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Innsbruck, Austria

Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-ITN | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-2011-ITN | Award Amount: 4.13M | Year: 2012

The need for quantitative and fast identification of trace gaseous compounds in complex chemical matrices continuously pushes the limits of analytical chemistry in many areas of relevance to the EU, including food, health, the environment, and security. A relatively new broad-based and rapidly growing analytical technique, proton transfer reaction mass spectrometry (PTR-MS), combines excellent chemical specification with ultra high detection sensitivity in real-time, but is only partially exploited owing to the lack of a focused research programme in terms of its scientific fundamentals and applications, and owing to a lack of an intersectoral and interdisciplinary based forum for the exchange of ideas and best practice to further develop PTR-MS. The demand for PTR-MS is outstripping the supply of highly qualified chemists who cannot only use the technology, but who also have a broad background in analytical chemistry, and are capable of leading multidisciplinary research/commercial activities. There is an urgent need within Europe for the harmonized training of ESRs in analytical chemistry within many sectors and across many disparate scientific disciplines and applications. The overall goal of this multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary ITN is to train the next generation of analytical scientists in the skills necessary for the development and use of PTR-MS and other analytical technologies (including GC-MS, SIFT-MS and IMS) for the detection of trace gaseous compounds. Our vision is to enhance our understanding of the crucial role these chemicals play in many complex chemical environments and the underpinning science needed to develop techniques to address major analytical challenges. The network is intersectoral in nature combining commercial (both manufacturers and end-users), governmental and academic concerns using a range of state-of-the-art analytical techniques, to address a number of topical analytical issues in an interdisciplinary cooperative.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-ITN | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-2012-ITN | Award Amount: 3.77M | Year: 2012

The aim of CLOUD-TRAIN is to establish a multi-site network of Early Stage Researchers (here predominantly PhD students) and Experienced Researchers at 10 partner institutions across Europe. The role of aerosol nucleation for atmospheric CCN levels, clouds and climate is investigated. The influence of various vapours and ions for aerosol nucleation, growth and cloud processes is studied to significantly improve our understanding of natural and anthropogenic climate forcing as well as feedback mechanisms. The major focus of the network will be three sets of common experiments on ternary nucleation (ion-induced and neutral) and ion-aerosol-cloud interaction carried out at CERN to which all trainees contribute. These experiments are conducted at the newly established unique aerosol chamber CLOUD that is exposed to a CERN ionizing particle beam where the effects of cosmic rays on aerosol and clouds can be efficiently simulated. At the CLOUD chamber nucleation experiments are performed at an unprecedented level of precision and completeness using highly innovative instrumentation. A comprehensive high quality training programme is set up for the fellows. Additional to the experiments at CERN, they are brought together for network training events such as annual summer schools and workshops for integral data analysis. Courses by world leading experts are taught spanning from general aerosol chemistry and physics to specialized sessions. The summer schools and workshops are specifically tailored to the needs of the trainees and are scheduled in addition to the national PhD programmes of their hosting institutions. Comprehensive transferable skills training is included (e.g. scientific writing, presenting talks, interaction with the media, entrepreneurship, IPR, management). Five network partners are from the private sector (2 full, 3 assoc.). Secondments are planned for each fellow to broaden the experience and to include exposure to another sector.


Schausberger P.,University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna | Peneder S.,University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna | Jurschik S.,IONICON Analytik GmbH | Hoffmann D.,University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna
Functional Ecology | Year: 2012

Indirect induced plant defence via emission of herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPV) to recruit natural enemies of herbivores is a ubiquitous phenomenon, but whether and how emission of above-ground HIPVs is adaptively modulated by below-ground mutualistic micro-organisms is unknown. We investigated the effects of the mycorrhizal fungus Glomus mosseae on chemical composition of HIPVs emitted by bean plants Phaseolus vulgaris attacked by spider mites, Tetranychus urticae, using proton-transfer mass spectrometry, and attraction of the spider mites' natural enemy, the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis, to these HIPVs using a Y-tube olfactometer. Mycorrhiza significantly changed the HIPV composition. Most notably, it increased the emission of β-ocimene and β-caryophyllene, two compounds synthesized de novo upon spider mite attack. The constitutively emitted methyl salicylate was increased by spider mite infestation but decreased by mycorrhiza. The predators responded strongly to HIPVs emitted by plants infested for 6days and preferred HIPVs of mycorrhizal plants to those of non-mycorrhizal plants. In contrast, they were less responsive and indiscriminative to mycorrhization when exposed to volatiles emitted by non-infested plants and plants infested by spider mites for 1 or 3days. Our study provides a key example of an adaptive indirect HIPV-mediated interaction of a below-ground micro-organism with an above-ground carnivore. © 2011 The Authors. Functional Ecology © 2011 British Ecological Society. Source


Herbig J.,IONICON Analytik GmbH | Beauchamp J.,Fraunhofer Institute for Process Engineering and Packaging
Journal of Breath Research | Year: 2014

Despite growing interest and considerable progress in breath research over the last decade, standardized practices for the sampling and analysis of breath gas volatiles remain elusive. The primary reasons for this are (a) the rich chemical diversity of exhaled breath that covers an extensive range of volatile organic compounds at highly varied concentrations, (b) the vast disparity in the analytical tools employed, (c) diverse study goals and (d) the presence of (unidentified) confounders. These aspects place stringent but divergent demands on sampling and analysis: each analytical tool, target compound and concentration range requires its own specific protocol and in many cases the latter two are not even known a priori. The ongoing rapid developments and constant discoveries in the field of breath research and the lack of established best practices in breath gas sampling and analysis currently preclude an acceptable overall standardization of these methods. This paper addresses these manifold issues and suggests a framework that separately considers individual stages of sampling and analysis with a view to establishing standardization in the analysis of breath gas volatiles to suit different target compounds and analytical technologies. © 2014 IOP Publishing Ltd. Source


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: H2020 | Program: MSCA-RISE | Phase: MSCA-RISE-2015 | Award Amount: 1.27M | Year: 2016

MARSU is a collaborative (4 Member States , including one participant from the non-academic sector, and six Third Countries from South America, Africa and Asia) with the goal of gaining new knowledge and reducing the uncertainty about the effect of aerosols deriving from the air-sea exchange on climate and atmospheric composition connected to air pollution. The results from this key interdisciplinary project will have impact on current and future industrial and legislative developments. Aerosols and clouds have been identified as one of the largest uncertainties in our understanding of the atmospheric and the climate system. In this context, the MARSU team will conduct experiments in dedicated set-ups throughout the member organisations; combined with efforts in the field to determine the organic composition of aerosol particles and its evolution in the Marine Boundary Layer (MBL) and to come up with a revised picture of the effect of sea salt aerosols on climate. Major gaps of knowledge exist in relation to the organic matter present in aerosol particles, which originates from the organic microlayer at the surface of the ocean. The characterization of the organic content of the aerosol particles, the evolution of the chemical and physical properties, interaction with air pollution and effects on climate-related topics form the foci of this proposal. The MARSU consortium brings together world-leading expert scientists conducting cutting-edge laboratory, simulation chamber studies, field sampling and analysis, analytical method development, and modelling studies. A comprehensive and integrated approach to the development of researchers in the key areas of atmospheric science and their link to the oceans and climate is essential to support industrial and legislative development. MARSU will benefit from the strong involvement of a full partner from the private sector who will host researchers and develop research in close collaboration in other MARSUs partners

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