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Society for Applied Spectroscopy Honorary Membership Award


Recognizing those individuals who have made exceptional contributions to spectroscopy.


Distinguished Professor of Chemistry at the University of Pittsburgh received his B.A. in chemistry at the University of Missouri, St. Louis in 1971 and completed his Ph.D. in chemistry at the University of California, Berkeley in 1977. Dr. Asher was a Research Fellow in Applied Physics at Harvard University between 1977 and 1980, and in 1980 he became Assistant Professor of Chemistry at the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Asher’s research program at Pitt involves development of new materials and the development of new spectroscopic techniques. His group developed UV resonance Raman spectroscopy as a new technique for fundamental and applied structural and trace studies of molecules in complex matrices. His group is using UV resonance Raman to examine the first stages in protein folding. In addition, they are investigating 3 the use of UV resonance Raman for the detection of explosive molecules, especially for stand-off detection. They are working with others in developing a deep UV Raman instrument for NASA’s 2020 Mars lander. In addition, Dr. Asher’s research group develops new photonic crystal optical devices and chemical sensing devices from self-assembling colloidal particles. He pioneered the development of smart hydrogel materials for chemical sensing. Dr. Asher received numerous awards. He is the recipient of the 2016 SAS Honorary Membership Award, 2016 Society of Analytical Chemists of Pittsburgh (SACP) Award in Analytical Chemistry, 2015 FACCS Charles Mann Award in Applied Raman Spectroscopy, the 2011 Charles E. Kaufman Award and the 2008 Pittsburgh Spectroscopy Award. He became a Fellow of the Society of Applied Spectroscopy in 2007, and received the Sigi Ziering Award from the American Society of Clinical Chemistry in 2005. The University of Missouri awarded him the 2004 St. Louis Distinguished Alumni Award. He won the 2002 ACS Pittsburgh Award, and the 2002 Ellis R. Lippincott Award from the Optical Society of America. He won the Pittsburgh Technology Council EnterPrize Award in 2000, the Coblentz Society’s Bomem-Michelson Award in 1999, and the Society for Applied Spectroscopy’s Lester W. Strock Award in 1998, the University of Pittsburgh’s Chancellor’s Distinguished Research Award in 1996, the American Chemical Society Award in Spectrochemical Analysis in 1994, the American Heart Association Established Investigator Award in 1984 and an NIH Career Development Award in 1984. Professor Asher served as the Co-Director of the Materials Research Center of the University of Pittsburgh. He was the Chairman of the XV International Conference on Raman Spectroscopy held in Pittsburgh in 1996. He is Scientific Founder and Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Board of the startup company Vytrace Corp. (previously Glucose Sensing Technologies, LLC.), and is on the Scientific Advisory Boards of BioTools Inc. and Crystalplex Co. He consults for companies such as PPG Industries, ChemImage Corporation, Glucose Sensing Technologies, LLC, and ThermoFisher Co. He is the author of greater than 295 publications and is the inventor in over 29 patents in the area of photonic crystals.

Last Modified: Sep 1, 2016