An Experimental Online Forum.

The 2020 CE-Forum was initially planned to occur at Division 1.1 – Inorganic Trace Analysis of the Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM, Berlin). Due to the current CORONA circumstances, the Forum was organized as an online meeting. The Forum was hosted by Dr. Björn Meermann and Sebastian Faßbender of the institute, with support from Dr. Gerard Rozing (ROZING.COM Consulting, Karlsruhe) under the auspices of the workgroup Separation Science of the section Analytical Chemistry of the German Chemical Society (GDCh).

Concerning the number of registered participants, the attendance was comparable with the recent years. Between 31 and 34 participants were online during the whole meeting, while leaving and rejoining later. Due to the digital nature of the 2020 online CE-Forum, the audience was more widespread than usual. Next to participants of German groups from Aalen, Braunschweig, Jena, Karlsruhe, München, Münster, Regensburg and Tübingen, and international participants Prague, Barcelona, Switzerland, Egypt, and Sydney were present.

Six Ph.D. students contributed to the program with an oral presentation featuring CE in environmental science and life science research and new-CE technology. The program was complemented with a keynote lecture by Dr. Fernando Benavente from the University of Barcelona. Dr. Benavente, who is a CE expert, introduced in-line or online coupling of SPE with CE. This approach offers a preconcentration factor of up to 100 and will help overcome the limitation of CE sensitivity with spectrophotometric detection. However, method optimization, especially for CE-MS and remains challenging. In the future, it is aspired to additionally implement electro-migrative preconcentration methods further to increase the sensitivity of CE(-MS).

The program of the CE-Forum and more information can be found on this website.

In the end, all participants were encouraged to vote for the best student presentation, which was awarded a book voucher from Springer sponsored by the journal Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry. Alexander Stolz won the prize with a total of 10 votes. His presentation was about glycated and carbamylated hemoglobin species' characterization by CE-MS/MS using successive multiple ionic-polymer layers coated capillaries. Congratulations!

Concluding the Forum, the feedback round showed that the event was well planned, the schedule kept accurately, and run flawlessly online. Despite the unusual situation, all participants appreciated that the CE-Forum could take place and pleased that the yearly sequence of the CE-Forums pursued.