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The CNIRS is proud to announce that this year’s winner of the Gerald S. Birth Award for best work in diffuse spectroscopy published in 2012 to 2013 is Dr. Donald J. Dahm. He is receiving recognition for his papers, “Explaining some light scattering properties of milk using representative layer theory”, published in J. Near Infrared Spectroscopy 21, 323–339 (2013), and “Separating the effects of scatter and absorption using the representative layer” by Kevin D. Dahm and Donald J. Dahm, J. Near Infrared Spectroscopy 21, 351–357 (2013). In these papers, a new definition of absorbance is presented, applicable to samples that scatter light, along with a scheme to extract the “Beer’s Law” absorbance from a combination of transmission and remission data. The first paper is a refereed review of the spectroscopy of milk, as an example of light scattering liquids and illustrating the effects of concentrations of absorbers in the scattering particles or in the liquid phase, interpreted using the representative layer theory that Donald has been developing for many years. This review includes an explanation of how his theory may be considered an outgrowth of Raleigh or Mie scattering theory. It is an application and development of the ideas presented in the book published in 2007, "Interpreting Diffuse Reflectance and Transmittance. A Theoretical Introduction to Absorption Spectroscopy of Scattering Materials", by Donald and his son Kevin. The review uses practically no mathematical formulas. The important formulas are presented in the second paper, which complete the presentation of the use of the representative layer theory, and shows how the properties of absorption and scattering affect each other. Example calculations and a summary of earlier publications of equations involving scattering are presented. The review demonstrates Donald's careful study of Gerry Birth's work and the passion to understand the interaction between light and particles that Gerry and Donald shared. The award and a lecture by Donald as part of a special symposium will be presented at the 17th International Conference on Diffuse Reflectance (IDRC) at Chambersburg, PA August 2-8, 2014. The award includes a trophy and honorarium sponsored by Unity Scientific, Inc.
Dr. Dahm received a B.A. degree in Chemistry and Mathematics at Central College, Pella, Iowa, and was awarded his Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry at Iowa State University, Ames, IA. He is currently a professor at Rowan University, Glassboro, New Jersey. In 2004 he received the Outstanding Achievement in Near Infrared Spectroscopy Award from the Eastern Analytical Symposium. He is a highly regarded teacher, and in 2011 he was selected by Rowan students as the professor they wished to give “The Last Lecture,” an annual event based on Randy Pausch’s book, where professors are asked to speak about “Life Lessons” rather than their technical area.

Past winners include:
2004 Peter R. Griffiths
2006 Yukihiro Ozaki
2008 James Burger
2010 David H. Burns
2012 Michael L. Myrick

The CNIRS is proud to announce this year’s winners of the Travel Awards in support of attending the 17th International Diffuse Reflectance Conference at Chambersburg, PA August 2 to 8, 2014. This year six students or recent graduates will receive reimbursement for one-half of their travel expenses, plus registration for the conference, which includes room and board at the Conference venue, Wilson College. The students have submitted statements of why they would like to attend the Conference, and they will present posters of their work.

Dr. George Bázár is a post-doctoral researcher with Roumiana Tsenkova at Kobe University, Japan. He applied NIR and electronic nose techniques for qualifying agricultural and food products at Kaposvár University, Hungary, where his Ph.D. thesis advisor was Róbert Romvári and he was mentored by Károly Kaffka. Presently he is pursuing NIR spectroscopy in the field of aquaphotomics and investigates various biological systems through water spectral interactions.

Heather J. Boyce is a graduate student under the guidance of Stephen Hoag in the School of Pharmacy, University of Maryland Baltimore. She expects to graduate in May, 2017, implementing NIR spectroscopy to assess the physical properties of pharmaceutical excipients and to predict pharmaceutical oral dosage form performance.

Anina Guelpa is a third year PhD student at the Department of Food Science, Stellenbosch University, South Africa under the supervision of Marena Manley. She has studied the determination of maize hardness using NIR spectroscopy and hyperspectral imaging.

Ryan Lerud is in the PhD program at Portland State University, being co-advised by Peter Moeck of the Physics Department and Shankar Rananavare of the Chemistry Department. Currently he has been using multivariate statistics to develop a sub $1000 NIR/Vis Portable Fruit Quality Meter, as part of his Masters thesis and on-going internship with CID Bio-Science, Camas, WA.

Jacky Zhongqiang Lin is a fourth year PhD student in the School of Pharmacy, University of Maryland, under the supervision of Stephen Hoag. He is studying the curing process of ethylcellulose pseudolatex films using NIR spectroscopy. He has had internships for 2 summers at Abbvie Inc, North Chicago, IL.

Anastasiia Melenteva is a third year PhD student in the Samara State Technical University, Faculty of Food Production, Samara, Russia. Her current research concerns the development of a global model for milk analysis based on the phenomenon of scatter. She has published seven papers on the Visible and NIR spectroscopy of milk, each with Andrey Bogomolov of J&M Analytik AG, Essingen-Aalen, Germany and one of those was also co-authored with Donald Dahm, of Rowan University, Glassboro, NJ, who is this year’s Gerald S. Birth Awardee.

The International Diffuse Reflectance Conference is convened every two years. The late Dr. Gerald S. Birth was the founder of the IDRC (“The Chambersburg Conference”), now sponsored by the CNIRS. The Chambersburg Conference follows the “Gordon Conference” format: the attendees attend plenary morning and evening sessions, with afternoons free for elective activities. This allows a unique opportunity for informal interaction with highly accomplished professionals in the field. Since 1982, this conference has offered the opportunity to forge lifelong professional relationships and friendships.