16 Jul 2014
Emma Kastrisianaki-Guyton was awarded a Rideal Bursary in May 2014. Here she talks about her experience of presenting at the 88th ACS Colloid and Surface Science Symposium.
In February 2014, I submitted an abstract to present my work at the 88th ACS Colloid and Surface Science Symposium, which was being held at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. My abstract, entitled Adsorption of surfactants onto single-walled carbon nanotubes was accepted for an oral presentation. Subsequently I was awarded a travel bursary from the SCI-RSC Rideal Trust Committee to help with the costs of attending this conference.
The conference ran from the 22 - 25 June, and included plenary and award lectures, a poster session and technical sessions, which gave postgraduate students the opportunity to present in the same sessions as much more experienced researchers. In total there were over 700 contributions in the form of oral or poster presentations, so the scope of the conference was very broad and thus enabled me to attend sessions on a wide range of relevant and interesting topics.
The plenary speakers were David Weitz (Harvard University), who talked about his research on microfluidic devices and their use in making very monodisperse yet complex colloidal particles, and Daan Frenkel (University of Cambridge), who gave a lecture on computer simulations of DNA-coated colloidal particles. There were also award lectures from Daeyeon Lee (University of Pennsylvania) on the properties of Janus particles at interfaces and Daniel Beltran-Villegas, on his work using computer modelling to study self-assembly.
The conference was attended by a wide range of researchers and so included many different research topics. There were fifteen parallel sessions in topics including biocolloids and biointerfaces, self-assembly, rheology and surface forces, among many others. I attended sessions on molecular self-assembly, interactions, particles at interfaces, nanoparticles, rheology and dynamics and polymers and scattering. During these sessions I listened to many interesting and relevant talks, including using Auger spectroscopy to characterise amorphous carbon, using solvent relaxation NMR to study the adsorption on carbon surfaces, and two talks by J. Fagan (National Institute of Standards and Technology) who works on the colloidal properties of single-walled carbon nanotubes and using aqueous two-phase systems to partition them.
My presentation was scheduled during one of the molecular self-assembly sessions, and this was the first time I have had the opportunity to present the results of my PhD at a conference. I was also able to learn a lot about the other research going on in the wider colloid community.
I am grateful to the SCI-RSC Rideal Trust for giving me the opportunity to attend such a large international conference, which included many interesting and relevant presentations.
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