UBC Okanagan science conference presents public lectures

Two prominent Canadian scientists will receive awards and present free public lectures at UBC Okanagan during the 52nd International Conference on Analytical Sciences and Spectroscopy (ICASS 2006) in Kelowna next week, June 18 to 21.

“We are honoured to be hosting lectures by Dr. Vince Taguchi and Dr. Diethard Bohme, both of whom are highly regarded Canadian researchers who have made great contributions in chemistry and the advancement of science in general,” says Dr. Rob O’Brien, Director of the Okanagan Regional Chemical Analysis Centre and professor of chemistry at UBC Okanagan.

“This is the first time this prestigious international conference has been held in the Okanagan, and we are very proud to welcome our colleagues to UBC Okanagan. Our region offers a tremendous array of activities and venues for guests visiting from around the world.”

Dr. Taguchi, manager of mass spectrometry with the Ontario Ministry of Environment, will deliver the Smiths Detection Award Lecture at 5 p.m. next Monday, June 19, in the lecture theatre (Student Service Centre SSC026).

Taguchi is internationally recognized for identifying toxic chemicals in the environment. He was the first person to show that the carcinogen NDMA could be found in drinking water. NDMA proved difficult to measure because of its properties, however, Taguchi created a way to test drinking water for NDMA – now considered one of the best methods in the world.

Dr. Bohme, Distinguished Research Professor of Chemistry at York University, will deliver the Herzberg Award Lecture in the UBC Okanagan lecture theatre (SSC026) at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 21.

A Canada Research Chair in chemical mass spectrometry, one area of Bohme’s research combines radio astronomy and mass spectrometry to explore the chemical reactions that create amino acids – the building blocks of life -- in the great interstellar clouds between the stars. The Herzberg Award Lecture by Bohme will examine new techniques for studying metal ions using mass spectrometry.

Both Taguchi and Bohme will be honoured at a banquet and awards presentation following the Herzberg Lecture on Wednesday evening.

More than 45 sessions – including several presented by UBC Okanagan researchers -- will be held during the three-day conference. Delegates are coming from as far afield as the Netherlands, Japan, Korea and Zimbabwe.

ICASS Conference Website
http://www.icass2006.ca

Scientific Program at the ICASS Conference at UBC Okanagan
http://www.icass2006.ca/Science.html

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