Elsevier Announces the Winner of the 5th Ahmed Zewail Prize in Molecular Sciences

Professor Sir John Meurig Thomas from the University of Cambridge, UK is awarded the 5th Ahmed Zewail Prize for his outstanding contributions to the fundamental understanding of the structures of solids and development and application of the concept of single-site heterogeneous catalysis

Amsterdam, October 30, 2014

Elsevier, a world-leading provider of scientific, technical and medical information products and services, and the editors of the leading international journal Chemical Physics Letters are pleased to announce the winner of the  5th Ahmed Zewail Prize in Molecular Sciences. The award goes to Professor Sir John Meurig Thomas from the University of Cambridge, UK for his outstanding contributions to the fundamental understanding of the structures of solids and development and application of the concept of single-site heterogeneous catalysis.

Professor Thomas was one of the first to exploit and adapt electron microscopy as an indispensable chemical tool, of which he has since made imaginative use. His early work as a solid-state chemist was concerned with the characterization and chemical consequences of dislocations and other structural defects in molecular crystals, certain minerals and layered solids. His approach to active-site engineering recently has led to the design of numerous nanoporous single-site catalysts, where the advantages of both homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysis are unified.

Nobel Laureate Professor Ahmed Zewail, in whose name the Prize is honored, commented, "Professor Thomas has made major contributions to materials science, heterogeneous catalysis, and electron microscopy. I am immensely proud that John has been awarded this year's prize as I believe he is one of the greatest scientist and educators of our time."

Rob van Daalen, Publisher responsible for the Physical Chemistry portfolio of journals at Elsevier added, "For this year's edition of the Ahmed Zewail Prize we received almost twice as many nominations compared to previous years and it is good to see the increased interest in the prize. I am delighted that Professor Thomas has been selected as the 5th Ahmed Zewail Prize winner. I thank both the nominators and the leading scientists in the judging committee, who advised the journal editors in making their decision."

The Ahmed Zewail Prize consists of a monetary award of $20,000 and a medal. Sir John Thomas will present a review lecture at the Ahmed Zewail Prize Symposium on 24 March, to be held during the 2015 ACS Spring meeting, in Denver, USA. The invited speakers are: Ahmed Zewail, Michel Che, Mostafa El-Sayed and Thomas Maschmeyer.

The Ahmed Zewail Prize in Molecular Sciences is a biennial award sponsored by Elsevier in collaboration with the international journal Chemical Physics Letters. Named for the journal's Honorary Advisory Editor Professor Zewail, who received the 1999 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, the Prize is awarded to individual scientists who have made significant and creative contributions of a fundamental nature to any of the disciplines of molecular sciences.

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About Professor John Thomas
Professor John Thomas used a variety of photophysical and photochemical techniques to determine the nature of traps for singlet and triplet excitons and charge carriers in organic molecular solids. In the early 1980s he transformed the study, characterization and discovery of new zeolitic solid. From the mid-1990s, with his combined, simultaneous use of X-ray absorption and X-ray diffraction, coupled with GC/MS/FTIR, he achieved uniquely revealing, in situ, insights into the mode of operation of his molecularly designed heterogeneous catalysts. His approach to active-site engineering recently has led to the design of numerous nanoporous single-site catalysts, where the advantages of both homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysis are unified. Early work of his in geochemistry was recognized when a new mineral, meurigite, was named in his honor in 1995. He is a keen popularizer of scientific culture, for which, along with his services to chemistry, he was knighted in 1991.

About Chemical Physics Letters
Chemical Physics Letters is an international rapid communications journal publishing the results of frontier research in chemical physics and physical chemistry, molecular sciences, materials science and biological systems. The Editors of the Journal are currently Professors David Clary (University of Oxford, UK), Mitchio Okumura (California Institute of Technology, USA), Richard Saykally (University of California, Berkeley, USA) and Villy Sundström (Lund University, Sweden). The Editors are supported by an Advisory Editorial Board of about 100 leading scientists. For more information: www.elsevier.com/locate/cplett

About Elsevier
Elsevier is a world-leading provider of information solutions that enhance the performance of science, health, and technology professionals, empowering them to make better decisions, deliver better care, and sometimes make groundbreaking discoveries that advance the boundaries of knowledge and human progress. Elsevier provides web-based, digital solutions — among them ScienceDirect, Scopus, Research Intelligence and ClinicalKey— and publishes over 2,500 journals, including The Lancet and Cell, and more than 35,000 book titles, including a number of iconic reference works. Elsevier is part of RELX Group, a world-leading provider of information and analytics for professional and business customers across industries. www.elsevier.com

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Aileen Christensen
Elsevier
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 a.christensen@elsevier.com