The 2013 Eugene J. Houdry Award recognizes Giuseppe Bellussi for his important contributions to the development of several key processes in petrochemicals and refining through research in new catalytic materials, in fundamental understanding of underlying catalytic phenomena, and in enabling engineering concepts for catalytic processes.
Dr. Bellussi joined the Eni Company in 1981. Since then, he has been engaged in research and development of new technologies with broad impact in refining, petrochemicals, and exploration-production. His specific contributions have focused on heterogeneous catalysis, with specific emphasis on the science and technology of zeolite catalysts. These contributions have ranged from selective oxidation reactions to acid catalysis with broad applications to natural gas conversion, the upgrading of heavy residues, and the synthesis of new structured materials. Many of these achievements have contributed to industrial applications, such as in oxidations with hydrogen peroxide on titanium-silicalite (TS‑1) catalysts for the production of di-phenols, cyclohexanone oxime and propylene oxide and the alkylation of benzene by light olefins to ethylbenzene or cumene on Beta-zeolites. Most recently, Dr. Bellussi has been involved in the development of a gas-to-liquids technology based on Fischer-Tropsch synthesis in slurry phase reactor and of the EST (Eni Slurry Technology) for upgrading of heavy oils to clean high-quality distillates without concurrent formation of coke and other by-products.
He has been recognized for these contributions with the 1994 Don Breck Award of the International Zeolite Association, which he shared with Eni colleagues for the development of TS-1-based catalysts, the 2003 Johnson Matthey Award for innovation in catalysis, the 2007 International Zeolite Association Award for seminal contributions to the science and applications of zeolites, and the 2008 “Prof. P. Pino” Gold Medal from the Industrial Chemistry Division of Italian Chemical Society. Since 2010, Dr. Bellussi has been the President of the International Zeolite Association.