Professor Avelino Corma Canos selected for the 2009 Michel Boudart Award

Pro­fes­sor Avelino Corma Canos has been selected for the 2009 Michel Boudart Award for the Advance­ment of Catal­y­sis. The award con­sists of a plaque and a mon­e­tary prize. The Award rec­og­nizes and encour­ages indi­vid­ual con­tri­bu­tions to the elu­ci­da­tion of the mech­a­nism and active sites involved in cat­alytic phe­nom­ena and to the devel­op­ment of new meth­ods or con­cepts that advance the under­stand­ing and/or prac­tice of het­ero­ge­neous catal­y­sis. The Award is spon­sored by the Hal­dor Top­søe Com­pany and is admin­is­tered jointly by the NACS and the EFCATS. More infor­ma­tion on this award and the award process can be found in the Awards folder on the NACS home page www.nacatsoc.org. Pro­fes­sor Corma will also be asked to give ple­nary lec­tures at the San Fran­cisco NAM meet­ing in June 2009 and the EuropaCat 2009 meet­ing in Sala­manca, Spain.

Avelino Corma has been a research pro­fes­sor at the Uni­ver­si­dad Politéc­nica de Valen­cia since 1990 where he founded and is direc­tor of the Insti­tuto de Tec­nolo­gia Química (UPV-CSIC) at Valen­cia. He is a world class leader in struc­tured nano­ma­te­ri­als and mol­e­c­u­lar sieves as cat­a­lysts, cov­er­ing aspects of syn­the­sis, char­ac­ter­i­za­tion, and reac­tiv­ity in acid-base and redox catal­y­sis. He is rec­og­nized widely for his unique abil­ity to com­bine state-of-the-art syn­thetic pro­to­cols with mod­ern the­o­ret­i­cal and char­ac­ter­i­za­tion meth­ods to design cat­alytic mate­ri­als for spe­cific func­tions. Avelino has become one of the most pro­lific and ver­sa­tile con­trib­u­tors to the sci­ence and tech­nol­ogy of het­ero­ge­neous catal­y­sis. He has pub­lished nearly 700 schol­arly man­u­scripts in the lead­ing jour­nals of chem­istry and catal­y­sis, and he has been rec­og­nized among the fifty most highly cited chemists for the last decade. Remark­ably, he has com­bined these schol­arly con­tri­bu­tions with more than 100 patents cov­er­ing inven­tions of far-reaching impact to the indus­trial prac­tice of catal­y­sis, many of them licensed to indus­try and some in com­mer­cial prac­tice. In 2006 alone, he received four pres­ti­gious inter­na­tional awards in recog­ni­tion of his many and broad fun­da­men­tal and prac­ti­cal con­tri­bu­tions to the field. As one nom­i­na­tor described, “Pro­fes­sor Avelino Corma’s … work illus­trates the value of fun­da­men­tal con­cepts in prac­ti­cal dis­cov­er­ies and the need to bring together exper­i­ment and the­ory, char­ac­ter­i­za­tion of struc­ture and func­tion in com­plex inor­ganic solids, and indus­try and acad­e­mia as we seek to advance the sci­ence of catal­y­sis.” Another sup­porter remarked, he is “one of the inter­na­tion­ally pre­em­i­nent schol­ars in the field of catal­y­sis today. His work has had immense impact on the sci­ence of this field and has also led to a num­ber of sig­nif­i­cant tech­ni­cal appli­ca­tions, a very rare accom­plish­ment for any aca­d­e­mic investigator.”

Avelino’s grasp of con­cepts and of fun­da­men­tal needs has been illus­trated in his recent attempts to syn­the­size and use well defined-single-isolated sites to estab­lish structure-function rela­tions and to estab­lish the con­nec­tions among homo­ge­neous, enzy­matic and het­ero­ge­neous catal­y­sis, a con­cep­tual frame­work that put for­ward in a sem­i­nal paper in Catal­y­sis Reviews, 46 (2004) 369 — 417. One of these approaches involves the selec­tive attach­ment of organometal­lic com­plexes onto tai­lored sub­strates that act not only as scaf­folds but also as active par­tic­i­pant in the acti­va­tion of reac­tants and in the sta­bi­liza­tion of tran­si­tion states. These mate­ri­als pro­vide sig­nif­i­cant improve­ments over homo­ge­neous ver­sions of these active com­plexes through the active par­tic­i­pa­tion of the inor­ganic scaf­folds, as shown in some of his recent pub­li­ca­tions, in which these con­cepts have been put into prac­tice (e.g. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 45, 3328 (2006); J. Catal. 224, 170 (2004); Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 46, 1536 (2007); Adv. Synth. Catal. 348, 1283 (2006)).
In another exam­ple of his many con­tri­bu­tions to catal­y­sis, he and his research group have not only addressed the design of new zeo­lites mate­ri­als for con­ven­tional reac­tions of hydro­car­bons, but also dis­cov­ered new chemistries and appli­ca­tions for these mate­ri­als in the syn­the­sis of petro­chem­i­cals, phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals, and fine chem­i­cals. The ITQ-type mate­ri­als have become ubiq­ui­tous in the lit­er­a­ture; they rep­re­sent new cat­a­lyst com­po­si­tions, cur­rently num­ber­ing about 50 and con­sist­ing mostly of micro­p­orous solids, all dis­cov­ered within the Corma research group. His novel cat­a­lysts for paraf­fin iso­mer­iza­tion are widely used in prac­tice because of their unprece­dented sul­fur resis­tance and high sta­bil­ity and selec­tiv­ity. His col­lab­o­ra­tions with indus­try have led to new zeo­lites with sig­nif­i­cant poten­tial in cat­alytic crack­ing because of their sta­bil­ity and desir­able prod­uct dis­tri­b­u­tions. Pro­fes­sor Corma has pub­lished exten­sively about applied aspects of het­ero­ge­neous catal­y­sis related to refin­ing tech­nol­ogy. These pub­li­ca­tions have recently explored the kinet­ics of organosul­fur reac­tions dur­ing crack­ing reac­tions and the details of hydroi­so­mer­iza­tion catal­y­sis on acid and bifunc­tional cat­a­lysts, all of which are of crit­i­cal impor­tance in sus­tain­able devel­op­ment, effi­cient energy use and respon­si­ble man­age­ment of the environment.

His design of well struc­tured oxi­da­tion and hydro­gena­tion cat­a­lysts has lead to new cat­alytic routes for the chemos­e­lec­tive of lac­tones (Nature, 412, 423 (2001); Chemos­e­lec­tive hydro­gena­tion of sub­sti­tuted nitroaro­mat­ics (Sci­ence 313, 332 (2006), Chemos­e­lec­tive syn­the­sis of azo­com­pounds (Sci­ence 322, 1661 (2008). He is now actively patent­ing and pub­lish­ing on well defined mul­ti­site solid cat­a­lysts for cas­cade reactions.

In addi­tion to his many out­stand­ing research accom­plish­ments, Avelino’s con­tin­ued lead­er­ship in the field has been rec­og­nized by numer­ous awards, includ­ing the Fran­cois Gault Award of the Euro­pean Catal­y­sis Soci­ety (2001), the Eugene Houdry Award of the North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety (2002), the Don­ald Breck Award of the Inter­na­tional Zeo­lite Asso­ci­a­tion (2004), and the Gabor A. Somor­jai Award for Cre­ative Research in Catal­y­sis (2008).

Dr. Jeffrey S. Beck is the 2009 Eugene J. Houdry Awardee

Jeffrey Scott Beck

Jef­frey Scott Beck

It is my plea­sure to announce that Dr. Jef­frey S. Beck of Exxon­Mo­bil Research and Engi­neer­ing Com­pany, Clin­ton, NJ (USA) is the 2009 Eugene J. Houdry Awardee. This award is spon­sored by Süd Chemie and admin­is­tered by The North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety. The pur­pose of the Award is to rec­og­nize and encour­age indi­vid­ual con­tri­bu­tions in the field of catal­y­sis with empha­sis on the devel­op­ment of new and improved cat­a­lysts and processes rep­re­sent­ing out­stand­ing advances in their use­ful appli­ca­tion. The Award con­sists of a plaque and an hon­o­rar­ium. Fur­ther details about this Award and its his­tory may be found in the Awards Folder of the NACS web­site, www.nacatsoc.org.

Among his many accom­plish­ments, Jeff was co-inventor of M41S, an entirely new class of meso­porous mol­e­c­u­lar sieves. M41S mate­ri­als rep­re­sent a break­through in ultra large pore mol­e­c­u­lar sieve tech­nol­ogy. Uti­liz­ing strate­gies gleaned from sur­fac­tant chem­istry, Jeff demon­strated how to manip­u­late the syn­the­sis of these mate­ri­als to tai­lor their pore size from 20 to 100 Å. He also demon­strated that the inter­ac­tions between sur­fac­tant tem­plates and reac­tion con­di­tions in these sys­tems could be manip­u­lated to pro­duce either zeolitic or meso­porous mate­ri­als, thus illus­trat­ing the pos­si­bil­ity of either mol­e­c­u­lar or supramol­e­c­u­lar tem­plat­ing. Dis­cov­ery of these mate­ri­als is rec­og­nized as a major inno­va­tion through­out the sci­en­tific com­mu­nity. These sil­i­cates are applic­a­ble to a wide range of appli­ca­tions in catal­y­sis, sep­a­ra­tions and as host/guest mate­ri­als. This work was awarded the 1994 Don­ald W. Breck Award by the Inter­na­tional Zeo­lite Association.

Another major achieve­ment includes Jeff’s sem­i­nal work on prepar­ing ex-situ selec­ti­vated cat­a­lysts which laid the ground­work for the Exxon­Mo­bil PxMaxsm process (selec­tive con­ver­sion of toluene to p-xylene, the pre­cur­sor to terephathalic acid and poly­esters), which was recently rec­og­nized with the ACS Heroes of Chem­istry Award. His research in the “mol­e­c­u­lar engi­neer­ing” of zeo­lites and the inter­play between reac­tion path­ways, kinet­ics, and mass trans­port in micro­p­orous mate­ri­als led to sev­eral com­mer­cial processes for the selec­tive pro­duc­tion of para-xylene. Jeff’s fun­da­men­tal stud­ies enabled him to tai­lor the dif­fu­sion prop­er­ties of the cat­a­lyst by using novel nano-coating tech­niques. He car­ried out detailed kinetic and mech­a­nis­tic stud­ies to design cat­a­lysts for selec­tive pro­duc­tion of para-xylene in Exxon­Mo­bil processes such as PxMaxsm and XyMaxsm (awarded the 2003 Thomas Alva Edi­son Patent Award by the Research and Devel­op­ment Coun­cil of New Jer­sey), and his find­ings also played a key role in the com­mer­cial man­u­fac­ture of these cat­a­lysts. These dis­cov­er­ies have been deployed world­wide in more than 20 com­mer­cial units for para-xylene pro­duc­tion, with oth­ers planned, and have been rec­og­nized not just by their rather sig­nif­i­cant eco­nomic impact, but also for their envi­ron­men­tal ben­e­fits by reduc­ing the energy required to pro­duce para-xylene and their soci­etal ben­e­fit in enabling the lower cost pro­duc­tion of the key com­po­nent used in the pro­duc­tion of poly­eth­yl­enetereph­the­late (PET), one of the world’s most widely used polymers.

In addi­tion, Jeff has authored or coau­thored 47 sci­en­tific pub­li­ca­tions, 58 exter­nal pre­sen­ta­tions, and 59 patents, which demon­strate his cre­ativ­ity in the broad research area of catal­y­sis. One sup­porter com­mented, “He inno­vates, imple­ments, and leads. Jeff’s impact on Exxon­Mo­bil through catal­y­sis has been tremen­dous, far exceed­ing hun­dreds of mil­lions of dollars.”

Jeff has also played a key role in bring­ing to Exxon­Mo­bil new research tools to fur­ther increase capa­bil­i­ties to effi­ciently carry out research and devel­op­ment of novel cat­alytic tech­nolo­gies. He was a key mem­ber of the team that estab­lished a broad ExxonMobil-Symyx alliance in High-Throughput R&D (HT R&D). With Jeff lead­ing the effort, these new HT R&D tools, along with advanced mod­el­ing efforts, are suc­cess­fully being imple­mented at Exxon­Mo­bil and have yielded inno­va­tions that have been com­mer­cial­ized in the refin­ing and lubri­cant areas.

Jeff’s cur­rent role at Exxon­Mo­bil is man­ager of Cor­po­rate Strate­gic Research of Exxon­Mo­bil Research and Engi­neer­ing Com­pany, with over­ar­ch­ing respon­si­bil­ity for upstream, down­stream, and chem­i­cals long range research for the entire Cor­po­ra­tion.
 
John Armor
Pres­i­dent of The North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Society

Nobel Prize in Chemistry for 2007 awarded to Professor Gerhard Ertl for groundbreaking studies in surface chemistry

The Nobel Prize in Chem­istry for 2007 was awarded for ground­break­ing stud­ies in sur­face chem­istry. The Award acknowl­edges the impact of Pro­fes­sor Ertl’s catal­y­sis related work upon the semi­con­duc­tor indus­try. Ger­hard Ertl has founded an exper­i­men­tal school of thought by show­ing how reli­able results can be attained in this dif­fi­cult area of research. His insights have pro­vided the sci­en­tific basis of mod­ern sur­face chem­istry, espe­cially applied to catal­y­sis: his method­ol­ogy is used in both aca­d­e­mic research and the indus­trial devel­op­ment of chem­i­cal processes. The approach devel­oped by Ertl is based not least on his stud­ies of the Haber-Bosch process, in which nitro­gen is extracted from the air for inclu­sion in arti­fi­cial fer­til­iz­ers. This reac­tion, which func­tions using an iron sur­face as its cat­a­lyst, has enor­mous eco­nomic sig­nif­i­cance because the avail­abil­ity of nitro­gen for grow­ing plants is often restricted. Ertl has also stud­ied the oxi­da­tion of car­bon monox­ide on plat­inum, a reac­tion that takes place in the cat­a­lyst of cars to clean exhaust emis­sions.
 
Cred­its to http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/chemistry/laureates/2007/press.html

Tobin Marks Awarded 2005 National Medal of Science by President Bush

Con­grat­u­la­tions to Pro­fes­sor Tobin J. Marks, who on May 29, 2007 was one of only eight sci­en­tists awarded the 2005 National Medal of Sci­ence by Pres­i­dent George W. Bush. The National Medal of Sci­ence was estab­lished by the 86th Con­gress in 1959 as a Pres­i­den­tial Award to be given to indi­vid­u­als “deserv­ing of spe­cial recog­ni­tion by rea­son of their out­stand­ing con­tri­bu­tions to knowl­edge in the phys­i­cal, bio­log­i­cal, math­e­mat­i­cal, or engi­neer­ing sci­ences.” In 1980 Con­gress expanded this recog­ni­tion to include the social and behav­ioral sci­ences. The National Sci­ence Foun­da­tion admin­is­ters the award; for more infor­ma­tion about the National Medal of Sci­ence please visit www.nsf.gov/nsb/awards/nms/medal.htm. A Com­mit­tee of 12 sci­en­tists and engi­neers is appointed by the Pres­i­dent to eval­u­ate the nom­i­nees for the award. Since its estab­lish­ment, the National Medal of Sci­ence has been awarded to 425 dis­tin­guished sci­en­tists and engi­neers whose careers spanned decades of research and development.

Marks’ research focuses on the design, syn­the­sis and in-depth char­ac­ter­i­za­tion of new sub­stances hav­ing impor­tant chem­i­cal, phys­i­cal and/or bio­log­i­cal prop­er­ties. His work is cred­ited with hav­ing major impact on con­tem­po­rary catal­y­sis with sem­i­nal research in the areas of organo-f-element homo­ge­neous catal­y­sis, metal-ligand bond­ing ener­get­ics, sup­ported organometal­lic catal­y­sis and met­al­locene poly­mer­iza­tion catal­y­sis. Tobin joined North­west­ern in 1970, and is a leader in the devel­op­ment and under­stand­ing of single-site olefin poly­mer­iza­tion catal­y­sis (now a multi­bil­lion dol­lar indus­try) as well as in the study of new mate­ri­als hav­ing remark­able elec­tri­cal, mechan­i­cal, inter­fa­cial and pho­tonic prop­er­ties. He designed a co-catalyst that led to what is now a stan­dard process for pro­duc­ing bet­ter poly­olefins, includ­ing poly­eth­yl­ene and polypropy­lene. Found in every­thing from sand­wich wrap to long under­wear, these ver­sa­tile and inex­pen­sive plas­tics are lighter in weight and more recy­clable than pre­vi­ous plas­tics. In his mol­e­c­u­lar opto­elec­tron­ics work, Marks designs arrays of “smart” mol­e­cules that will self-assemble into, or spon­ta­neously form, struc­tures that can con­duct elec­tric­ity, switch light on and off, detect light and turn sun­light into elec­tric­ity. These struc­tures could lead to the world’s most ver­sa­tile and sta­ble light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and to flex­i­ble “plas­tic” transistors.

Gabor Somorjai wins ACS Priestley Medal

Pro­fes­sor Gabor Somor­jai of the Uni­ver­sity of Cal­i­for­nia at Berke­ley was selected as the ACS Priest­ley Medal Awardee for 2008. The Priest­ley Medal is the high­est honor of the Amer­i­can Chem­i­cal Soci­ety (ACS) and is named for Joseph Priest­ley, who reported the dis­cov­ery of oxy­gen in 1774. Gabor is receiv­ing this award, which will be pre­sented at the spring 2008 ACS national meet­ing, “for extra­or­di­nar­ily cre­ative and orig­i­nal con­tri­bu­tions to sur­face sci­ence and catal­y­sis.” Widely rec­og­nized by his peers as the father of mod­ern sur­face sci­ence, he has authored more than 1,000 sci­en­tific papers and three text­books on sur­face chem­istry and het­ero­ge­neous catal­y­sis, and has men­tored more than 300 Ph.D. stu­dents and post­doc­toral fellows.

Jim Dumesic is the 2007 Robert Burwell Lecturer

The North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety is pleased to announce that Pro­fes­sor James A. Dumesic is the recip­i­ent of the 2007 Robert Bur­well Lec­ture­ship in Catal­y­sis. Jim is the Steen­bock Pro­fes­sor of Chem­i­cal and Bio­log­i­cal Engi­neer­ing at the Uni­ver­sity of Wis­con­sin, in Madi­son, Wis­con­sin. This award is spon­sored by John­son Matthey Cat­a­lysts Com­pany and admin­is­tered by the Soci­ety. The award con­sists of a plaque and an hon­o­rar­ium as well as a travel award to pro­vide the recip­i­ent with funds for vis­it­ing any of the 14 local clubs com­pris­ing the Soci­ety. The award is given in recog­ni­tion of sub­stan­tial con­tri­bu­tions to one or more areas in the field of catal­y­sis with empha­sis on dis­cov­ery and under­stand­ing of cat­alytic phe­nom­ena, cat­alytic reac­tion mech­a­nisms and iden­ti­fi­ca­tion and descrip­tion of cat­alytic sites and species.

Bob Bur­well was a cat­alytic explorer who used a com­bi­na­tion of chem­i­cal knowl­edge and insa­tiable curios­ity to dra­mat­i­cally expand the under­stand­ing of catal­y­sis. It is a hard act to emu­late, but Jim Dumesic’s excel­lence, lead­er­ship, and suc­ces­sion of impor­tant con­tri­bu­tions to het­ero­ge­neous catal­y­sis make him an ideal recip­i­ent for this pres­ti­gious award. He set the bar high in his grad­u­ate work extend­ing the use of Möss­bauer spec­troscopy to relate mag­netic prop­er­ties of small par­ti­cles to their struc­ture and using that and other surface-specific mea­sure­ments to explain the struc­ture sen­si­tiv­ity of iron ammo­nia syn­the­sis cat­a­lysts. Early in his career at Wis­con­sin he con­tin­ued to com­bine spec­tro­scopic and adsorp­tion meth­ods to a widen­ing vari­ety of prob­lems, adding IR to the spec­tro­scopic analy­sis and pio­neer­ing the use of calorime­try to gain new infor­ma­tion on the ener­get­ics of adsorp­tion and the ener­getic het­ero­gene­ity of sur­face sites. His devel­op­ment of micro­ki­netic analy­sis in the early 90’s set a new stan­dard for the mod­el­ing of the kinetic behav­ior of cat­alytic sys­tems, com­bin­ing knowl­edge of gas/solid behav­ior over a wide range of con­di­tions and extend­ing that knowl­edge with quan­tum com­pu­ta­tions to pro­duce self con­sis­tent, robust quan­ti­ta­tive pre­dic­tions of per­for­mance. One of many exam­ples of the power of the method is his ele­gant dis­sec­tion of the kinet­ics of cat­alytic crack­ing. This superb body of work helped to earn him the Col­burn and Wil­helm Awards of AIChE, the Emmett Award, and Elec­tion to the National Acad­emy of Engi­neer­ing in 1998. Remark­ably, over the past five years he rev­o­lu­tion­ized the field of catal­y­sis yet again by open­ing new direc­tions for the gen­er­a­tion of chem­i­cals and fuels from bio­mass. He is quoted at the end of a fea­ture Sci­ence arti­cle on his bio­mass work as say­ing “…no mat­ter how tech­nolo­gies for bio­fu­els and biore­fin­ing evolve, catal­y­sis is sure to be an impor­tant part of the mix”. The pic­ture of Jim’s con­tri­bu­tions to catal­y­sis would not be com­plete with­out men­tion of his ser­vice to the catal­y­sis com­mu­nity and his teach­ing. He was the Edi­tor of the Jour­nal of Mol­e­c­u­lar Catal­y­sis and until recently Asso­ciate Edi­tor of the Jour­nal of Catal­y­sis. His teach­ing con­tri­bu­tions were rec­og­nized by the Poly­gon Award and the Ben­jamin Smith Reynolds Award of the Uni­ver­sity of Wis­con­sin. His lec­tures in tech­ni­cal meet­ings are known for the clar­ity and the amus­ing vignettes he always adds. He has over 300 pub­li­ca­tions in col­lab­o­ra­tion with more than 40 PhD stu­dents who occupy promi­nent posi­tions in acad­e­mia and industry.

Local clubs should con­tact Pro­fes­sor Dumesic [dumesic@engr.wisc.edu] directly about speak­ing engage­ments over the next two years. More infor­ma­tion on this award, the awards process, and pre­vi­ous awardees can be found inside the Awards folder on the NACS home page: www.nacatsoc.org

Professor Robert Davis has been selected for the 2007 Paul H. Emmett Award in Fundamental Catalysis

Pro­fes­sor Robert Davis has been selected for the 2007 Paul H. Emmett Award in Fun­da­men­tal Catal­y­sis. The award con­sists of a plaque and a prize. The pur­pose of the Award is to rec­og­nize and encour­age indi­vid­ual con­tri­bu­tions (under the age of 45) in the field of catal­y­sis with empha­sis on dis­cov­ery and under­stand­ing of cat­alytic phe­nom­ena, pro­posal of cat­alytic reac­tion mech­a­nisms and iden­ti­fi­ca­tion of and descrip­tion of cat­alytic sites and species.

Since 2002 Bob has been Pro­fes­sor and Chair of the Depart­ment of Chem­i­cal Engi­neer­ing, Uni­ver­sity of Vir­ginia, Char­lottesville, Vir­ginia. Bob has made numer­ous last­ing con­tri­bu­tions to the fun­da­men­tal sci­ence of het­ero­ge­neous catal­y­sis with excep­tional advances in acid, base, bifunc­tional acid/base, and base-promoted metal catal­y­sis. He is rec­og­nized here for his pio­neer­ing con­tri­bu­tions to the use of in-situ spec­tro­scopic meth­ods cou­pled with both steady-state and tran­sient kinetic meth­ods to elu­ci­date how oxide sup­ports and basic pro­mot­ers alter the active cat­alytic sites for a vari­ety of reac­tions, includ­ing the selec­tive oxi­da­tion of hydro­car­bons, acid/base con­ver­sions, and ammo­nia syn­the­sis. A dis­tin­guish­ing char­ac­ter­is­tic of Bob’s research is its inte­gra­tion of mul­ti­ple exper­i­men­tal tech­niques for char­ac­ter­iz­ing het­ero­ge­neous cat­a­lysts and the kinet­ics of reac­tions occur­ring on their sur­faces. Bob has employed a com­pre­hen­sive set of spec­tro­scopic tools includ­ing extended X-ray absorp­tion fine struc­ture, X-ray absorp­tion near-edge struc­ture, infrared, Raman, nuclear mag­netic and elec­tron spin res­o­nance, adsorp­tion microcalorime­try, elec­tron microscopy together with steady state as well as tran­sient kinetic analy­ses to deter­mine the local elec­tronic and geo­met­ric struc­ture of the active site(s), the influ­ence local envi­ron­ment, and the reac­tiv­ity of novel sup­ported cat­a­lysts under work­ing con­di­tions. This wide array of tools has enabled him to dis­cover the fun­da­men­tal fea­tures that con­trol a wide range of impor­tant cat­alytic systems.

In addi­tion to his out­stand­ing research accom­plish­ments, Bob has proven to be a leader in edu­cat­ing stu­dents and advanc­ing the field of catal­y­sis and reac­tion engi­neer­ing. He is the co-author of a rel­a­tively new undergraduate/graduate text­book “Fun­da­men­tals of Chem­i­cal Reac­tion Engi­neer­ing” pub­lished by McGraw-Hill. His lead­er­ship has also been well rec­og­nized by the field as Bob has cho­sen to lead the pro­gram­ming efforts for Catal­y­sis in the Divi­sion of Catal­y­sis and Reac­tion Engi­neer­ing of the Amer­i­can Insti­tute of Chem­i­cal Engi­neers and cur­rently serves as a Divi­sion Direc­tor. He has also orga­nized and par­tic­i­pated in a num­ber of work­shops to pro­mote catal­y­sis in Asia, South Amer­ica and Africa for the National Sci­ence Foun­da­tion. He is one of the founders as well as the past Pres­i­dent of the South­east­ern Catal­y­sis Soci­ety. He also recently chaired the 2006 Gor­don Con­fer­ence on Catalysis.

Bob will give a ple­nary lec­ture and be rec­og­nized at the 2007 North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety meet­ing in Hous­ton. The Paul H. Emmett Award in Fun­da­men­tal Catal­y­sis is spon­sored by the Davi­son Chem­i­cal Divi­sion of W.R. Grace and Com­pany. It is admin­is­tered by The North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety and is awarded bien­ni­ally in odd num­bered years. More infor­ma­tion on this award, the awards process, and pre­vi­ous awardees can be found inside the Awards folder on the NACS home page: www.nacatsoc.org.

New Award: Michel Boudart Award for the Advancement of Catalysis

Michel Boudart Award for the Advance­ment of Catalysis

 
An Award pre­sented jointly by the North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety and the Euro­pean Fed­er­a­tion of Catal­y­sis Societies.

The Michel Boudart Award for the Advance­ment of Catal­y­sis is spon­sored by the Hal­dor Top­søe Com­pany, and is admin­is­tered jointly by the North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety and the Euro­pean Fed­er­a­tion of Catal­y­sis Soci­eties. The Award will be pre­sented bien­ni­ally in odd num­bered years. The recip­i­ent will give ple­nary lec­tures at the bian­nual meet­ings of the North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety (NAM) and the Euro­pean Fed­er­a­tion of Catal­y­sis Soci­eties (EFCATS) (EuropaCat). The award con­sists of a plaque or object of art and a prize of $6,000. Up to an addi­tional $2,000 will be made avail­able for oth­er­wise non-reimbursed travel expenses.

The Award rec­og­nizes and encour­ages indi­vid­ual con­tri­bu­tions to the elu­ci­da­tion of the mech­a­nism and active sites involved in cat­alytic phe­nom­ena and to the devel­op­ment of new meth­ods or con­cepts that advance the under­stand­ing and/or prac­tice of het­ero­ge­neous catal­y­sis. The Award selec­tion process will empha­size accom­plish­ments and con­tri­bu­tions pub­lished within the five pre­ced­ing years. Can­di­dates may be nom­i­nated with­out any restric­tion of national ori­gin, thus reflect­ing the inter­na­tional scope of the career and con­tri­bu­tions of Michel Boudart.

The recip­i­ent of the Michel Boudart Award will be selected by a com­mit­tee of renowned researchers appointed jointly by the Pres­i­dents of the North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety and the Euro­pean Fed­er­a­tion of Catal­y­sis Soci­eties. The selec­tion shall be made with­out regard for age, sex, affil­i­a­tion, or national origin.

Nom­i­na­tions should clearly state the qual­i­fi­ca­tions and accom­plish­ments of the nom­i­nee and should also include a bio­graph­i­cal note and two sup­port­ing let­ters. A crit­i­cal eval­u­a­tion of the sig­nif­i­cance of pub­li­ca­tions and patents should be made, as well as a state­ment of the par­tic­u­lar contribution(s) on which the nom­i­na­tion is based.
One com­plete elec­tronic copy of the nom­i­na­tion pack­ages for the 2007 Boudart Award should be sent to the Pres­i­dent of The North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety (John Armor; jnagcat@verizon.net) or the Pres­i­dent of The Euro­pean Fed­er­a­tion of the Euro­pean Catal­y­sis Soci­eties (Roel Prins; prins@tech.chem.ethz.ch) by 20 Novem­ber 2006.

2007 Eugene J. Houdry Award to Stacey Zones

The 2007 Eugene J. Houdry Award in Applied Catal­y­sis to Dr. Zones of Chevron Energy Tech­nol­ogy Com­pany, Rich­mond, CA, USA. The award is spon­sored by Süd-Chemie, Inc., and admin­is­tered by the North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety. The pur­pose of the Award is to rec­og­nize and encour­age indi­vid­ual con­tri­bu­tions in the field of catal­y­sis with empha­sis on the devel­op­ment of new and improved cat­a­lysts and processes rep­re­sent­ing out­stand­ing advances in their use­ful application.

Dr. Zones pri­mary focus has been in the area of zeo­lites and zeo­lite cat­a­lysts. He has invented over 20 new zeo­lite mate­ri­als. Per­haps Stacey’s most impor­tant com­mer­cial work has been the devel­op­ment of a pro­pri­etary zeo­lite that he invented and is used in the extremely suc­cess­ful sec­ond gen­er­a­tion Isode­wax­ing® cat­a­lyst. This con­tri­bu­tion has led to the expan­sion of the feeds use­ful for the prepa­ra­tion of lubri­cant oils, via the appli­ca­tion of cat­alytic dewax­ing. It was first suc­cess­fully com­mer­cial­ized in a refin­ery in 1996. Since then Dr. Zones has played a role in Chevron’s Cat­a­lyst Group and Tech­nol­ogy Mar­ket­ing orga­ni­za­tions in devel­op­ing other zeolite-based tech­nolo­gies for use in refin­ing, sep­a­ra­tions, and petro­chem­i­cal appli­ca­tions. In addi­tion, Dr. Zones has focused on scal­ing up zeo­lite syn­the­sis routes, via the devel­op­ment of more cost-effective approaches.

Stacey will give a ple­nary lec­ture and be rec­og­nized at the 2007 North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety meet­ing in Hous­ton. More infor­ma­tion on this award, the awards process, and pre­vi­ous awardees can be found inside the Awards folder on the NACS home page: www.nacatsoc.org.

ORCS Presents Three Awards at 21st Conference

Three recip­i­ents were selected to receive awards for excel­lence in organic catal­y­sis at the 21st Con­fer­ence of the Organic Reac­tions Catal­y­sis Society(www.orcs.org) spon­sored by the Organic Reac­tions Catal­y­sis Society(ORCS) on the week of April 2, 2006 in Orlando, Florida. The 2005 Paul N. Rylan­der Award went to Dr. Jean-Marie Bas­set, Lab­o­ra­toire de Chimie Organomet­allique de Sur­face, CNRS, Lyon, France and the 2006 Paul N. Rylan­der Award was pre­sented to Pro­fes­sor Gadi Rothen­berg, Uni­ver­sity of Ams­ter­dam, The Nether­lands. The 2006 Mur­ray Raney Award, spon­sored by the W. R. Grace Co., was pre­sented to Pro­fes­sor Isamu Yamauchi, Osaka Uni­ver­sity, Japan.

The Paul N. Rylan­der Award is an annual award, spon­sored by ORCS, made to an indi­vid­ual who has made sig­nif­i­cant con­tri­bu­tions to the use of catal­y­sis in organic reac­tions as exem­pli­fied by Paul N. Rylan­der. The Mur­ray Raney Award is made to an indi­vid­ual who has made sig­nif­i­cant con­tri­bu­tions to chem­istry and the chem­istry indus­try via cat­a­lyst tech­nol­ogy based on that orig­i­nally devel­oped by Mur­ray Raney.

Bassett’s research has been on the fore­front of the cor­re­la­tion of reac­tions which occur at the active sites of het­ero­g­e­nized sur­face organomet­al­l­lic cat­a­lysts and solu­tion phase reac­tions of organometal­lic cat­a­lysts. This has allowed him to design well defined sur­face cat­a­lysts that cat­alyze reac­tions that some­times won’t occur in the homo­ge­neous phase. His pre­sen­ta­tion was titled “New Cat­alytic Reac­tions Dis­cov­ered via Sur­face Organometal­lic Chemistry”.

Rothenberg’s research has pro­vided novel, ligand-free cat­a­lysts for carbon-carbon cou­pling reac­tions, as well as unique cat­a­lysts for selec­tive oxida­tive dehy­dro­gena­tion. Recently he has devel­oped high-throughput data analy­sis meth­ods and cat­a­lyst descrip­tor mod­els to bet­ter find the best homo­ge­neous cat­a­lyst for a par­tic­u­lar trans­for­ma­tion. His pre­sen­ta­tion was enti­tled “How to Find the Best Homo­ge­neous Catalyst”.

Yamauchi’s research inves­ti­gated improved meth­ods for prepar­ing pre­cur­sors to skele­tal cat­a­lysts, novel bimetal­lic com­po­si­tions, and appli­ca­tion of improved cop­per cat­a­lysts to the hydra­tion of acry­loni­trile and hydro­gena­tion of car­bon diox­ide. His talk was enti­tled “Syn­the­sis and Fea­tures of New Raney Cat­a­lysts from Metastable Precursors”.

The pro­ceed­ings of the meet­ing includ­ing the award addresses will appear in a future vol­ume of the Chem­i­cal Indus­tries series.