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Bob Pirok, PhD student at the Van 't Hoff Institute for Molecular Sciences, has won the Journal of Chromatography A Young Scientist Award. It was presented to him at the 42nd International Symposium on Capillary Chromatography, held in Riva del Garda (Italy). This is Bob's fourth international award.

Bob Pirok. Photo: HPLC2017.

Bob Pirok has just entered his fourth year as a PhD student in the MAnIAC project led by Ron Peters and Peter Schoenmakers and supported by Shell, DSM, Heineken and Micronit. He excels in Making Analytically Incompatible Approaches Compatible, which is what MAnIAC stands for. For example, Bob has realized an integrated system for measuring the size of polymeric nanoparticles (based on hydrodynamic chromatography in an aqueous environment) and the molecular weight of the constituting macromolecules (based on size-exclusion chromatography in THF), accomplishing four on-line solvent switches in the fully automated process.

Fourth award

Bob has also adopted or initiated several other projects, including computer-aided method development for one- and two-dimensional liquid chromatography (now known as the PIOTR program), the analysis of dyes in cultural-heritage objects (with Maarten van Bommel) and the study of retention mechanisms, with focus on hydrophilic-interaction liquid chromatography (HILIC).

After the Shimadzu Young-Scientist award in Beijing in 2015, the SCM Young-Scientist Award Lecture in 2017 and, most prestigiously, the Csaba Horváth Young-Scientist Award earned in Prague also in 2017, this is Bob’s fourth international award.

Bob Pirok (third from left) showing his award at the 42nd International Symposium on Capillary Chromatography, held in Riva del Garda (Italy) from 18-23 May. Bob is accompanied by five of his UvA colleagues. From left to right: Alan Garcia Cicourel, Liana Roca, Gino Groeneveld, Pascal Breuer and Marta Passamonti. Photo by Jan Blomberg.