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Wahab named one of “Top 40 Under 40” analytical scientists in the world by prestigious magazine

Farooq Wahab, a research engineering scientist in the Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry
Farooq Wahab, a research engineering scientist in the Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry

M. Farooq Wahab, a UTA research engineering scientist, was named to the 2018 “Top 40 Under 40” Power List of young analytical scientists by the prestigious British magazine The Analytical Scientist in its October 2018 edition.

Wahab has worked in the lab of Daniel W. Armstrong, the Robert A. Welch Distinguished Professor of Chemistry & Biochemistry, since 2014. Wahab is one of only two members of the 2018 list from a Texas university and is the fourth UTA researcher to appear in the magazine’s Power List edition in its six-year history, joining Armstrong (2013, 2015, 2017), Purnendu “Sandy” Dasgupta (2015, 2017), and Kevin Schug (2014). The magazine selects different categories for its rankings each year.

“I was honored and humbled to be included in this list of the Top 40 Under 40 Scientists in Analytical Chemistry in the world,” he said. “I am very thankful to the UTA community for providing such a wonderful research environment and a supportive atmosphere.”

According to The Analytical Scientist, Wahab achieved the world's fastest separations in 0.5-1 cm homemade columns, and developed peak processing mathematics. This allows chromatographers to operate columns above their peak-capacity, reducing long separations to a few seconds with intact quantitative information even when peaks partially overlap.

"Dr. Wahab is a brilliant young research scientist,” said Armstrong, who nominated Wahab for the honor. “Few have his ability to formulate experiments to better understand chromatography and separation science. This a particularly great honor because it encompasses all analytical sciences worldwide.”

Wahab told The Analytical Scientist that as a child, he wanted to know what things were made of, and this became his early inspiration in science.

“The question of how to determine the elemental composition of materials fascinated me as a young student,” he said. “I collected hundreds of classic texts, including Hillebrand’s Inorganic Analysis and Feigl’s Spot Tests – books that got me addicted to analytical chemistry. At home, I did fluorescence and atomic spectroscopy experiments in my mother’s shoeboxes, and eventually published them.”

A native of Pakistan, Wahab earned a B.Sc. in Chemistry with Honors from the University of Karachi in 2003, an M.Sc. in Analytical Chemistry from the University of Karachi in 2004, and a Ph.D. from the University of Alberta in Canada in 2013. In 2014 he came to UTA and worked for two years as a postdoctoral research associate in Armstrong’s laboratory group.

In 2016, Wahab was named a research engineering associate. He also taught a course in Instrumental Analysis Theory as an adjunct lecturer. Since coming to UTA he has mentored seven senior Ph.D. students which has led to two cover articles in the journal Analytical Chemistry and an article and tutorial in Analytical Chimica Acta.

Wahab’s advice to other young scientists: “Don’t be afraid to make mistakes – this allows you to think outside the box, and science has an excellent self-correction mechanism.”

The Analytical Scientist’s Top 40 Under 40 Power List celebrates the gifted young scientists making waves in analytical science. The 2018 list is comprised of scientists in 12 nations including the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, Japan, France, Italy, Netherlands, Brazil, Taiwan, Malaysia and Luxembourg. The winners were nominated by readers and shortlisted by an independent judging panel.

See the full list at .