Money! Money! Money! (for scholars)

MAS is pleased to announce the call for applications for the Joseph Goldstein Scholar Award, sponsored by the Meteoritical Society and the publisher Springer. This new award is intended to promote career advancement for early career members of the Microanalysis Society, increase interactions of junior and established microanalysts, and to advance the state-of-the-art in microanalysis measurements. Activities eligible for the awards are: (1) travel costs for the Goldstein Scholar to visit a microanalysis facility to make measurements that advance the Goldstein Scholar’s skills and/or the state-of-the-art in microanalysis; (2) Travel costs / fees associated with attendance at a microanalysis school or training course, e.g., Lehigh Microscopy School, Hooke College of Applied Sciences, ASU, etc.. Up to five awards of up to $1000 each will be granted each year, with applications reviewed twice yearly in conjunction with the Winter and Summer Council Meetings. All MAS members who are less than 5 years beyond their terminal degree, and who have not received a Goldstein Scholar award within the prior 5 years, are eligible to apply. A one-time renewal for current awardees who need to make a return visit for additional measurements will be considered, in cases where this will have a clear impact on the results obtained, e.g., equipment failure on the first visit.

The deadline for applications is May 1st, 2019, and the results will be announced on June 15th, 2019. More information can be found here.

Goldstein Scholar Winner – Will Nachlas

NachlasWill Nachlas, a postdoc in the Department of Earth Sciences at Syracuse University, received a Joseph Goldstein Scholar Award to pursue research into the development of trace element mineral standards. Will used the Goldstein Award to visit the Northeast National Ion Microprobe Facility (NENIMF) at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute (WHOI) to collect measurements using the Cameca IMS-1280 secondary ion mass spectrometer (SIMS). In collaboration with researchers at WHOI, Will used the SIMS to test the trace element compositions of a series of synthetic crystals grown from high pressure-temperature crystallization experiments.

SIMS is the premier technique for high spatial and mass resolution quantitative analysis. This method enables concentrations to be determined at the parts per million level from micron-sized regions of solid samples. However, quantitative measurements using SIMS rely on matrix-matched standard materials that contain the analyte of interest at multiple different concentrations. With new developments in trace element-based petrologic techniques, there is increasing demand for standard materials suitable for instrument calibration. To this end, Will has been working to synthesize crystalline material with specific, homogeneous trace-level concentrations that can be distributed to the community for use as trace element mineral standards. However, this effort began as a “side project”, and it was delayed by lack of funds needed to acquire the SIMS data. With support from the Microanalysis Society through a Goldstein Scholar Award, it became possible to acquire the data necessary to advance this research.

The Goldstein Scholar Award provides an excellent opportunity for early career scientists to pursue self-directed research and foster collaborations as an independent researcher. The ability to craft a research proposal to support individual research efforts is an empowering and motivating experience. With funding support provided by a Goldstein Award, Will was able to complete a major component of the necessary analytical work to move his work towards publication. Preliminary results of this research, including measurements obtained on the ion probe at WHOI, were recently presented in an invited presentation in session A09 – Standards, Reference Materials, and Their Applications in Quantitative Microanalysis at the 2017 Microscopy & Microanalysis meeting in St. Louis.