SALT LAKE CITY, Feb. 19, 2009 — The scientific field that focuses on the ultra-small — nanotechnology — will play the biggest single role in the 237th National Meeting & Exhibition of the American Chemical Society (ACS), which takes place here from March 22-26. ACS, the world’s largest scientific society, has scheduled more than 135 major symposia on aspects of nanotechnology. The topics, which will be discussed in nearly 1,000 research papers, range from “green” manufacturing processes to the medical, commercial, and industrial applications of nanotech that are predicted to spawn new multi-billion-dollar industries.
The nanotech sessions are part of a larger program, expected to bring more than 11,000 scientists and others to the capital city of Utah. The scientific sessions include 7,200 presentations on new discoveries that span science’s horizons, from astronomy to zoology. The topics include food and nutrition, medicine, health, energy, the environment, and other fields where chemistry plays a central role. Sessions will be held in the Salt Palace Convention Center and downtown hotels. In addition, the meeting — among the largest scientific gatherings of 2009 — will feature a sprawling exhibit area, with more than 200 exhibits of scientific instrumentation, journals, and other items.
In keeping with the meeting theme, “Nanoscience: Challenges for the Future,” several special Presidential Events will be held, organized by ACS President Thomas H. Lane, Ph.D. Among them are a keynote address, “From Nature and Back Again: Giving New Life to Materials for Energy,” March 22, by noted Massachusetts Institute of Technology scientist Angela Belcher, Ph.D.; “The Kavli Foundation ACS Presidential Plenary Session on Challenges in Nanoscience,” on March 23; and “Naturally Nano,” a symposium on March 24.
The ACS Press Center for the meeting will be located in Hall A of the Salt Palace Convention Center. It will include press briefings and a news media workroom with staff to assist in arranging interviews, wireless Internet access, telephones, computers, photocopy and fax services, and refreshments.
For reporters planning to cover the meeting from their home bases, the ACS Office of Public Affairs (OPA) will hold daily press briefings with audio and video available over the Internet. Embargoed copies of press releases and a press briefing schedule will be available at the ACS Press Room on Eurekalert, http://www.eurekalert.org/acsmeet.php, in March. Reporters also will have access to abstracts of research papers and hundreds non-technical summaries of research presentations written by the scientists. In the press briefing room — organized in ACS’ popular “LiveChat” format, scientists and news media will gather onsite in a setting much like a traditional press conference. However, audio and video from proceedings will be available over the Internet. Reporters working from home bases will have the ability to question scientists at each chat session. Details on obtaining access to the chat room will be available in March.
For reporters planning to cover the meeting from their home bases, the OPA will provide an expanded suite of resources, including press releases, non-technical summaries of research presentations, and staff to arrange interviews.
— Michael Bernstein