Mary Kate Donais

Contact


+1(603) 641-7218

Email

Education and Honors

9/95 - 12/96 - National Institute of Standards and Technology, NRC Postdoctoral Associate
1996 - Ph.D. University of Massachusetts. Analytical Chemistry
1994 - M.S. University of Massachusetts. Analytical Chemistry
1991 - B.S. Bucknell University. Chemistry

Royal Society of Chemistry Fellow, 2017
Certified Senior Spectroscopist (Society for Applied Spectroscopy), 2016

Society for Applied Spectroscopy Fellow - 2014
Research featured on several journal covers - Applied Spectroscopy, Analytical Methods, Spectroscopy

  • Research

    My research interests are focused on the use of instrumentation for analytical measurements. This broad area of study has provided me with the opportunity to work on a diverse range of samples from beer to turtles. My recent research efforts have involved analytical measurements on archaeological samples such as ancient bronze coins, lead pipes, and mortar. A brief summary of these projects follows.

    Current Projects

    Portable x-ray fluorescence spectrometry and Raman spectroscopy as valuable tools for archaeology (May 2008 to present, Collaboration with Dr. David George of the Saint Anselm College Classics Department). 

    • Elemental and molecular data were collected at an archaeology site in Italy using a portable x-ray spectrometer and a portable Raman spectrometer. Samples analyzed thus far have included wall mortars, floor tiles, hypocaust tiles, hydraulic cements, lead pipes, fibula, pigments on fresco, tesserae, pottery, loom weights, and coins.

    Past Projects

    • Characterization of organic pollutants and metals in a local ecosystems (September 1999-May 2002)
    • Determination of diacetyl in beer samples by isotope dilution gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (September 2001-May 2002, Collaboration with Dr. Daniel Lavoie of the Saint Anselm College Biology Department). 
    • Development of instrumentation for mercury speciation (May 2002-December 2003, Collaboration with Leeman Laboratories Inc, Hudson NH). 
    • Development of an arsenic speciation method using high performance liquid chromatography with inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometric detection (September 2004-May 2005, Collaboration with VHG Laboratories Inc, Manchester NH). 
    • Collection and characterization of volatile biological compounds from wood turtles and salamanders (September 2007 to present, collaborations with Dr. Barry Wicklow and Dr. Lori LaPlante of the Saint Anselm College Biology Department). 
  • Student Involvement

    My research students have the opportunity to present their research at local, national, and international conferences and often are co-authors on research publications. Outside of the Chemistry Department, I am an advisor to the Alpha Zeta Sigma Chapter of Alpha Phi Omega, a national co-ed service organization. My involvement with APO provides myself and my family with the opportunity to give back to the campus and community through various service projects.

  • Teaching
    • CH 110 Principles of Physical Science I - lecture, laboratory
    • CH 111 Principles of Physical Science II - lecture, laboratory
    • CH 130 General Chemistry I - lecture, laboratory
    • CH 131 General Chemistry II - lecture, laboratory
    • CH 220 Forensic Chemistry - lecture
    • CH 260 Environmental Chemistry - lecture, laboratory, service-learning
    • CH 270 Analytical Chemistry I - lecture, laboratory
    • CH 310 Analytical Chemistry II - lecture, laboratory
    • CL 275 Introduction to Archaeology - two laboratory sessions

Scholarship

  • Recent Publications
    • Peter Vandenabeele and Mary Kate Donais. "Mobile Spectroscopic Instrumentation in Archaeometry Research", Applied Spectroscopy, 70(1), 27-41, 2016.  Review paper in a special special topic journal issue devoted to cultural heritage analysis.
    • Mary Kate Donais, Monica Redente, David George. "Field Research and Experiential Learning with Undergraduates: Investigations of Roman Glass Tesserae by Portable X-Ray Fluorescence Spectroscopy", Spectroscopy 29(11), 28-33, 2014.
    • Mary Kate Donais, David George. "Using Portable XRF to Aid in Phasing, Locus Comparisons, and Material Homogeneity Assessment at an Archaeological Excavation," in Handheld XRF inArt and Archaeology. A. Shugar and J. Mass Eds. Belgium, Leuven University Press - Studies in Archaeological Sciences, ISBN 978-90-5867-907-9, 2012.
    • Mary Kate Donais, Bradley Duncan, Sara Wojtas, Antony Desmond, David George, "Differentiation of Hypocaust and Floor Tiles at Coriglia, Castel Viscardo (Umbria, Italy) using Principal Component Analysis and Portable X-Ray Fluorescence Spectrometry," Applied Spectroscopy, 66, 1005-1012, 2012.
    • Mary Kate Donais, David George, Bradley Duncan, Sarah Wojtas, Anna Daigle. "Evaluation of Data Processing and Analysis Approaches for Fresco Pigments by Portable X-Ray Fluorescence Spectrometry and Portable Raman Spectroscopy," Analytical Methods, 3, 1061-1071, 2011.
    • Mary Kate Donais, David George, Sally Roberts, Jack Roberts, Eric Wu, "Chemical Characterization of Pigments at Coriglia, Castel Viscardo using Portable X-Ray Fluorescence Spectrometry and Portable Raman Spectroscopy," Society for Archaeological Sciences Bulletin, 32(2), 2-5, Summer 2010.
    • Mary Kate Donais. "Portable GPS-XRF Protocols for Field Archaeology," Innov X Systems Inc. Academic Grant Series Application Note, http://www.innovx.com/en/pdf/Application+Notes/1289.
    • Mary Kate Donais, Bradley Duncan, David George, Claudio Bizzarri. "Comparisons of Ancient Mortars and Hydraulic Cements through In-Situ Analyses by Portable X-Ray Fluorescence Spectrometry," X-Ray Spectrometry, 39, 146-153, 2010.
    • Mary Kate Donais, David George. "Handheld XRF to Study Ancient Roman Drainage System (1BCE to 1CE) Lead Pipe and Connective Keys Near Orvieto, Italy," Innov X Systems Inc. Academic Grant Series Application Note, www.innovx.com/en/pdf/Application+Notes/1182.
    • Mary Kate Donais, Greg Whissel, Ashley Dumas, Kate Golden. "Analyzing Lead Content in Ancient Bronze Coins by Flame Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy," Journal of Chemical Education, 86, 343-346, 2009.
    • Mary Kate Donais, Holly Jakubowski, Cindy Lebel. "Determination of Tin in Ancient Bronze Coins by Flame Atomic Absorption Spectrometry," Journal of the Analytical Sciences Digital Library Undergraduate Research, www.asdlib.org, February 2008.

    Underlined names indicate students.

    • Mary Kate Donais and David B. George, X-Ray Fluorescence Spectrometry and Its Applications to Archaeology: An Illustrated Guide, New York, Momentum Press, ISBN 978-19-4474-929-3, in press.
    • Mary Kate Donais, Jolien Van Pevenage, Andrew Sparks, Monica Redente, David B. George, Luc Moens, Laszlo Vincze, Peter Vandenabeele.  “Characterization of Roman Glass Tesserae from the Coriglia Excavation Site (Italy) via Energy Dispersive X-Ray Fluorescence Spectrometry and Raman Spectroscopy”, Journal of Applied Physics A, 122(12), 1050, 2016.  Special topical collection devoted to research presented at 2016 inArt Conference.
  • Select Refereed Presentations
    • Pittcon Conference & Expo, New Orleans, Louisiana. "Taking Changes and Trusting Your Instinct", invited speaker in organized session on Women in Spectroscopy, March 9, 2015.
    • Pittcon Conference & Expo, New Orleans, Louisiana. "Raman Spectroscopy and Automated Fluorescence Removal for Pigment Identification in Art Conservation Applications", poster presented by co-author Amy Bauer (TSI), March 9, 2015.
    • SciX presented by the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies, Reno, Nevada. "Characterization of Structure and Art at the Sant'Ansano Excavation Site", co-authors Bradley Duncan '09, Peter Vandenabeele, and David George. October 2, 2014.
    • Internation Symposium on Archaeometry, Los Angeles, California. "Characterization of Structures at the Sant'Ansano Excavation Site (Allerona, Italy) using Portable Spectroscopy", co-authors Bradley Duncan '09, Peter Vandenabeele, and David George. May 22, 2014.
    • SciX presented by the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. "Spectroscopic Examination of First Pyramidal Hypogeum Found in Etruria and Italy", co-author David George, September 30, 2013.
    • SciX presented by the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies, Kansas City, Missouri. "Chemical and Architectural Examination of a Tower in Monterubiaglio, Umbria (Italy)", co-authors Anthony Desmond '12, Mericke Youngs '15, Bradley Duncan '09, and David George, October 1, 2012.
    • Denver X-Ray Conference, Denver, Colorado. "Portable XRF in the Undergraduate Chemistry Curriculum", August 9, 2012.
    • Archaeological Institute of America Annual Meeting, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. "Lessons Learned from Five Years of Use of Portable X-Ray Fluorescence at the Excavations of Coriglia, CV (Umbria, Italy)", co-authors David George (presenter) and Claudio Bizzarri, January 2012.
    • Conference of the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies, Reno, Nevada. Invited talk. "Scatterplots to Data Fusion - a Toolbox of Approaches for Processing and Evaluating Portable XRF and Raman Data for Fresco Pigments", co-authors David George, Bradley Duncan '09, Anna Daigle '10, and Sara Wojtas '11, October 4, 2011.
    • Archaeological Institute of America Annual Meeting, San Antonio, Texas. "The Excavations at Coriglia, Castel Viscardo, Italy: Field Reports for 2009-2010 Seasons", co-authors David George (presenter), Claudio Bizzarri, Linda Rulman, January 2011.
    • Conference of the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies, Raleigh, North Carolina. Symposium organizer.  "Spectroscopic Investigations of Archaeological Samples from Coriglia, Castel Viscardo, Italy", co-authors Anna Daigle '10 and David George, October 19, 2010.
    • Archaeological Institute of America Annual Meeting, Anaheim, California. "Use of Portable XRF and Portable Raman for Phasing of Walls and Floors of Roman Structures at the Excavations at Coriglia, Castel Viscardo, Italy", co-authors David George (presenter) and Claudio Bizzarri, January 8, 2010.
    • Conference of the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies, Louisville, Kentucky. Symposium organizer. "Analysis of Ancient Roman Pigments by Portable X-Ray Fluorescence and Raman Spectroscopies", co-authors David George, Sally Roberts, Jack Roberts, and Eric Wu, October 19, 2009.
    • Archaeological Institute of America Annual Meeting, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. "Use of Portable X-Ray Fluorescence for Mortar, Hydraulic Cement, and Metal Analysis in Situ", co-authors David George, Linda Rulman, and Claudio Bizzarri, January 9, 2009.
    • Conference of the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies. Symposium organizer. Reno, Nevada. "Investigations of Metals in Drainage System Deposit and Lead Pipe at Castel Viscardo", co-authors Cindy Lebel '08, Katherine Thibodeau '09, and Bradley Duncan '09, September 29, 2008.
    • Conference of the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies. Memphis, Tennessee. "Lead and Tin in Roman Bronze Coins by Flame Atomic Absorption Spectrometry", co-authors Ashley Dumas '05, Kate Golden '06, Holly Jakubowski '06, and Cindy Lebel '08, October 17, 2007.
    • Conference of the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies. Orlando, Florida. "An Undergraduate Lab for the Determination of Lead in Ancient Bronze Coins by Atomic Absorption Spectrometry", co-author Ashley Dumas '05, September 25, 2006.
    • Conference of the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies. Portland, Oregon. "Quantitative Spectroscopic Characterization of Ancient Bronze Coins", co-authors Greg Whissel '04 and Ashley Dumas '05, October 6, 2004.
    • Conference of the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies. Providence, Rhode Island. "Service Learning in an Environmental Chemistry Course", October 14, 2002.
    • Conference of the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies. Providence, Rhode Island. "Automated Determination of Mercury Species using Gas Chromatography with Cold Vapor Atomic Fluorescence Detection", co-author Jennifer L. Smith '04, October 15, 2002.
    • Eastern New England Biological Conference, Manchester, New Hampshire. "Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometric Analysis of Organic Pollutants in Orange Pond", co-authors Chris Browning '01 and Robert Allard '01, April 21, 2001.
    • Conference of the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies, Nashville, Tennessee. "Elimination of Polyatomic Interferences in Chromium Speciation with an Inductively Couples Plasma Mass Spectrometer Operated in Collision-Cell Mode", September 27, 2000.
    • Northeast Regional Meeting of the American Chemical Society, Storrs, Connecticut. "Metal Speciation in Environmental Samples using Plasma-Based Spectroscopic Detection", June 20, 2000.
    • The Pittsburgh Conference, Orlando, Florida. "Development and Application of a Chromium Speciation Method Using an Automated Liquid Handling System with ICP-MS Detection", March 11, 1999.
    • International Conference on Flow Injection Analysis, Seattle, Washington. "Chromium Speciation using an Automated Liquid Handling System with Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometric Detection", August 25, 1998.
    • Rocky Mountain Conference on Analytical Chemistry, Denver, Colorado. "Chromium Speciation using an Automated Liquid Handling System with Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometric Detection", July 29, 1998.
    • Conference of the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies, Providence, Rhode Island. "Arsenic Speciation in Environmental Samples using ICP/MS and Ion Pairing Reverse Phase Liquid Chromatography", October 30, 1997.
    • Rocky Mountain Conference on Analytical Chemistry, Denver, Colorado. "Arsenic Speciation in Environmental Samples using a VG PlasmaQuad ICP-MS for Element-Specific Detection of Ion-Pairing LC and Micro-LC Separations", August 4, 1997.
    • Waste Testing & Quality Assurance Symposium, Washington D.C. "The Development of NIST Standard Reference Materials (SRMs) for Methylmercury Content in Complex Matrix Environmental Samples", July 25, 1996.
    • International Symposium and Workshop on Biological Environmental Specimen Banking, Stockholm, Sweden. "Methylmercury in Beluga Whales as Determined by Gas Chromatography with Atomic Emission Detection", May 1996.
    • The Winter Conference on Plasma Spectrochemistry, Fort Lauderdale, Florida. "Methylmercury in Whale Livers, Kidneys, and Blubber as Determined by Gas Chromatography with Atomic Emission Detection", January 9, 1996.
    • The Pittsburgh Conference, New Orleans, Louisiana. "Organomercury Speciation in Marine Materials by Gas Chromatography with Atomic Emission Detection", March 9, 1995.
    • The Winter Conference on Plasma Spectrochemistry, Cambridge, England. "Organomercury Speciation in Marine Material by Gas Chromatography with Atomic Emission Detection", January 9, 1995.
    • The Pittsburgh Conference, Chicago, Illinois. "Organomercury Speciation in Marine Reference Materials by Gas Chromatography with Atomic Emission Detection", March 1, 1994.
  • Other Presentations
    • Academy of Science and Design SPARK.  “Indiana Jones and the Chemist: How Portable Instruments are Used in Field Archaeology”, December 13, 2017.  Included live demonstration of x-ray fluorescence spectrometer.
    • Delaware Valley Section of the Society for Applied Spectroscopy.  SAS National Tour Speaker.  “Applications of Portable Spectroscopy for Field Archaeology – Adventures of an Analytical Chemist in Italy”, October 18, 2016.
    • National Institute of Standards and Technology.  “Using Portable Spectroscopy and Chemometrics to Characterize Archaeological Materials”, May 18, 2016.
    • Baltimore Washington Section of the Society for Applied Spectroscopy.  SAS National Tour Speaker.  “Applications of Portable Spectroscopy for Field Archaeology – Adventures of an Analytical Chemist in Italy”, May 17, 2016.
    • Saint Anselm College Probe and Scalpel Annual Banquet.  Keynote Speaker.  "Archaeometry:  A Collaboration Between Chemistry and Classics", May 3, 2011.
    • Bedford New Hampshire Rotary. Invited talk. "Oh...You Teach Chemistry," April 30, 2007.
    • Saint Anselm College Probe and Scalpel Annual Banquet. Keynote Speaker. "Archaeometry: A Collaboration Between Chemistry and Classics for Metals in Ancient Coins," April 30, 2007.
    • Department of Chemistry Reunion Symposium, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Mass. Invited talk. "Investigations of Lead Content in Ancient Bronze Coins," June 9, 2006.
    • McGill University Chemistry Department, Montreal, Canada. Invited talk. "Total Mercury and Methylmercury in Biological Materials," November 12, 2004.
    • Statewide Service-Learning Conference, Manchester, N.H. "Service Learning in Environmental Chemistry," April 19, 2002.
    • Sigma Xi Postdoctoral Poster Presentation, Gaithersburg, Maryland. "Certification of NIST Environmental Reference Materials for Methylmercury Content: the First Certified Metal Speciation Values Generated at NIST," February 29, 1996.
    • The Hewlett-Packard Company, Little Falls Site, Wilmington, Delaware. "Organomercury Speciation in Marine Materials by Gas Chromatography with Atomic Emission Detection," invited seminar, December 1, 1994.
    • SciX presented by the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies, Reno, Nevada.  “Effects of Sample Preparation on XRF Measurements of Ancient Mortars”, co-authors Mina Alrais ’17, David B. George, and Eric Smith, October 10, 2017.
    • SciX presented by the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies, Reno, Nevada.  “Using pLIBS to Inform Field Archaeology”, co-authors Luke Douglass ’18 and David B. George, October 11, 2017.
    • TechnArt: Non-Destructive and Microanalytical Techniques in Art and Cultural Heritage, Bilbao, Spain.  “Roman glass tesserae: a combined Raman and XRF spectroscopic investigation”, co-authors Jolien Van Pevenage (presenter), David B. George, Luc Moens, Laszlo Vincze, and Peter Vandenabeele, May 3, 2017.
    • inArt International Conference on Innovation in Art Research and Technology, Ghent, Belgium.  “The Saint Anselm College Italy Excavations – Research and Training”, keynote speaker, co-author David George, March 22, 2016.
  • Student Presentations
    • SciX presented by the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies, Reno, Nevada.  “Elemental Analysis of Bucchero Pottery using Laser Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy”, Luke Douglass ’18, October 8 and 10, 2017.
    • SciX presented by the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies, Minneapolis, Minnesota.  “Elemental Characterization of Fresco Pigments and Cistern Walls via X-Ray Fluorescence Spectrometry”, Kaliopi Konomi ’17, September 18 & 19, 2016.
    • SciX presented by the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies, Providence, Rhode Island.  "Elemental Characterization of Ancient Glass Tesserae via X-Ray Fluorescence Spectrometry", Andrew Sparks '16 and Monica Redente '14, September 28, 2015.
    • Society for Applied Spectroscopy - New England Section Annual Student Research Poster Session, Manchester, New Hampshire.  "Determination of Silver in Ancient Roman Bronze Coins by Flame Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy," Kristen Frano '12, April 17, 2012.
    • Society for Applied Spectroscopy - New England Section Annual Student Research Poster Session, Manchester, New Hampshire.  "Portable X-Ray Fluorescence Spectrometry used for In Situ Archaeological Studies and Laboratory Coin Analyses," Anthony Desmond '12, April 17, 2012.
    • The Pittsburgh Conference, Orlando, Florida.  "Chemical Characterization of a Tower in Monterubiaglio, Umbria (Italy) Utilizing Portable X-Ray Fluorescence Spectrometry," Anthony Desmond '12, co-authors Bradley Duncan '09 and David George, March 13, 2012.
    • Conference of the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies, Reno, Nevada.  Invited talk.  "Portable XRF Studies of Hypocaust Tiles," Sara Wojtas '12, co-authors David George, Bradley Duncan '09, and Anthony Desmond '12, October 3, 2011.
    • Society for Applied Spectroscopy - New England Section Annual Student Research Poster Session, Bilerica, Massachusetts.  "Experimental Analysis of Pb Pipes by Portable X-Ray Fluorescence Spectrometry," Danielle Nolan '11, April 28, 2011.
    • International Symposium on Archaeometry, Tampa Florida.  "Investigations of Archaeological Samples from the Castel Viscardo Excavation Site," Anna Daigle '10, May 10-12, 2010.
    • Society for Applied Spectroscopy - New England Section Annual Student Research Poster Session, Bilerica, Massachusetts.  "Investigations of Archaeological Samples from the Castel Viscardo Excavation Site," Anna Daigle '10, April 20, 2010.
    • Northeast Undergraduate Research Development Symposium, University of New England, Biddeford, Maine.  "Characterization of Ancient Pipe Segments and Keys by Portable X-Ray Fluorescence Spectrometry," Bradley Duncan '09, March 28, 2009.
    •  Northeast Undergraduate Research Development Symposium, University of New England, Biddeford, Maine.  "X-Ray Fluorescence Analysis of Roman Archaeological Artifacts," Katherine Thibodeau '09, March 28, 2009.
    • Society for Applied Spectroscopy-New England Section Annual Student Research Poster Session, Natick, Mass. "Metals in Drainage System Deposit and Lead Pipe from an Italian Excavation Site," Cindy Lebel '08, April 22, 2008.
    • Society for Applied Spectroscopy-New England Section Annual Student Research Poster Session, Natick, Mass. "Metals in Ancient Roman Bronze Coins," Abby Pelletier '08, April 22, 2008.
    • Analytical Sciences Digital Library Fall Poster Session. "Investigation to Improve Digestion Method for Bronze Coin Analysis," poster by Kathleen Golden '06, October 2007.
    • Sigma Xi Annual Research Conference, Montreal, Canada. "Quantitative Spectroscopic Characterization of Ancient Roman Bronze Coins," submitted for presentation by Ashley Dumas ‘05, Greg Whissel '04 co-author, November 12-13, 2004. Gold Ribbon awarded.
    • Eastern New England Biological Conference, Manchester, N.H. "Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometric Analysis of Organic Pollutants in Orange Pond," presented by Chris Browning ‘01 and Robert Allard ‘01, April 21, 2001.