Summary of San Francisco Meeting of Board of Director’s Meeting, June 2009

As one of my final tasks, I would like to pro­vide some high­lights from actions of your Board of Direc­tors at their annu­al meet­ing in San Fran­cis­co. The four new Direc­tors-at-Large were seat­ed (B. Gates, S. Soled, Bob Davis, and Jing­guang Chen). The Board dis­cussed the ques­tion of cre­at­ing stu­dent chap­ters in addi­tion to local clubs. The Board encour­ages under­grad­u­ate stu­dents to get involved with the local catal­y­sis club by con­tact­ing any one of the offi­cers or club rep­re­sen­ta­tive list­ed on the NACS web­site (

  • Pri­or to our elec­tions of offi­cers, we cre­at­ed a new offi­cer role, that of Lead Trustee, who is in charge of guid­ing the invest­ments of the Soci­ety. Fur­ther, in this time of rapid and elec­tron­ic com­mu­ni­ca­tions, most felt that the posi­tion of For­eign Sec­re­tary in addi­tion to Sec­re­tary was super­flu­ous, so we vot­ed to elim­i­nate the office of For­eign Sec­re­tary and dis­trib­ute the work among oth­er offi­cers. In this regard, I want to espe­cial­ly thank W. Curt Con­ner for his many years of valu­able ser­vice to the Soci­ety in the role of For­eign Sec­re­tary.
  • The Board also agreed to direct our offi­cers to con­trol expens­es to assure that they don’t exceed our income. There was a unan­i­mous feel­ing that in sup­port­ing a num­ber of edu­ca­tion­al mis­sions, we, as a Soci­ety, should not spend more mon­ey than we can earn from invest­ments and mem­ber­ship fees.
  • The new NACS offi­cers for 2009–2013 are Pres­i­dent, Enrique Igle­sia, Vice Pres­i­dent, Bruce Cook, Trea­sur­er, CY Chen, Sec­re­tary, H‑X Li, Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Direc­tor, Edrick Morales, and John Byrne, Lead Trustee.
  • The Board agreed to make it stan­dard pol­i­cy in future meet­ings (as has been the case for the last 2 NAM meet­ings) that record­ing meet­ing events through audio­vi­su­al or pho­to­graph­ic meth­ods is pro­hib­it­ed at all NAM events with­out con­sent of the pre­sen­ter. Also, since dues col­lec­tion and time­ly lists of local club offi­cers is crit­i­cal to the year­ly oper­a­tion of the NACS, pay­ments of local club year­ly stu­dent awards will be con­di­tioned upon hav­ing a cur­rent mem­ber­ship list and up-to-date dues pay­ments.
  • The meet­ing Chair (Galen Fish­er) of the 22nd NAM, oper­at­ed through the Michi­gan Catal­y­sis Soci­ety sum­ma­rized their prepa­ra­tions for the June 2011 meet­ing in Detroit, Michi­gan. The Tri-State Club rep­re­sen­ta­tive, Jür­gen Lade­beck, sum­ma­rized their ear­ly efforts in orga­niz­ing the 23rd NAM meet­ing in Louisville, Ken­tucky in June of 2013.

With the suc­cess­ful con­clu­sion of the 21st NAM in San Fran­cis­co, I want to per­son­al­ly thank the co-chairs (Enrique Igle­sia, Bruce Gates, and Char­lie Wil­son) and their orga­niz­ing com­mit­tee for their tire­less activ­i­ties and their com­mit­ment.
John Armor

Final message from your former president

I strong­ly believe that orga­ni­za­tions ben­e­fit from change of lead­er­ship; new blood can inject new ideas and vital­i­ty into an orga­ni­za­tion; I think now is a good time for me to step aside. At the San Fran­cis­co Board meet­ing, I made it clear to the Board that I did not wish to con­tin­ue for anoth­er four years as an offi­cer. I have served as your Pres­i­dent for 8 years and as Trea­sur­er for 7 years; two very demand­ing, vol­un­teer roles. Dur­ing this 15 year peri­od, I have enjoyed rep­re­sent­ing and lead­ing the Soci­ety, and I thank you all for that priv­i­lege.

I have tried to ensure that anoth­er strong suite of offi­cers replaces those who also chose to step aside at the recent round of elec­tions. At the same time I wish to thank those offi­cers who worked tire­less­ly with me over these many years to improve our orga­ni­za­tion. The North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety is a strong and sound pro­fes­sion­al soci­ety that has worked hard to enhance the edu­ca­tion­al activ­i­ties which it seeks to pro­vide the mem­bers.

I also wish to thank not only the offi­cers, but the many club rep­re­sen­ta­tives who worked with me and the Board to insti­tute many pos­i­tive changes to our Soci­ety. We are much stronger as a pro­fes­sion­al orga­ni­za­tion and finan­cial­ly very sound; we have a pop­u­lar web­site which has gen­er­at­ed over 150,000 hits over the past 8 years. In this time, we’ve grown the num­ber of par­tic­i­pat­ing clubs, up-dat­ed the Bylaws, enhanced our nation­al awards, strength­ened a large trust to pur­sue the edu­ca­tion­al needs of the mem­ber­ship (Kei­th Hall Edu­ca­tion­al Fund), sub­stan­tial­ly increased the dol­lar val­ue and num­ber of stu­dent awards, gen­er­at­ed a lot of doc­u­men­ta­tion on the his­to­ry and impor­tance of catal­y­sis (post­ed on our web­site), and ini­ti­at­ed many oth­er pos­i­tive steps in grow­ing our Soci­ety.

I take great pride and thank you for the hon­or in serv­ing as your past Pres­i­dent, and I look for­ward to under­tak­ing new tasks to advance cat­alyt­ic sci­ence in North Amer­i­can and glob­al­ly.
John Armor
June 30, 2009

Rostam Madon receives the 2009 AIChE Catalysis and Reaction Engineering Practice Award

The Catal­y­sis and Reac­tion Engi­neer­ing (CRE) Divi­sion of the Amer­i­can Insti­tute of Chem­i­cal Engi­neers (AIChE) is delight­ed to announce that Ros­tam J. Madon of BASF Cat­a­lysts, LLC has been select­ed as the recip­i­ent of the AIChE CRE Divi­sion Prac­tice Award for 2009. This award rec­og­nizes indi­vid­u­als who have made pio­neer­ing con­tri­bu­tions to indus­tri­al prac­tice of catal­y­sis and chem­i­cal reac­tion engi­neer­ing. The can­di­date must have made impor­tant and spe­cif­ic tech­ni­cal con­tri­bu­tions, ver­i­fi­able by means of well-doc­u­ment­ed evi­den­tial mate­ri­als, to the inven­tion, devel­op­ment, design or imple­men­ta­tion of indus­tri­al prod­ucts, cat­a­lysts or process­es through inge­nious and cre­ative appli­ca­tion of chem­i­cal reac­tion engi­neer­ing and/or catal­y­sis con­cepts. Awardees are select­ed based on their con­tri­bu­tions to the dis­cov­ery and appli­ca­tion of inno­v­a­tive catal­y­sis or reac­tion engi­neer­ing solu­tions to tech­no­log­i­cal prob­lems, and/or com­mer­cial­iza­tion of new prod­ucts and process­es. The award con­sists of a plaque and cash award of $1,000 to be pre­sent­ed at the Divi­sion Recep­tion dur­ing the AIChE annu­al meet­ing in Nashville, Ten­nessee. A spe­cial ses­sion will be held in hon­or of the recip­i­ent at the annu­al meet­ing dur­ing which he will also present a lec­ture.

Ross Madon has made pio­neer­ing con­tri­bu­tions of remark­able breadth and depth to the chem­istry and engi­neer­ing of cat­alyt­ic process­es. Ear­ly in his career, he guid­ed the field by address­ing arti­facts in kinet­ic data using meth­ods that are accept­ed today as defin­i­tive cri­te­ria for kinet­ic con­trol in catal­y­sis. In the process, he brought tran­si­tion state for­malisms for ther­mo­dy­nam­i­cal­ly non-ide­al sys­tems, first intro­duced by his advi­sor Michel Boudart, into the realm of prac­ti­cal catal­y­sis. His con­tri­bu­tions to cat­a­lyst design for Fis­ch­er-Trop­sch syn­the­sis and cat­alyt­ic crack­ing, two of the most hydro­dy­nam­i­cal­ly, kinet­i­cal­ly, and mol­e­c­u­lar­ly com­plex reac­tion sys­tems known, illus­trate his unique abil­i­ty to con­tribute con­cepts and approach­es to sys­tems that oth­ers avoid or mere­ly mis­in­ter­pret because of their com­plex­i­ty. Ross Madon excels at the inter­face of chem­istry and engi­neer­ing and his achieve­ments bridge con­cep­tu­al advances with com­mer­cial cat­a­lysts and cat­alyt­ic tech­nolo­gies. Recent­ly, he elu­ci­dat­ed the mech­a­nism by which vana­di­um caus­es struc­tur­al degra­da­tion of FCC cat­a­lysts and used this under­stand­ing to min­i­mize its dele­te­ri­ous effect. His stud­ies have pro­vid­ed a def­i­nite assess­ment of the role of ZSM‑5 addi­tives in FCC to replace inac­cu­rate or phe­nom­e­no­log­i­cal descrip­tions of such phe­nom­e­na. His kinet­ic treat­ments of FCC catal­y­sis brought fun­da­men­tal chem­i­cal insights into a sys­tem once con­sid­ered too com­plex for such rig­or. Ross then used the knowl­edge to go beyond its schol­ar­ly ele­gance and designed com­mer­cial FCC cat­a­lysts based on such prin­ci­ples. He is the coin­ven­tor and devel­op­er of the Redux­ion – Max­ol® fam­i­ly of FCC cat­a­lysts and of the Iso­Plus® and Ultri­um® fam­i­lies. He coin­vent­ed the Flex-Tec® resid crack­ing cat­a­lyst which has been wide­ly and suc­cess­ful­ly deployed in demand­ing resid cat crack­ing process­es. He has thrived in indus­tri­al set­tings, but his thought process and con­cep­tu­al approach is firm­ly plant­ed in the realm of thought­ful sci­ence. He has tack­led tru­ly dif­fi­cult prob­lems and tak­en them beyond where oth­ers could, with ele­gance and rig­or bal­anced by rel­e­vance and impact.

AIChE Catalysis and Reaction Engineering Practice Award

The AIChE Catal­y­sis & Reac­tion Engi­neer­ing Divi­sion has asked the NACS to pub­li­cize its Prac­tice Award nom­i­na­tion request. This AIChE award is giv­en to rec­og­nize con­tri­bu­tions in catal­y­sis and reac­tion engi­neer­ing that solve tech­no­log­i­cal prob­lems and/or lead to com­mer­cial­iza­tion of new prod­ucts or process­es.

This award rec­og­nizes indi­vid­u­als who have made pio­neer­ing con­tri­bu­tions to indus­tri­al prac­tice of catal­y­sis and chem­i­cal reac­tion engi­neer­ing. The can­di­date must have made impor­tant and spe­cif­ic tech­ni­cal con­tri­bu­tions, ver­i­fi­able by means of well-doc­u­ment­ed evi­den­tial mate­ri­als, to the inven­tion, devel­op­ment, design or imple­men­ta­tion of indus­tri­al prod­ucts, cat­a­lysts or process­es through inge­nious and cre­ative appli­ca­tion of chem­i­cal reac­tion engi­neer­ing and/or catal­y­sis con­cepts. Awardees will be select­ed based on their con­tri­bu­tions to the dis­cov­ery and appli­ca­tion of inno­v­a­tive catal­y­sis or reac­tion engi­neer­ing solu­tions to tech­no­log­i­cal prob­lems, and/or com­mer­cial­iza­tion of new prod­ucts and process­es. Can­di­date must be an AIChE mem­ber. Can­di­dates may be from acad­e­mia, nation­al labs, or indus­try. Dead­line for nom­i­na­tions is May 15, 2009. Fur­ther details at the AIChE address below. Sub­mit the nom­i­na­tion via e‑mail to the CRE Divi­sion Vice-Chair: Fabio H. Ribeiro,; Phone: 765–494-7799.

The announce­ment can also be found at

Bruce C. Gates is the 2009 Robert Burwell Lecturer

The North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety is pleased to announce that Pro­fes­sor Bruce Gates is the recip­i­ent of the 2009 Robert Bur­well Lec­ture­ship in Catal­y­sis. Since 1992 Bruce has been on the fac­ul­ty of the Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia at Davis, where he has the title of Dis­tin­guished Pro­fes­sor of Chem­i­cal Engi­neer­ing. His inter­ests include Catal­y­sis, Cat­alyt­ic Reac­tors, Chem­i­cal Reac­tion Engi­neer­ing, Mate­r­i­al Micro Struc­ture, and Sol-Gel Pro­cess­ing.

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 (until funds run out) 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.

For almost 40 years he has made sig­nif­i­cant con­tri­bu­tions in three areas: the prepa­ra­tion and char­ac­ter­i­za­tion of sur­face organometal­lic com­plex­es, catal­y­sis by strong sol­id acids, and the kinet­ics and reac­tion path­ways of hydropro­cess­ing catal­y­sis. In the catal­y­sis by strong sol­id acids, Bruce both expand­ed the appli­ca­tions and fur­thered under­stand­ing of under­ly­ing mech­a­nisms. More recent­ly, in a series of papers begin­ning in 1998, Bruce (with Bob Gras­sel­li and Hel­mut Knözinger) explained the sur­face chem­istry of tungstat­ed zir­co­nias with and with­out Pt, high­light­ing the role of sur­face reduc­tion to W5+ and –OH in gen­er­at­ing the active sites for alka­ne iso­mer­iza­tion. Bruce’s con­tri­bu­tions to hydropro­cess­ing catal­y­sis are equal­ly notable. His two review arti­cles great­ly assist­ed those requir­ing intro­duc­tion to the field; each has been cit­ed in excess of 375 times. The sci­en­tif­ic con­tri­bu­tion was his recog­ni­tion (with James Katzer and George Schuit) that com­plex hydrodesul­fu­r­iza­tion and hydro­gena­tion net­works could be under­stood in terms of a small num­ber of reac­tions whose rates could be quan­ti­fied using mod­el sub­strates. One sup­port­er remarked that Bruce’s work in met­al clus­ters rev­o­lu­tion­ized the field of sur­face organometal­lic catal­y­sis. Here also he has authored wide­ly read reviews, and sev­er­al influ­en­tial, exten­sive­ly cit­ed papers. Much of this recent work has tar­get­ed catal­y­sis by gold clus­ters or nanocrys­tals, work char­ac­ter­ized by mul­ti-tech­nique cor­re­la­tion of cat­alyt­ic activ­i­ty to sur­face struc­ture, care­ful inter­pre­ta­tion of EXAFS data char­ac­ter­iz­ing sur­face coor­di­na­tion, and prop­er con­sid­er­a­tion of how the catal­y­sis alters the as-syn­the­sized mate­ri­als. Bruce was an ear­ly user and pro­po­nent of EXAFS and XANES in cat­a­lyst char­ac­ter­i­za­tion. Many “nanoscience” papers in the lit­er­a­ture today fol­low along paths he pio­neered years ago.

Final­ly it should be not­ed that Bruce has edu­cat­ed two gen­er­a­tions of cat­alyt­ic sci­en­tists and indus­tri­al prac­ti­tion­ers, through his wide­ly used teach­ing texts (“Chem­istry of Cat­alyt­ic Process­es” is a world­wide best sell­er), the many short cours­es he helped devel­op and teach (the one based on this book was taught for over 30 years at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Delaware, and at many indus­tri­al research cen­ters) and not least through his men­tor­ing of over 130 grad­u­ate stu­dents, post­docs and vis­it­ing sci­en­tists. Bruce has been a tire­less cheer­leader for the field of catal­y­sis and in all his lec­tures strives for under­stand­ing, arous­ing curios­i­ty, and get­ting down to the essen­tials of a prob­lem. He has also been a very active mem­ber of the Board of the North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety.

Local clubs should con­tact Pro­fes­sor Gates [] 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:

Results of Directors-at-Large Elections

The results are in on the recent Direc­tors-at-Large elec­tion, which were held by elec­tron­ic bal­lot­ing over the last 3 weeks. Four mem­bers from North Amer­i­ca are elect­ed every 4 years by the mem­ber­ship resid­ing in North Amer­i­ca to serve as nation­al rep­re­sen­ta­tives to the Board of Direc­tors. The 4 per­sons receiv­ing the most votes for Direc­tors-at-Large will begin serv­ing imme­di­ate­ly. Dur­ing the elec­tions for offi­cers at the June Board meet­ing, some of those same direc­tors may be elect­ed as an offi­cer of the NACS, in which case they will be replaced by one of 3 alter­nate Direc­tors-at-Large. The alter­nate Direc­tors-at-Large rep­re­sent the next 3 per­sons receiv­ing the most votes dur­ing this recent elec­tion. If, for some unex­pect­ed rea­son, a Direc­tors-at-Large can­not serve, they will be replaced from the pool of alter­nate Direc­tors-at-Large.

Four new Direc­tors-at-Large are

  • Bruce Gates
  • Robert Davis
  • Stu­art Soled
  • Jing­guang Chen
  • Alter­nate #1, Matthew Neu­rock
  • Alter­nate #2, Bruce Cook
  • Alter­nate #3, Christo­pher Mar­shall

John Armor
Pres­i­dent NACS

Elections underway

For mem­bers of the NACS resid­ing in North Amer­i­ca, the 2009 Direc­tors-at-Large elec­tion is under­way. For the first time, the NACS is using on-line bal­lot­ing as the only way to cast your vote for Direc­tors-at-Large. Please use the last name and pass­word pro­vid­ed in the first email to gain access to the restrict­ed vot­ing web­site. The link with the address of the vot­ing site will come in a sec­ond email short­ly after the first one. You can cast your vote after receiv­ing both emails. The vot­ing web page will be held open for three weeks until Feb­ru­ary 27th, 2009 at 11:59 PM. Your pass­word will be deac­ti­vat­ed after you record your vote.

Please select up to 4 mem­bers from a slate of 9 can­di­dates. For infor­ma­tion on the can­di­dates run­ning for elec­tion, please vis­it

Nominations open for Robert Burwell Lectureship In Catalysis

The Robert Bur­well Lec­ture­ship in Catal­y­sis is spon­sored by John­son Matthey Cat­a­lysts Divi­sion and admin­is­tered by The North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety. It is to be award­ed bien­ni­al­ly in odd-num­bered years. The award con­sists of a plaque and an hon­o­rar­i­um of $5,000. An addi­tion­al $4,500 is avail­able to cov­er trav­el­ling expens­es in North Amer­i­ca. The awardee is expect­ed to lec­ture at many of the local catal­y­sis clubs.

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. The Awardee will be select­ed on the basis of his/her con­tri­bu­tions to the cat­alyt­ic lit­er­a­ture and the cur­rent time­li­ness of these research con­tri­bu­tions. The recip­i­ent may be invit­ed to (1) vis­it and lec­ture to each of the affil­i­at­ed Clubs/Societies with which mutu­al­ly sat­is­fac­to­ry arrange­ments can be made and (2) pre­pare a review paper(s) for pub­li­ca­tion cov­er­ing these lec­tures. Pub­li­ca­tion will be in an appro­pri­ate peri­od­i­cal.

Selec­tion of the Award win­ner will be made by a com­mit­tee of renowned sci­en­tists and engi­neers appoint­ed by the Pres­i­dent of The North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety. Selec­tion shall be made with­out regard for age, sex, nation­al­i­ty or affil­i­a­tion. Posthu­mous awards will be made only when knowl­edge of the awardee’s death is received after announce­ment of the Award Com­mit­tee’s deci­sion. Nom­i­na­tion pack­ages should indi­cate the nom­i­nee’s qual­i­fi­ca­tions, accom­plish­ments with CV, a nom­i­nat­ing let­ter, no more than two sec­ond­ing let­ters and a biog­ra­phy of the nom­i­nee. A crit­i­cal eval­u­a­tion of the sig­nif­i­cance of can­di­date’s qual­i­fi­ca­tions should be made as well as a state­ment of the par­tic­u­lar contribution(s) on which the nom­i­na­tion is based. Nom­i­na­tion pack­ages for the Award must be received by on March 1 2009 in one com­plete pack­age.

All nom­i­na­tion pack­ages (one ELECTRONIC COPY) for the Bur­well Award should be sent to John Armor, Pres­i­dent, North Amer­i­can Catal­y­sis Soci­ety at . Receipt of any nom­i­na­tion, will be con­firmed by an email mes­sage sent to each nom­i­na­tor.

Announcement of Tanabe Prize Winner at ABC‑6

The inter­na­tion­al Acid Base Catal­y­sis (ABC) group is proud to announce the award­ing of the first Tan­abe Prize for Acid-Base Catal­y­sis to Pro­fes­sor Enrique Igle­sia of the Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­for­nia at Berke­ley.

The Tan­abe Prize for Acid Base Catal­y­sis is admin­is­tered by the Inter­na­tion­al Acid-Base Catal­y­sis (ABC) Group and spon­sored this year by the Exxon­Mo­bil Research and Engi­neer­ing Co. It is named to hon­or the lega­cy and accom­plish­ments of Pro­fes­sor Kozo Tan­abe, who pio­neered many of the mod­ern con­cepts in acid-base chem­istry. The prize will be pre­sent­ed at the ABC‑6 Con­fer­ence in Gen­o­va in May 2009 (6th world con­gress on Catal­y­sis by Acids and Bases, Gen­o­va, Italy, 10–14 May 2009;‑6.htm). The award con­sists of a plaque, an hon­o­rar­i­um, and trav­el expens­es to attend the meet­ing and present a ple­nary lec­ture. The Tan­abe prize rec­og­nizes sub­stan­tial con­tri­bu­tions to the field of acid and/or base catal­y­sis. It may be pre­sent­ed to either a young per­son who has demon­strat­ed unusu­al promise ear­ly in his/her career or to an indi­vid­ual of less than 56 years of age at the time of the ABC con­fer­ence at any career stage, who has made sig­nif­i­cant con­tri­bu­tions to the area with­in the six years pre­ced­ing the award.

Enrique is being rec­og­nized for his pio­neer­ing con­tri­bu­tions to the design and under­stand­ing of acid sites with­in spe­cif­ic struc­tures and for his dis­cov­ery of a new acid catal­y­sis route with impor­tant indus­tri­al rel­e­vance, in par­tic­u­lar for two of his more recent stud­ies, the first on shape selec­tive car­bony­la­tion and the sec­ond on het­eropoly com­pounds.

His recent sem­i­nal dis­cov­ery of shape selec­tive car­bony­la­tion with­in micro­p­orous zeo­lites, in which unprece­dent­ed speci­fici­ty for car­bony­la­tion reac­tions (very high rates of car­bony­la­tion along with selec­tiv­i­ties to methyl acetate greater than 99% achieved for DME (dimethylether) car­bony­la­tion). This sig­nif­i­cant increase in cat­alyt­ic per­for­mance was shown to be the result of the unique struc­tur­al and elec­tron­ic topogra­phies of 8‑member ring chan­nels. These high­ly active and selec­tive zeo­lites are ide­al replace­ments to the cost­ly, high­ly tox­ic and cor­ro­sive iodide-pro­mot­ed organometal­lic cat­a­lysts that are cur­rent­ly used in indus­try.

Also with­in the last five years Enrique has made a sig­nif­i­cant con­tri­bu­tion to the area of het­eropoly com­pounds as sol­id acids. Fol­low­ing the orig­i­nal con­tri­bu­tions of Pro­fes­sor Mis­ono, Enrique for­mu­lat­ed exact com­po­si­tion-func­tion rela­tions with pre­dic­tive val­ue by address­ing the reac­tiv­i­ty of POM mate­ri­als with vary­ing com­po­si­tion and hence, acid strength, and mea­sur­ing the cor­re­spond­ing kinet­ic and ther­mo­dy­nam­ic con­stants for ele­men­tary steps for alka­nol dehy­dra­tion reac­tions. In this work, the ubiq­ui­tous aggre­ga­tion and incom­plete envi­ron­ment depen­dent acces­si­bil­i­ty of POM clus­ters was min­i­mized by dis­pers­ing the POM clus­ters on sup­ports and prob­ing acces­si­bil­i­ty before and dur­ing cat­alyt­ic reac­tions using organ­ic bases of vary­ing polar­i­ty and size. His results, in col­lab­o­ra­tion with Pro­fes­sor M. Neurock’s for cal­cu­la­tions using DFT, have led to a quan­ti­ta­tive assess­ment of struc­tur­al and com­po­si­tion­al effects on the intrin­sic reac­tiv­i­ty of Brøn­st­ed acid sites on Keg­gin-type POM mate­ri­als. He showed that the effects of acid strength on the sta­bil­i­ty of cation­ic inter­me­di­ates and tran­si­tion states are par­tial­ly com­pen­sat­ed by the sta­bi­liza­tion of the ion-pair at the tran­si­tion state as acids become weak­er and the anion­ic con­ju­gate base acquires a high­er charge den­si­ty.

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 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).