Dr. James C. Stevens, Corporate Fellow of the The Dow Chemical Company, is the recipient of the 2011 Eugene J. Houdry Award in Applied Catalysis of the North American Catalysis Society, sponsored by Süd-Chemie, Inc. and administered by the Catalysis Society. This award recognizes and encourages 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, which will be presented at the 22nd North American Meeting of the Catalysis Society to be held in Detroit, Michigan on June 5–10, 2011, during which Dr. Stevens will present his Award Plenary lecture.
The 2011 Eugene J. Houdry Award recognizes Dr. Stevens for his outstanding contributions to the industrially important field of polyolefin catalysis. Dr. Stevens led breakthrough research efforts that fostered some of most significant recent advances in polyolefins technology. These innovations include the development and commercial implementation of INSITE™ Technology and Constrained–Geometry Catalysts, which has led to the production of more than 2 billion pounds of polyolefins per year.
Dr. Stevens’ track record in extending the boundaries of new catalysis technologies and in using his extensive industrial and engineering knowledge to translate early-stage discoveries into commercial successes have been especially evident in his leadership in the area of high throughput research methods through collaborative research with other institutions. The translation of concepts from such methods to investigations of homogeneous catalyst systems presented significant challenges, among them the need for screening processes to account for the stringent requirements associated with the ultimate production of these materials at commercial scale. His research group has developed novel “chain-shuttling” processes, in which polyolefin chains are rapidly exchanged between two single-site catalytic centers to create, catalytically for the first time, olefin block copolymers with thousands of polymer chains produced per catalyst molecule. These INFUSE™ Olefin Block Co-Polymers were recently awarded a R&D 100 Award for New Materials.
The achievements of Dr. Stevens have been previously recognized with awards from the American Chemical Society and various international scientific organizations. Dr. Stevens was a key contributor to the body of Dow research that received the highest honor bestowed by the United States government for technological achievements, the National Medal of Technology.