Saturday, December 17, 2016

'Safety Matters': A successful launch on Cape Cod to the 7th grade at Monomoy Regional Middle School

'Safety Matters' has officially been launched on Cape Cod. I gave three back-to- back presentations to over 100 7th graders who attend the Monomoy Regional Middle School in Chatham, MA (Cape Cod) on Friday December 16, 2016. The 7th grade students had an abbreviated schedule: 30 minute blocks of curriculum today instead of the usual 50 minute blocks to accommodate an enrichment at the end of the day facilitated by the Museum of Science. I presented the 'Safety Matters' training module to each of the three groups during their science block in the auditorium. 

What exactly is 'Safety Matters'? Safety Matters is an educational module developed jointly by the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) designed to be facilitated by AIHA member volunteers, like myself, grassroots-style, in their own communities to students in grades 7-12. The intention of this program is to provide general awareness of potential safety hazards on the job and teach young workers how to identify these hazards and ultimately to prevent job-related injuries by knowing their rights to a safe and healthy workplace. Ideally, once a set of students are trained, the teacher can add the training materials into their curriculum for the following year.

Why launch at Monomoy? Why not Barnstable (where I live) or Sandwich (where I work) both of which are where I usually do my science education outreach programs like the Cape Cod Science Cafe, Wicked Cool Autumn Welcome or STEM Journey? In my experience, part of being successful with this type of program launch is launching where people WANT the programming. I announced on Facebook last August that I was pitching the pilot program 'Safety Matters on Cape Cod' to the American Chemical Society Division of Chemical Health and Safety Executive Committee seeking their endorsement since this type of education program is in their wheelhouse. Here's the link to Monomoy: Nancy Gifford, my friend and fellow organizing partner on the aforementioned science outreach events, commented on my Facebook post that she "can't wait for [me] to come to Monomoy". So that's how Monomoy claimed the premiere of 'Safety Matters'. The Cape Cod Chronicle was kind enough to send reporter Alan Pollock to cover the story. Read it here.

NIOSH and AIHA did a spectacular job preparing the Safety Matters materials for volunteers to use. Notably, in each of the three groups I had students share about someone that they knew who had been injured on the job. These were common injuries that included slips, trips, falls, and one student mentioned that his father hurt his back while taking a lobster trap out of the ocean. Having these discussions throughout the presentation really engaged the students, the embedded videos in the presentation (particularly 'Mallory's Story) evoke emotion, although there is a tendency for the students to 'blame the worker' in these scenarios and I kept stressing that the worker has a right to a safe workplace. I passed my laser pointer around to the students during the segments where there are illustrated drawings of some 'very unsafe' workplaces. This was a huge hit and really made the students part of the presentation.

My goal for 2017 is to bring 'Safety Matters' to all of the Cape and Islands school districts. Call it a bit of the 'go big or go home' sentiment but having the ability to achieve something so impactful across the region like helping shape the safety culture for young workers is pretty amazing. And I'm lucky to have the support of my company, PID Analyzers, LLC (allowing me the time this project will take) and the publicity my professional societies  AIHA and ACS will give me,  so I can share my 'Safety Matters on Cape Cod' story.

 I'm scheduled to go back to Monomoy in January to present to those that missed the presentation today. 

Read my first blog post about 'Safety Matters': .

Contact me if you are interested in conducting Safety Matters in your community.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

New! Hand-held portable GC for specific benzene measurements and more!

We introduced our newest portable analyzer, the GC 121, at the New England Local Section of the American Industrial Hygiene Association all-day technical conference in Sturbridge, MA on Tuesday October 18, 2016. 

The following week we were a proud Silver Sponsor of the American Industrial Hygiene Association Fall Conference in San Antonio, TX October 23 and 24, 2016. Learn more about us and our products here

Featured portable analyzer specifications:

10.5” x3” x 2.7”
10.5” x3” x 2.7”
10.5” x3” x 4.25”
Analyzer Weight #
Tank Weight
2# belt
2.1 # belt
2 line x 16 character LCD
2 line x 16 character LCD
3.5” TFT color graphics
Data Storage
7,000 points
7,000 points

Eight GB SD
Card for ASCII data & chromatograms
RS232, Bluetooth
RS232, Bluetooth
Gas (hours)
H2 -hydride (15)
N2 (6-8)
 Low ppb-ppm
0.1 to 50,000 ppm
Low ppb to %
Methane response
Total HC less CH4
300 compounds
For application
9.5, 10.6, 11.7 eV
9.5, 10.6, 11.7 eV

Contact JenniferContact JenniferContact Jennifer

Friday, December 9, 2016

'Safety Matters' on Cape Cod

On Friday December 16, 2016, I'll be rolling out the education module 'Safety Matters' to the 7th grade at the Monomoy Regional Middle School in Chatham, Cape Cod. 

This general awareness training program developed jointly by the National Institute of Occupational Heath and Safety (NIOSH) and the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) is designed to teach young workers how to identify workplace hazards and know their rights as workers.

Why is this important? Here are some statistics you may not know: 
  • "Approximately 1.6 million U.S. teens (aged 15–17) work.
  • Every nine minutes, a U.S. teen is injured on the job.
  • On average, each year:
As you may know, if you follow any of my social media, I'm an avid volunteer for the American Chemical Society (ACS) and serve in various public relations leadership roles. Notably, American Chemical Society CEO, Tom Connelly described an interest in partnering with other professional societies on chemical and lab safety issues in his June 27, 2016 comment titled ACS's Role in Safety in Chemical and Engineering News. This got me thinking about potential partnerships between the ACS and AIHA. It seemed logical to me to get the ACS involved in this particular education outreach effort because of its central workplace safety message; especially the American Chemical Society Division of Chemical Health & Safety (DCHAS). So I pitched the idea to the DCHAS Executive Committee at the recent Fall National Meeting of the American Chemical Society of having DCHAS 'endorse' my efforts to bring 'Safety Matters' to Cape Cod students, as well as my own local ACS section: Northeastern Local Section and NEAIHA, my AIHA Local section. The overall goal in partnering with so many groups is for me to report back with a 'best practices on how to implement 'Safety Matters' in a way that will inspire and guide members of the various groups/subgroups I have engaged, to encourage their members to bring this program to their own communities. Eventually, once I've completed this pilot program on the Cape & Islands, I'd like to tap into the ACS Local Section networks, there are 187 of them, who have outreach activities in place for National Chemical Week in the Fall and Chemists Celebrate Earth Day in the Spring and have their interested members use their community connections to bring 'Safety Matters' to those grade 7-12 educators. Ultimately, once the teachers are introduced to 'Safety Matters' by a volunteer, they can access more in-depth workplace safety programs for young workers that can be added to their curriculum. 

I am grateful to have the support of the ACS Office of Public Affairs, Tom Connelly, DCHAS and NESACS as well as the AIHA Board of Directors, AIHA CEO Larry Sloan and the NEAIHA Executive Committee as I launch 'Safety Matters' Cape-wide.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Science Communication Panel at #f16mrs

Science Communication Panel at #f16mrs

How to Use Social Media for Connecting with Colleagues and the Press

Sunday, November 27
1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Sheraton, 5th Floor, The Fens

This panel will discuss how materials researchers can leverage social 

media as a networking tool as well as a way to promote their work 

through the press and to the public. 

Each panelist will present for twenty minutes and a one hour facilitated 

discussion will follow.


Christopher IncarvitoChristopher D. Incarvito
Yale University

Christopher D. Incarvito has served as Director of Research Operations and Technology at Yale University's West Campus since 2011. In this role he leads development of research, faculty recruitment, campus expansion, sustainability, and has oversight for communications. He is responsible for the quality and creation of new research programming and facilities through collaborative work with faculty, directors, deans, department chairs and other university leadership. He spearheads an ambitious program of laboratory modernization across West Campus, delivering a significant expansion of Yale’s science and engineering capacity. He manages strategic capital investments, deployment of high-value shared research instrumentation laboratories, and has built successful collaborations with global scientific research organizations. Incarvito earned a PhD degree in Inorganic Chemistry from the University of Delaware in 2002. His research interests include the application of orthogonal analytical instrumentation to complex chemical and biological problems with a focus on x-ray based techniques. He is an expert in the field of x-ray crystallography and has been recognized with co-authorship of  more than 150 peer-reviewed publications. He serves on a number of university-wide committees and is a member of the university’s Staff Leadership Council.


Matt Grandbois

Matt Grandbois
Dow Chemical Company

Matt Grandbois is a Corporate Account Marketing Manager for the Dow Chemical Company where he focuses on developing new technologies and solutions across Dow’s chemical portfolio to address the needs of their complex customer accounts within the electronics industry. Grandbois is a member of the American Chemical Society (ACS) Younger Chemist Committee and is the current Chair, and Chair-Elect, of the ACS Division of Professional Relations Younger Chemist Subdivision. In these roles, he develops programming at national ACS meetings aimed at developing professional skills for young scientists. He has been developing trainings and programs to further improve the communication skills of scientists while he was part of the University of Minnesota Chemistry Department Graduate Student Workshop Committee that further spread to his leadership within Dow’s internal early career scientist development committee. He has a BA (2004) in chemistry (ACS) and music performance from Augustana College (Sioux Falls, South Dakota) and a PhD (2010) in chemistry from the University of Minnesota. He was a 2008 Fulbright Scholar to Norway where he studied the relationship between technology and society at the Norwegian Institute of Science and Technology.

Ken HaenenKen Haenen
Hasselt University & IMEC vzw

Ken Haenen is Professor and Chair of the Department of Physics, and Director of the Doctoral School of Sciences and Technology at Hasselt University, Belgium, where he obtained his PhD degree in physics in 2002. He is also a guest professor at IMEC, Belgium. His research interests focus on CVD diamond, including its deposition, optoelectronic characterization, surface functionalization, and diamond-based devices, as part of a broader scope on carbon materials for energy harvesting and conversion. He is a 2017 Volume Organizer for MRS Bulletin and Editor-in-Chief of Diamond and Related Materials. He is involved in the organization of several leading international diamond and nanocarbon conferences, including the International Conference on Diamond and Carbon Materials (Chair), Hasselt Diamond Workshop (Co-Chair), and New Diamond and Nano Carbons (Executive Committee); he organized MRS symposia on carbon functional interfaces at the 2011 and 2013 MRS Spring Meetings; and he served as a co-chair of the 2015 MRS Spring Meeting.

Jennifer MaclachlanJennifer L. Maclachlan
PID Analyzers, LLC

As a co-owner and sales manager of PID Analyzers, LLC, Jennifer L. Maclachlan is responsible for managing relationships with distributors and key clients as well as the web-based marketing, social, and digital media initiatives, of which she was an early adopter. Maclachlan is the Chair of the American Chemical Society (ACS) National Committee on Public Relations and Communications (CPRC) and serves in various Public Relations Communications roles for the ACS as well as providing Public Relations training to ACS groups in-person and via Webinar. She is a founder of the Cape Cod Science Café, which she started in 2011, with support from the Northeastern Section of the ACS (NESACS) and an International Year of Chemistry (IYC2011) mini-grant. This program has continued to gain popularity and the 19th Cape Cod Science Café will take place on March 25, 2017, within  a large public outreach event, STEM Journey, of which she is a founding member and organizer. STEM Journey is an award-winning K–12 annual public outreach, day-long event with collaborative efforts from the ACS Local Section (NESACS), the Cape & Islands Boy Scouts, Sandwich STEM Academy, and PID Analyzers, LLC.

Judy MeiksinJudy Meiksin
Materials Research Society

Judy Meiksin is News Editor for the Materials Research Society, where she is responsible for generating content for news and features for MRS Bulletin, the Materials360® Newsletter, and Meeting Scene®. She has taught writing for over 20 years, including courses at the University of Pittsburgh and the School of the Carnegie as well as invited workshops, most recently at the College of William and Mary and at the Center for Study of Science, Technology & Policy (Bangalore). She has her B.A. degree (1983) from Carnegie Mellon University and MFA degree (1989) from the University of Pittsburgh, both in Writing.

Judy MeiksinRóisín Owens
École des Mines de St. Étienne

Róisín Owens is an Associate Professor in the Department of Bioelectronics (BEL) at the Centre Microélectronique de Provence of the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Mines de Saint Etienne. She received her BA in Biochemistry at Trinity College Dublin, in Ireland, and her PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Southampton University in the UK. She held a postdoctoral fellowship at Cornell University, studying lipid metabolism of Mycobacterium tuberculosis. This was followed by a 1.5 year appointment at Agave BioSystems in Ithaca, New York, where she was involved in developing immunological and biochemical methods for the detection of cancers and pathogenic organisms. She returned, then, to Cornell to engineer proteins for rhinovirus therapeutics, as well as develop nanoparticles for in vivo targeting. Owens has a wide range of expertise in the areas of protein and lipid biochemistry, microbiology, molecular biology, and immunology. She has received several awards including the European Research Council starting grant, a Marie Curie reintegration fellowship, and an EMBO fellowship. She is principal editor for biomaterials for MRS Communications and a news advisor for MRS Bulletin.

Karen WeintraubKaren Weintraub
Freelance Health/Science Journalist

Karen Weintraub is a freelance health/science journalist who regularly contributes to Scientific AmericanUSA TodayThe New York Times, and STAT news, among others. She teaches journalism as an adjunct at Boston University and the Harvard Extension School, and has written two books and three e-books with Harvard doctors.

Friday, October 28, 2016

New! Hand-held PID-based GC

Our new Model PID GC 121 was introduced this month at the New England local section American Industrial Hygiene Association (NEAIHA) all-day conference and at the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) Fall Conference. 

This photoionization detector (PID) based hand-held analyzer uses a gas chromatograph (GC) to separate a variety of toxic chemicals present in the workplace at chemical manufacturing facilities, refineries, plants, emergency response situations, laboratories and all other operations that require monitoring of processes for industrial hygiene worker health and environmental safety applications.

The PID GC 121 is a highly customized analyzer. There are over 250 chemical compounds that can be detected using a PID. When coupled with a GC, this PID can deliver specific direct reading results for similar chemical compounds within the same detection range. This would eliminate the need for the common costly gas detection consumable items like detector tubes. Instead of scrubbing out other chemical compounds present in the sample, the Model 121 actually measures all of the media present and provides specific detection and identification of each chemical present in the sample. 

The Model 121 is designed for rugged field use and is simple to use and maintain with minimal training required. Real-time data is stored and collected on the unit and can be sent to an external monitoring system/PC/tablet via Bluetooth. 

Discussion about particular applications and desired species to be monitored needs to occur with one of our specialists to determine the lamp and GC capillary/packed column match. For example: the unit can be optimized for a ppb Benzene specific analysis or modified for BTEX measurements. Other typical applications include: vinyl chloride, ethylene dichloride, ethylene oxide, hydrazine, acrylonitrile, arsine, phosphine, hydrogen sulfide and so many more! 

Inquire today about how you can add the Model 121 to your gas detection tool-kit. Contact Jack Driscoll or Jennifer Maclachlan for more information at or via phone at 774-413-5281 X0. 

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Join us in San Antonio for the AIHA Fall Conference on Leadership & Management

In about a week we’ll be headed to San Antonio and we hope you'll join us! If you can't travel to the meeting but still want to participate, check out how to register for the virtual conference here.

We’re proud to participate as a Silver Conference Partner for the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) AIHA’s Fall Conference on Leadership and Management.

With dynamic education sessions organized by tracks, an excellent line-up of speakers and coordinated events to facilitate networking, AIHA’s Fall Conference is the best setting for IH/OEHS professionals to collaborate and learn.

AIHA Fall Conference 2015, Orlando, FL
Make sure you visit us at the center of it all, the Hub! We’ll be there to showcase the new additions to our HNU portable gas detection product line which includes the Model 121 hand-held gas chromatograph, the Model 115 and the latest HNU PID's (with sensors, ppb readings etc). Plus, you can enjoy some refreshments, swap ideas with your colleagues, and boost your creativity with interactive games. 

The Hub is also where you can mix and mingle with us and your new friends at the Networking Welcome Reception on Monday evening. 

Check out the full schedule of events located at the Hub

We look forward to connecting with the best and brightest of IH/OEHS profession in San Antonio; we hope you’ll be one of them!

-Jennifer Maclachlan, HNU-PID Analyzers, LLC, @pidgirl

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Cape Cod Forensic Science Cafe at Cape Cod Celebrates National Chemistry Week 2016

Join us for our fourth annual Cape Cod Celebrates National Chemistry Week at the Cape & Islands Boy Scouts Camp Greenough’s Wicked Cool Autumn Welcome featuring the Cape Cod Forensic Science Cafe: A hands-on experience led by local area businesses, educators and members of the Northeastern Local Section of the American Chemical Society. This event is open to the public. Barnstable County Sheriff’s office will show fingerprinting techniques used by the county to solve crimes, Cambridge Science Festival’s Science on the Street and Palladium Science Academy of NY will utilize the forensic theme in their hands-on activities. Stay tuned to the Cape Cod Science Cafe blog for more featured activities. Participants who complete all science cafe activities will earn a Wicked Cool Science Cafe badge for their efforts. Contact me if you would like to volunteer at this event or learn about volunteer opportunities at other public outreach education events in the Boston area. 


Wielding social media for effective science communication