Nanoscale Biophotonics Laboratory (Ireland)

The PAT4Nano activities will be undertaken in the Nanoscale Biophotonics Laboratory (NBL) which is a multi-disciplinary research group based in the School of Chemistry at NUIG. The NBL has two core research activities: process analytical technologies (spectroscopy and chemometrics) and fundamental fluorescence spectroscopy & microscopy (multi-dimensional measurements, single molecule studies, and fluorophore characterization). The NBL also engages heavily with the global pharmaceutical manufacturing community developing new and robust analytical methods for materials characterization. The NBL is a technology driven research group and has one of the best equipped spectroscopy laboratories in Europe which will be available for the project ( The group’s ethos in analytical methodology development is to use multi-modal measurements combined with rigorous multivariate data analysis to deliver accurate and robust techniques suitable for industrial use.

NUIG (via the Nanoscale Biophotonics Laboratory) will be the PAT4Nano coordinator and also heavily involved in the development of innovative measurement methods for particle sizing and chemical characterisation. NUIG is the work package leader for WP4, the multi-PAT activity where we will be looking to combine measurement methods to deliver the optimal industrial end-user solution.


The NUI Galway Quadrangle clock tower in the sunshine.

Established in 1845, the National University of Ireland, Galway (NUIG), is a research-led university ranked among the top 1% of universities in the world (QS World rankings 2020) and is ranked #238. Comprising an international student body of over 3000 students out of 17,000, students are drawn from more than 100 countries worldwide with over 1000 studying at MSc/PhD levels. In 2017, University income exceeded €220 million of which over €58 million was from competitive external research funding. NUIG is involved in over 133 Horizon 2020 funded projects, securing in excess of €65 million in direct funding for the University. NUIG researchers are currently leading large collaborative projects across all the main Horizon 2020 programmes including NMBP, MSCA, Health, ICT and hosts multiple ERC awardees. The University also has dedicated research administrative and technical offices to support its research activities.


Alan G. Ryder


Professor Alan G. Ryder has a B.Sc. in Chemistry (1989) and Ph.D. in Inorganic chemistry (1994) both from the National University of Ireland, Galway (NUIG). After a stint as a postdoctoral researcher in UCC, Cork. He re-joined NUIG as a postdoctoral researcher in the National Centre for Laser Applications (School of Physics) in 1997 to work on developing quantitative Raman spectroscopy-based methods for analysis of illicit narcotics. From 2006 to 2022 he was based in the School of Chemistry at the National University of Ireland, Galway (NUIG).  Since April 2022 he is based in the School of Natural Sciences in the Physics section.

In 2003 he formed the Nanoscale Biophotonics Laboratory (NBL) a research group focussed on the use of photonics and chemometrics technologies for life and physical science applications. In the Analytical Sciences, the primary emphasis is developing rapid, quantitative analytical methods for the analysis of complex materials with particular focus on biopharmaceuticals and he has collaborated with a range of global biopharmaceutical manufacturers on a variety of analytical research projects. In PAT4Nano apart from co-ordinating the project, he will be applying his spectroscopic and data analysis expertise to the development of multi-PAT tools for the multi-attribute analysis of nanosuspensions.

To date he has secured >11M€ of research funding (>3M€ from industrial sources) and graduated 25 PhD/MSc. research students. He has authored >100 publications and generated 3 patents (2 licenced to an NUIG spin out company).

Sarah Henry

Postdoctoral Researcher

Sarah graduated with an M.Sc. in Functionalized Advanced Materials and Engineering (FAME-Erasmus Mundus European Master) from the university of Augsburg (Germany) in 2012 and completed a PhD in Chemistry from the University of Bordeaux (France) in 2015. Her PhD focused on the study of the Aβ protein, involved in Alzheimer’s disease, and its interaction with model membranes using various analytical techniques. Between 2012-17 she was involved in teaching and supervising students over different education levels (high-school, B.Sc., M.Sc.). She joined the Nanoscale Biophotonics Laboratory (NBL) research group on an industrially funded analytics project (2017-19). She worked on developing robust analytical methods for the analysis of various complex materials used in bio-pharmaceutical manufacturing.

In PAT4Nano, she initially assisted with project management during the start up phase and for the second phase is involved in WP2 Raman spectroscopy experimental work.

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