UTA researcher paper cited as landmark by colleague in Analytical Scientist

Tuesday, Mar 12, 2019 • Media Contact : Herb Booth

Ken Broekhoven, a 40 under 40 winner at European-based The Analytical Scientist magazine, chose one of UTA’s Purnendu “Sandy” Dasgupta’s papers as one of the most influential papers published in 2018.

Purnendu "Sandy" Dasgupta
Purnendu "Sandy" Dasgupta, Hamish Small Chair of Ion Analysis at UTA

Broekhoven is an associate professor of chemical engineering at Vrije Universiteit Brussel in Brussels, Belgium.

Broekhoven, as were all the 40-under-40 winners, asked which paper had the greatest impact on him. Broekhoven mentioned a Dasgupta paper titled “Flow-cell-induced dispersion in flow-through absorbance detection systems: true column effluent peak variance” from 2018.

Dasgupta is the Hamish Small Chair in Ion Analysis in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. He has been at The University of Texas at Arlington since 2007.

“I was very honored,” Dasgupta said. “It’s especially humbling when a colleague says your work was important to them. I’m glad my paper and its findings meant something to a colleague.”

The paper concerned Dasgupta’s major research areas of chromatography, which is the separation of a material into as many components as possible. Among other components, a detector is placed at the end of a column to help separate large number of individual constituents in a sample. He said one of the challenges of chromatography is the detector which is essentially the component that “watches” the separation, itself causes some mixing and deteriorates the separation. The phenomenon is well recognized but since the detector is the agent which reports the separation, the degree to which the separation is being compromised is not exactly known. As Broekhoven has titled his note, Who watches the watchman? In this paper Dasgupta provides a way to quantitatively estimate how much the watchman is stealing and possibly how to correct for it.

Dasgupta said his paper is applicable to many areas of chromatography, including pharmaceutical testing, food chemistry, chemical analysis and others.

Dasgupta’s work at UTA has led to many awards, in the last four years:

  • He was named the 2018 Distinguished Texas Scientist of the Year by the Texas Academy of Science
  • Received the Chemical Instrumentation Award from the American Chemical Society in 2018
  • Named one of the top 10 inventors in The Analytical Scientist 2017 Power List.
  • Earned the 2017 Talanta Medal, an international award that recognizes world leaders in the analytical chemistry field, he was the 4th American ever to receive this honor..
  • Received the 2016 Tech Titan Inventor award for being a “patent-making machine.”
  • Received the 2016 Eastern Analytical Symposium’s highest award, an award for Outstanding Achievements in the Fields of Analytical Chemistry.
  • Received the 2015 J. Calvin Giddings Award for Excellence in Education from the American Chemical Society Division of Analytical Chemistry. The national award recognizes a scientist who has enhanced the professional development of analytical chemistry students, developed and published innovative experiments, designed and improved equipment or teaching labs and published influential textbooks or significant articles on teaching analytical chemistry.
  • Elected a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, the highest membership distinction in the international organization of 430,000 engineers, scientists and other professionals. 

In addition, Dasgupta has received grants totaling millions of dollars in his UTA career from funding institutions such as NASA, the National Science Foundation, the state of Texas and others.