS studies can be performed for semester or year-long based research projects. Basic laboratory skills, as well as practical scientific instrumentation experience, will be acquired by the student using the LIBS technique. The goal of this workshop is to provide a venue for colleagues who might be interested in learning more about this technique. It is provided as an educational outreach program by the sponsoring companies and organizations listed above.


A number of researchers have successfully conducted LIBS-based projects with undergraduates. Professor Richard Hark, the host and one of the organizers of this workshop, is the Chair of the Department of Chemistry at Juniata College. As a professor at a primarily undergraduate institution (PUI), he has a vast amount of experience introducing LIBS into the undergraduate curriculum and is a respected author of a number of LIBS-related publications. The other organizers of LIBS-URT 2014 are Dr. Colin Ingram from Andor Technology and Dr. Diane Wong from Quantel Lasers. As experts in the field of LIBS and spectroscopy, they will discuss the practical aspects of choosing the correct equipment and the training of undergraduates for a successful LIBS experiment.

Workshop Agenda
LIBS is a spectroscopic technique that is quickly gaining acceptance in scientific, industrial and military applications. We are currently on the cusp of an exponential growth in its acceptance as a proven analytical technique. LIBS has been used to perform analysis in such diverse locations as outer space on the Mars Rover, during deep sea "inner space" explorations and everywhere in between. The two keynote speakers for this workshop will be Frederick Sonnichsen from Woods Hole Oceanographic

Institute and Darby Dyar from Mount Holyoke College. They will be discussing their experience with "Using LIBS from Inner Space to Outer Space" at LIBS-URT 2014. 

The following topics and discussion will be covered during this workshop:

- LIBS fundamentals and instrumentation 
- LIBS applications
- Research funding opportunities for undergraduate institutions
- Laser safety for undergraduates
- Laboratory demonstrations
- Discussions of introducing LIBS into the undergraduate curriculum

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