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Apply now: PhD program funded by IONICON and FEM

INTRANEF – More analytical performance for agroindustrial applications

Fondazione Edmund Mach (FEM) and IONICON are funding a PhD program in Physics at the University of Milan on the improvement of the analytical performance of PTR-MS in agroindustrial applications. The project is called “INTRANEF” for INcreasing ThRoughput and ANalytical Efficency of direct injection mass spectrometry for agroindustrial applications.

The call is now open and interested candidates can apply until 01:00 pm of September 4th, 2017

About the PhD position

Direct injection mass spectrometric analysis (DIMS) of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) is gaining wider attention due to the recent significant technological advancements in mass spectrometry. FEM is recognised as one of the leader institutions in this field and demonstrated the viability and interest of this methodology, of PTR-MS in particular, and the possibility of the high throughput, highly sensitive and non-invasive screening of large sample sets which is fundamental in fields such as phenomics, and genomics and a key enabling-condition for quality control in agroindustry.
There are, however, well known limitations in DIMS, like its monodimensionality (lack of separation) and the difficulties arising in case of very high concentration of given molecules, such as ethanol in the case of alcoholic beverages.
IONICON, as the world’s leading PTR-MS company, co-funds this exclusive PhD position in order to further improve the performance of IONICON technologies and products in interesting areas such as agroindustrial applications.
This project aims at extending the capability of the PTR-MS based facility at FEM towards an ultra-fast direct injection method (less than three minutes per sample) with improved analytical capabilities in terms of sensitivity, separation and automation. This objective will be achieved by the interplay of existing apparatus (PTR-TOFMS, auto-sampler), the optimization or implementation of new tools (fastGC, ION-BOOSTER funnel technology) and the optimization of software and automation procedures.
The performance of the developed set-up will be tested both on artificial VOCs mixtures and on VOCs associated with real systems of interest for FEM and the partner institutions. Beer is proposed as a challenging case study because of the growing technical and commercial interest in craft beer non only worldwide but also in Trentino.

This PhD student position will be a collaborative effort of the University of Milan (Prof. Paolo Piseri), the University of Otago (Prof. Patrick Silcock) and the Fondazione Edmund Mach (Dr. Franco Biasioli). Follow this link for more information on the application.

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