2012 European Users Meeting review

June 25th 2012 to June 27th 2012

The theme for Monday afternoons sessions was software and remote access with presentations such as ‘Reconstruction of Depth Profiles Using Kratos MEM Software’ and the inspiring ‘Remote Access to Instrumentation-The new eResearch Environment at LaTrobe University’.  This session also gave the opportunity to discuss ‘Service and Support Using Webex’ which has been of benefit to many of our users since Kratos started offering remote service and applications support free of charge to those with a service contract.  Attendees were also able to give feedback on the present Vision Acquisition and Processing software as well as comment on ‘Life after Vision’. 
One important aspect of the Users Meetings has always been the opportunity to network and discuss any number of topics informally.  And what better venue than Akbar’s – The North West’s Legendary Pakistani restaurant with naan breads the size of a duvet. 
Tuesday morning was started by talks from two of Europe’s standardisation and metrology labs.  Dr Gross of BAM, Germany presented ‘Chemical Derivatisation XPS : An Interlaboratory Comparison’ and Steve Spenser from NPL, UK highlighted XPS Topofactors : Determining Overlayer Thickness on Particles & Fibres’.  This was followed by two talks relating to the electrical properties of surfaces with Michel Genet presenting ‘Charging Effects in XPS:Diagnostic, Control and Practical Consequences’ and Hagai Cohen of the Weizmann Institute discussing ‘Nano-scale Chemically Resolved Electrical Measurements’ – work which has previously been presented in the journal Nature.  That was before the coffee break.  The grey matter was kept busy after the break with talks from our own applications lab highlighting the possibilities and capability of the modern spectrometer for ‘Parallel Imaging, Spectromicroscopy and CasaXPS’ followed by ‘Multivariate Model for Determination of Bacterial Cell Walls Using the Fast Freezing Technique’ by Madeleine Ramstedt of University of UMEA, Sweden.  The final presentations of the day related to polymeric surface characterisation and modification with Dr Kaufmann’s talk titled ‘H2-plasma modifications on Polymers’ followed by a Kratos presentation on the ‘Coronene Ion Source : Characterisation and Optimisation’.  The remainder of the afternoon was spent in the Applications Lab with practical sessions involving the AXIS Ultra with polyatomic ion source, the AXIS Nova and an introduction and overview of the new MEMs software for reconstruction of concentration depth profiles from AR-XPS data.
With the sun still shining what better way to get to the city centre for dinner than a cruise along the canals which were once used to transport Manchesters other major export – woven cotton?  The boat took us from the Wharfside basin through the Pomona lock onto the Bridgewater canal and into the Castlefield Basin.  Dinner was at Alberts Shed in Castlefield which provided a classic British summer menu and some good wine.
Wednesday morning was kicked off with stand-in presentation from Nico Bovet of the University of Copenhagen titled ‘XPS study of Calcite Interaction with Alcohols’.  Vincent Fernandez then gave the audience a master class in surface chemical characterisation when he presented ‘Core Level and Valence Band PES : Viewing the Different Steps in the Covalent Functionalization via Nitric Acid Purification.  To make the physicists feel uncomfortable even further Ginesa Blanco presented ‘CO oxidation over a Au/CeTbZrOx catalyst-Influence of pre-reduction under H2’.  The final presentation of the meeting from Alan Carrick gave perhaps the most food for thought for both instrument manufacturer and Users alike ‘ISO TC201 – Is Calibration Important?’. 
Those that attended the meeting all felt it was a very worth while exercise and welcomed the opportunity to learn from experiences of other Users.  It was agreed that the next European Users Meeting should be in 2012 and a number of suggestions were made to allow everyone to get even more out of such a meeting.  Most of the talks detailed above have been made available in the Download section of the Members Area, although a number had to be limited due to confidentiality.  All those involved at Kratos Analytical would like to extend our thanks to all those who attended and made the meeting the success it certainly was.  We look forward to further sales and inviting even more Users to the next meeting.