[Image above] EMA 2022 attendees gathered for a virtual networking event on Wednesday, Jan. 19. Credit: ACerS

For the second consecutive year, the annual Electronic Materials and Applications Conference (EMA) was held as a virtual meeting due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

EMA is an international meeting focused on electroceramic materials and their applications in numerous and varied components, devices, and systems. Jointly programmed by the ACerS Electronics Division and Basic Science Division, EMA 2022 was scheduled to take place in Orlando, Florida, from Jan. 19–21, 2022. However, the expectation of an in-person meeting was dashed with the surge of the new Omicron variant that swept the United States and countries around the world in December and January.

Omicron proved to be highly transmissible, even among vaccinated and boosted individuals. As a result, the ACerS Executive Committee along with the meeting organizers from the ACerS Electronics and Basic Science Divisions made the decision to pivot EMA 2022 to a fully virtual conference just weeks before the scheduled start date.

The fact that EMA 2022 was pivoted to a fully virtual event did not hamper the exchange of quality technical content. Nearly 300 attendees from 22 countries logged in to view the more than 300 oral and poster presentations. Although virtual networking is challenging, EMA 2022 provided multiple opportunities for attendees to connect with each other through events such as an industrial panel for students and young professionals, Networking with a Pro, Publishing for Impact workshop, the 2nd Annual EMA Pub Quiz, and the student award and networking session to end the meeting.

Congratulations to the ACerS Electronics and Basic Science Divisions leadership in moving to a virtual, live meeting on short notice. Special thanks to EMA 2022 program chairs Jennifer Andrew (EDiv), Edward Gorzkowski (EDiv), Amanda Krause (BSD), and Shen Dillon (BSD). The symposium organizers, session chairs, and presenters also are acknowledged for their flexibility and professionalism.

The EMA 2022 Organizing Committee. Credit: ACerS

“I think it is a testament to the electroceramics community that so many joined us in a successful pivot to a virtual meeting, especially when so many of us were looking forward to meeting in person. We had three days filled with outstanding presentations, including two great plenary speakers, along with outstanding invited and contributed talks and posters. I am so pleased that our community was able to come together in a virtual format for a productive and engaging meeting,” says Jennifer Andrew, Electronics Division co-chair and professor at the University of Florida.

Sarah Tolbert, professor in the chemistry & biochemistry and materials science & engineering departments at the University of California, Los Angeles, kicked off EMA 2022 with her plenary talk on “Solution processed nanoporous and nanocrystal based magnetoelectric materials.” Credit: ACerS
EMA 2022 program chair Amanda Krause, left, introduces Thursday’s plenary speaker, Bilge Yildiz. Yildiz is the Breene M. Kerr Professor in the nuclear science & engineering and the materials science & engineering departments at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Her presentation was titledEnergy-efficient hardware and intelligent materials for brain-inspired computing: Artificial synapses based on proton and oxygen motion.” Credit: ACerS

The meeting concluded on the evening of Friday, Jan. 21, with the announcement of the winners of the student poster and oral competitions. The first-place winner for best poster went to Christoph Riedle, TU Wien, Austria, for his presentation titled “Surface decoration of Pr0.1 Ce0.9 O2-δ electrodes with binary oxides measured by in-situ PLD technique.”

Elizabeth Paisley of Sandia National Laboratory announced the winners of the student poster and oral presentation competition on Friday evening. Credit: ACerS

For the oral presentation competition, Bryan Conry of the University of Florida and Luis Ortiz of the University of Connecticut shared in first place honors for their presentations titled “Engineering grain boundary anisotropy to suppress abnormal grain growth in alumina” and “Grain and grain boundary photoconduction in perovskite solar cells with tomographic AFM,” respectively.

The recordings from EMA 2022 will be available through March 31, 2022. We look forward to seeing you in Florida for EMA 2023!