ASCOS Series
ASCOS 2019
Optical (Bio)Sensing for Life Science and Environmental Applications
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ASCOS 2019 Logo Welcome to Bertinoro,
home of the 2019 edition of ASCOS, the Advanced Study Course on Optical Chemical Sensors.

Located in Bertinoro, a small village of medieval origin located on the top of a hill from which it is possible to enjoy a magnificent landscape, in July 2019 the Residential Centre of the University of Bologna will host ASCOS 2019, dedicated to "Optical (bio)sensing for life science and environmental applications".

In times of increasing pressure over natural resources, more than ever the ecosystems' health and human wellbeing depend on the use of intelligent monitoring systems.
In this context, real-time detection of chemical and biological parameters is a tool for sustainability.

Offering a variety of very powerful analytical methods, optical technologies have been the subject of extensive research worldwide. Benefiting from a series of technological revolutions ranging from optoelectronics, providing e.g. UV/blue LEDs and specialty optical fibres, to material science and chemistry to create for instance new sensing nanomaterials, this is a growing field of research and technological development. As an exciting but very challenging area, the success of optical chemical and biochemical sensor technology requires a highly multidisciplinary approach.

In this context, the objective of this advanced study course - the 11th in the framework of the ASCOS series - is to provide young scientists from various disciplines a privileged atmosphere where they can learn about both the fundamentals the new challenges in the different areas related to optical chemical and biochemical sensors, have an exhaustive view on their applications and interact with some leading scientists in these fields.

Organized by IFAC - CNR and the University of Bologna's Chemistry Department "Giacomo Ciamicaian", ASCOS 2019 will put a special focus on "Optical (bio)sensing for life science and environmental applications", covering latest developments as well as basic principles of the diverse range of sensor techniques, probes and bioassays that rely on opto-chemical sensing principles. At the same time, emerging applications and commercial aspects of sensor development will be discussed. This year's edition will hence put a special focus on environmental monitoring and biodefense, system integration, commercial sensors, Point-Of-Care Testing and intracellular bio-sensing.

ASCOS events follow a model that strongly stimulates interaction among the students and the expert tutors. Lectures will cover both fundamental theory and basics at a level accessible for every participant and exciting latest development of related technologies. The students will be challenged to apply their knowledge in solving specific real-life problems using optical sensors systems. Aided by the expert tutors, small groups of participants from different countries will work together during the course and will, at the last day of the event, present their solution to an audience representing the international scientific community.

Complementing the scientific programme, there will be ample opportunity for socialising and networking, thus facilitating the other major aim of ASCOS: to form a network of interdisciplinary and international contacts and cooperation. The latter is probably the greatest asset in modern science.

ASCOS courses target top-class young scientists from all fields related to optical chemical sensor development and application, from Master level upwards. You are encouraged to take this unique chance to meet leading people in the field under friendly, relaxed conditions, learn new skills and ideas from renowned tutors and fellow participants, and form contacts that may be explored in the future.

On behalf of the whole organising committee, we look forward to seeing you in Bertinoro.

Ambra Giannetti
Director of the course
Francesco Baldini
ASCOS Series President