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Mass Spectrometrist Burnaby Munson Named AIC Chemical Pioneer

Photonics.com
Mar 2008
BurnabyMunson.jpgUniversity of Delaware (UD) mass spectrometrist Burnaby Munson, PhD, has been named a 2008 Chemical Pioneer by the American Institute of Chemists (AIC), the university announced. The award will be presented May 16 at the Chemical Heritage Foundation building in Philadelphia, where Munson, the C. Eugene Bennett Chair of Chemistry at UD, will make a presentation on his research. AIC cited Munson for co-developing, with Frank H. Field, the technique of chemical ionization mass spectrometry (CIMS). CIMS involves the analytical application of gas phase ion/molecule reactions at "high" pressures for mass spectrometry and is routinely used for characterizing organic compounds, particularly in conjunction with gas chromatography. Munson's research, and that of his students, has been on the thermochemistry, kinetics and analytical applications of gas phase ion/molecule reactions. "I feel I am a pioneer in the field," Munson said. "I published my first paper on mass spectrometry in 1962 and my first paper on chemical ionization in 1966, which was some time ago." Among the honors Munson has received for his research are the American Society for Mass Spectrometry (ASMS) research award (1996), the American Chemical Society's Frank H. Field and Joe L. Franklin Award for outstanding achievement in mass spectrometry (1992), and the Delaware section of the American Chemical Society Award for scientific achievement in chemistry (1992). His research was cited by the Nobel committee in presenting the 2002 Nobel Prize in Chemistry to John Fenn and Koichi Tanaka. In 2004, Munson and Jean Futrell, UD professor emeritus of chemistry and biochemistry, were the first Americans to be honored for their scientific achievements by a special issue of the European Journal of Mass Spectrometry. He has served as president of the ASMS and is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Munson received his bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees from the University of Texas and came to UD in 1967 after working for Esso Research and Engineering Co.


GLOSSARY
mass spectrometry
An instrumental technique that utilizes the mass-to-charge ratio of charged particles as recorded from a mass spectrometer in order to determine the mass of a particle as well as the chemical makeup, or elemental ionic composition of a given sample or molecule.
photonics
The technology of generating and harnessing light and other forms of radiant energy whose quantum unit is the photon. The science includes light emission, transmission, deflection, amplification and detection by optical components and instruments, lasers and other light sources, fiber optics, electro-optical instrumentation, related hardware and electronics, and sophisticated systems. The range of applications of photonics extends from energy generation to detection to communications and...
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