Invited speakers

1st Conference and Spring School

on Properties, Design and Applications of Upconverting Nanomaterials

23rd-27th May 2016, Wroclaw, Poland

Guanying Chen

Conference talk:


Spring school lecture:

Energy-Cascaded Upconversion in Layered Onion-Like Fluoride Nanocrystals


Photon Upconversion Nanomaterials: Technologies and Biomedical Applications

Dr. Guanying Chen received his B.S. and Ph.D. degrees in applied physics in 2004 and in optics in 2009, respectively, from Harbin Institute of Technology (HIT), China. After obtaining his PhD, he became an assistant professor in HIT in 2009, and was promoted to an associate and full professor in 2013 and 2014, respectively. During the period of 2009-2011, he did his postdoc jointly at SUNY Buffalo and KTH. Since 2012, he has been an adjunct research associate professor at the Institute for Lasers, Photonics and Biophotonics (ILPB), SUNY Buffalo. He received the Top-Notch Young Investigator Award of Department of the Central Committee of China in 2015, Top 100 National Excellent PhD Dissertation Nomination Award of China in 2011, the Joseph Wang Award, Cognizure in 2015, the Distinguished Young Investigator Career Award of HIT in 2015. He serves as the Associate Editor, Guest Editor, and Editor Board member, for five peer-reviewed international journals. His main interest lies in the development of upconversion nanoparticles for a broad spectrum of biophotonic and photonic applications. Particularly, he proposed and validated a new landmarked concept of energy cascaded upconversion, which enables to break the long-standing obstacle of narrow and low absorption of upconversion nanoparticles, creating superbright upconverted luminescence for various photonic applications.

Markus Haase

Conference talk:


Spring school lecture:

Synthesis and properties of NaREF4 core/shell nanocrystals


Growth mechanisms of NaREF4 nanocrystals

1989 – 1990 Postdoctoral research assistant at the UC Berkeley, USA (in the research group of Prof. A. P. Alivisatos)

1991 – 1996 Research scientist at the Philips-Research-Laboratory Aachen

1996 – 2003 Habilitation at the Institute of Physical Chemistry at the University of Hamburg (Prof. Weller)

2003 Professor (C3) in physical chemistry at the Technical University of Darmstadt

2004 Full Professor (W3) in inorganic chemistry/ materials chemistry at the University of Osnabrück



2002 Nernst-Haber-Bodenstein Prize 2002 (awarded by Deutsche

Invited Speakers

Tero Soukka

Conference talk:


Spring school lecture:

Upconversion luminescence in ultrasensitive solid-phase immunoassay


Upconverting nanophosphors as reporters in multiplexed immunoassay

Tero Soukka received M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in biotechnology and in vitro diagnostics from University of Turku, Turku, Finland, in 1999 and 2003, respectively. Since 2004 he has studied bioaffinity assay technologies and focused the research on applications of lanthanide luminescence (including photon upconversion) in bioaffinity assays and advanced homogeneous assay concepts. He has been a professor in biotechnology at University of Turku since 2009. He has supervised 15 doctoral theses and is an author or co-author in more than 100 peer-reviewed publications.

Emory Chan

Conference talk:


Spring school lecture:

High-throughput design of upconverting nanoparticles for near-infrared imaging in highly scattering media

Combinatorial and computational strategies for the high-throughput design of upconverting nanoparticles

Dr. Emory Chan is a Staff Scientist at the Molecular Foundry, a U. S. Department of Energy nanoscience user facility at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Dr. Chan’s research interests include the combinatorial and high-throughput synthesis of semiconductor and upconverting nanoparticles. He received a B.S. in Chemistry from Stanford University. Dr. Chan performed his doctoral research on with Prof. Paul Alivisatos and Prof. Richard Mathies in the Chemistry department at the University of California at Berkeley.

Daniel Jaque

Conference talk:


Spring school lecture:

Optical trapping for single up-converting particle spectroscopy: Fundamentals and bio-applications

to be updated

Daniel Jaque (Madrid, 1973) obtained his Certificated in Physics by Sussex University in 1995 and he finished his PhD by the Universidad Autonoma de Madrid in 1999. He has been Assistant Professor at Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Ramon y Cajal Researcher and Associate Professor in Universidad Autónoma de Madrid since 2006. He is co-director of the Fluorescence Imaging Group at Universidad Autónoma de Madrid and present research interest is focused on the use of nanomaterials for high resolution multi-functional bio-imaging and bio-sensing.

Claude Piguet

Conference talk:


Spring school lecture:

Sophistication in Lanthanide Coordination Chemistry: a Prerequisite for Implementing Upconversion at the Molecular Level

Upconversion using linear optics in molecular lanthanide complexes: from dream to reality

Claude Piguet earned a PhD degree in 1989 in the field of biomimetic copper-dioxygen complexes. After postdoctoral periods in the groups of professors J.-M. Lehn (supramolecular chemistry), A. F. Williams (coordination chemistry), and J.-C. G. Bünzli (photophysics), he initiated research projects in the field of lanthanide supramolecular chemistry. He received the Werner Medal of the Swiss Chemical Society (1995) and the Lecoq de Boisbaudran Senior Award from the European Rare Earth Society (2009). He was appointed as a full professor of inorganic chemistry at the University of Geneva (1999) and as an invited professor at the Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris since 2009. He has co-authored more than 185 scientific articles, reviews and book chapters (h-factor = 54, citations per article = 62.05) addressing various aspects of basic chemistry and physics. His current scientific interests are focused on thermodynamics of phase transitions in liquid crystals, lanthanide-centered molecular upconversion, allosteric and chelate cooperativity in multicomponent assembly processes, luminescent polymers and counter-intuitive selective lanthanide extraction processes.

Hans J. Tanke

Conference talk:


Spring school lecture:

Monitoring of immune therapy using UCNP based lateral flow assays


Upconverting phosphors as labels for low cost lateral flow assays to monitor infectious diseases

Hans J. Tanke is a head of Department of Molecular Cell Biology Leiden University Medical Center, Einthovenweg, The Netherlands. His present research field relates to the development of novel fluorescence based technology including advanced imaging to study the molecular composition of cells and chromosome. A special research focus is the analysis of molecular interactions in living cells using CSLM, FRAP and FRET-FLIM techniques. Aim is to unravel the molecular mechanisms that determine normal and abnormal cell function, aiming to understand the cause of inherited and acquired disease. He pioneered the development of novel fluorescent reporters and promoted the use of digital fluorescence microscopy for this purpose, one of the first Dutch programs awarded with a NWO Pioneer grant in 1989. In past decades the Leiden laboratory has made many original contributions to the field of FISH and immunocytochemistry and advanced microscopy (EM and LM). Since three years his team develops technology for point-of-care diagnosis of infectious diseases.

The Department of Molecular Cell Biology that he chairs since 1997 has four main research programs: “Signal transduction in aging related diseases (cancer, diabetes, osteoporosis)”, “Gene regulation and cell differentiation (including gene therapy and stem cell research)”, “Neurosciences in Drosophila and rodents: from genes to neuronal networks” and “Microscopic imaging and technology” (see also

He has pioneered the use of nanophospors as labels of biomolecules (original patent in 1986), and is since that time developing point-of-care tests for infectious diseases and other medical applications using this technology.

Steve Smith

Conference talk:


Spring school lecture:

Spectroscopic Imaging of Surface Plasmon Polariton Enhanced Energy Transfer Upconversion in NaYF4:Yb3+,Ln3+ Nanoparticles

Controlling Energy Transfer Upconversion by Engineering the Photonic Density of States

Steve Smith received the PhD in Applied Physics from the University of Michigan in 1996. He was a postdoctoral fellow from 1996-1999, Research Scientist II from 1999-2002, and Senior Scientist I from 2002-2005 at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, in Golden, Colorado USA, a national laboratory of the U.S. Department of Energy. He was Associate Professor from 2005-2010, Professor from 2011-present, and Program Director of the Nanoscience and Nanoengineering PhD program at the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology in Rapid City, South Dakota, USA from 2005-present. He is author of more than 70 peer-reviewed works and has been principal investigator on more than $7M in research grants, with a focus on nano-materials, nano-photonics and nano-bio imaging. He serves on or has served/chaired numerous National and International program committees and review panels related to Nanoscience, Nanoengineering and Nanomaterials. His research interests focus on photonics, imaging and optical phenomena in nano-materials and super-resolution imaging in nano-bio materials.

Stefan Andersson Engels

Conference talk:



My research interests are within biomedical and pharmaceutical laser spectroscopy applications. Besides optical spectroscopy, both these applications require an understanding of light propagation in turbid media. This has thus been one of the major focus of my research. Another important direction has been towards multidisciplinary research, requiring expertises from many collaborators. These projects has the interesting potential of being application driven, providing possibilities to make a difference in a relatively short time frame.