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Pittcon 2017 in Chicago

More than 17,000 attendees are expected to attend annual conference and expo on lab science

by Linda Wang
March 6, 2017 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 95, Issue 10

Photo of Chicago.
Credit: Shutterstock

The 2017 Pittsburgh Conference & Exposition (Pittcon) will be held on March 5–9 at McCormick Place in Chicago.

Pittcon at a glance

Dates: March 5–9

Location: McCormick Place, Chicago

Information contacts: Program,; Exposition,; General information,


Pittcon’s core focus is analytical chemistry and applied spectroscopy, with applications in fields including life sciences, drug discovery, food safety, nanotechnology, water and air analysis, and environmental issues.

The conference, which annually attracts more than 14,000 attendees from industry, academia, and government from 90 countries worldwide, is sponsored by the Spectroscopy Society of Pittsburgh and the Society for Analytical Chemists of Pittsburgh.

As of Feb. 20, Pittcon 2017 has approximately 785 exhibitors registered to appear at more than 1,400 booths. Some 2,000 technical presentations and more than 100 short courses are planned.

All conference information, including details about registration and housing, is on the web at

Registration for the entire conference costs $325 for regular attendees and $50 for full-time students with a valid ID. One-day registration is $150, and Thursday is a free day. Expo-only registration is $100.

The American Chemical Society’s Division of Analytical Chemistry (ANYL) is again providing programming at Pittcon. Its invited symposia are titled “Analytical Advances in Sustainable and Safe Nanotechnology,” “Advances in Biomolecule Quantitation by Mass Spectrometry,” “Ion Mobility: Adding New Dimensions,” “Analyzing Chemical Signals across Biological Kingdoms,” and “Mid-Scale Instrumentation Programs in the Chemical Sciences.”

The division will also hold an award symposium for the Satinder Ahuja Award for Young Investigators in Separation Sciences and an analytical poster session.

Karl Deisseroth, D.H. Chen Professor of Bioengineering and of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University, will deliver the Wallace H. Coulter Lecture at 5 PM on Sunday, March 5. His talk is titled “Integrated Brainwide Structural & Functional Analysis.” A free mixer will follow the lecture.

The 28th James L. Waters Symposium will recognize the history, science, and applications of the technologies developed by Illumina, and it will take place at 1:30 PM on Monday, March 6. The speakers will be David R. Walt, University Professor at Tufts University; Jay Flatley, executive chair of Illumina; Jim Goldberg, chief medical officer at Counsyl; Daniel S. Grosu, who was chief medical officer at Sequenom before it was acquired by LabCorp; and Alex Aravanis, head of the research and development group at GRAIL.

Conferee networking sessions provide an informal venue for a small group of participants to openly discuss topics of mutual interest or solve problems specific to certain instrumentation or procedures. These unique 90-minute networking opportunities begin on Sunday and run through Wednesday afternoon and are open to all registered conferees at no extra cost.

Exposition. The exposition provides attendees with hands-on access to instrumentation, laboratory apparatuses, and other lab-related products and services. Hours are 9 AM to 5 PM on Monday, March 6, through Wednesday, March 8, and 9 AM to 3 PM on Thursday, March 9.

Awards. This year at Pittcon, 14 awards will be presented by various organizations to recognize scientists who have made outstanding contributions to analytical chemistry and applied spectroscopy.

Charles N. Reilley Award of the Society for Electroanalytical Chemistry: Juan M. Feliu, professor of physical chemistry at the University of Alicante

Chromatography Forum of Delaware Valley Dal Nogare Award: András Guttman, head of the Horváth Csaba Laboratory of Bioseparation Sciences at the University of Debrecen and senior applications manager at SCIEX

Coblenz Society/ABB-sponsored Bomem-Michelson Award: Keith Nelson, Haslam & Dewey Professor of Chemistry at Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Joseph Black Award of the Royal Society of Chemistry: Kirsty Penkman, senior lecturer in analytical chemistry at the University of York

LCGC Emerging Leader in Chromatography Award: Deirdre Cabooter, associate professor of chemistry at the University of Leuven

LCGC Lifetime Achievement in Chromatography Award: Pat Sandra, founder of the Research Institute for Chromatography in Belgium

Pittcon Heritage Award: Robert J. Warren, president emeritus of LECO Corp.

Pittsburgh Analytical Chemistry Award: Janusz Pawliszyn, University Professor at the University of Waterloo

Pittsburgh Conference Achievement Award: Paul Dauenhauer, associate professor of chemical engineering and materials science at the University of Minnesota; and Renã A. S. Robinson, assistant professor of chemistry at the University of Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh Spectroscopy Award: Edward I. Solomon, Monroe E. Spaght Professor of Chemistry at Stanford University

Ralph N. Adams Award in Bioanalytical Chemistry: Robert T. Kennedy, Willard Professor of Chemistry and Professor of Pharmacology at the University of Michigan

Royce W. Murray Award from the Society for Electroanalytical Chemistry: Joaquin Rodriguez-Lopez, assistant professor of chemistry at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

Satinder Ahuja Award for Young Investigators in Separation Sciences: Omar K. Farha, research professor of chemistry at Northwestern University

Williams Wright Award from the Coblentz Society: Slobodan Sasic, senior research investigator at SSCI/AMRI

Nominations are also being solicited for four of Pittcon’s 2018 awards:

Pittsburgh Analytical Chemistry Award. The award includes a cash prize and reimbursement of travel costs to Pittcon. The honor recognizes significant contributions to the field of analytical chemistry, including the introduction of a significant technique, theory, or instrument, and the provision of exceptional training or a fertile environment for progress in analytical chemistry. Nominations are due by April 30.

Pittsburgh Conference Achievement Award. This award recognizes outstanding achievements in analytical chemistry or applied spectroscopy. To be eligible for the 2018 award, nominees must have completed their Ph.D. on or after March 1, 2007. Nominations are due by April 30.

Pittsburgh Spectroscopy Award. This award honors outstanding contributions in the field of applied spectroscopy. Nominations are due by April 30.

Ralph N. Adams Award in Bioanalytical Chemistry. This award recognizes significant contributions to the field of bioanalytical chemistry, broadly defined. The recipient must have introduced a significant technique, theory, instrument, or application important to the life sciences and have provided an exceptional environment to educate bioanalytical chemists. Nominations are due by May 1.

Visit the Pittcon website for more information about these awards.

Employment. Pittcon offers a free Employment Bureau service during the meeting. The bureau provides a venue for candidates to review active job openings and for employers to review candidate credentials and résumés. Candidates and employers should bring their own computer or other devices for accessing the internet and e-mail. Candidates must bring printed and electronic résumés in searchable PDF or Word format, preferably stored on a USB flash drive. The Employment Bureau will be located in West Building of McCormick Place. More details are available at

Short courses. The Pittcon 2017 Short Course Program will consist of more than 100 courses on more than 60 topics, including life and pharmaceutical sciences, quality assurance, and food safety. Details can be found at Registration fees range from $425 for half-day courses to $1,500 for two-day courses. Students get a 50% discount. Attendees of three paid courses receive free conference registration. 


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