Nanoblog: "Two hundred nano-scientists met in Jyväskylä at ISSPIC XVIII"

Last week, NSC organized an international conference on “Small Particles and Inorganic Clusters” (www.jyu.fi/isspic18) in the Paviljonki congress center. The conference brought together about 200 researchers from 25 countries for one week, presenting research on various aspects on nanoparticles and nanostructures. The first ISSPIC conference was organized in France 40 years ago in 1976. By now it has been organized in 12 countries in three continents.

The conference highlighted several globally known scientists as plenary speakers. Among them were professors Naomi Halas (Rice University, Houston, a member of the US National Academy of Sciences) and V. Ara Apkarian (UC Irvine) that lectured on plasmonic nanoparticle materials and single-molecule spectroscopy. Apkarian was promoted as a honorary doctor of JYU in the weekend prior to the conference. Prof. Walt de Heer (Georgia Tech, Atlanta) lectured on magnetic atomic clusters and prof. Markku Kulmala (University of Helsinki) on the effect of aerosol particles on the global climate change. A video lecture by 2006 chemistry Nobel Laureate Roger D. Kornberg (Stanford University) addressed the use of gold nanoparticles for imaging of biological systems. A special lecture discussing the discovery and science of the fullerene C60 “soccer ball molecule” was arranged to pay tribute to Sir Harry Kroto (chemistry Nobel Laureate 1996) who recently passed away.

The scientific program included 37 invited talks, 38 short “hot topic” talks, about 100 poster presentations and instrumentation exhibition by five companies. The social program included a boat cruise on Lake Päijänne, which took place on the only sunny day of the conference week, as well as the banquet dinner in hotel Laajavuori.

Next, the conference moves to China, where it will be organized in the city of Hangzhou in August 2018. We have compiled a wiki page (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ISSPIC) that gives a brief overview of the topics and history of ISSPIC.

As the conference chair, I have been very happy that the right to organize ISSPIC XVIII was granted to Jyväskylä in the first place. It shows that our research on atomic clusters and nanoparticles, which started already in 1980’s, is internationally well recognized. Considering the level of the speakers that we were able to attract, this may well have been the scientifically highest-level nanoscience conference ever organized in Finland. I wish to thank all the members of the local organizing committee as well as all the students and post docs who helped us during the conference week.

Academy professor Hannu Häkkinen