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The impact of precious metals chemistry in the evolution of modern societies

OLIVER BRIEL
Umicore
Member of chimica oggi/Chemistry Today’s Scientific advisory board

The “2011: International Year of Chemistry” allows meand my colleagues from the scientific advisory boardof Chimica Oggi/Chemistry Today to reflect on the influence of advances in chemistry research during thepast 109 years by looking at who was awarded with theNobel Prize in Chemistry and which socio-economic impact did the research contributions of the Laureates have.As a representative of a precious metals company I willlogically take a look at it in the perspective of preciousmetals chemistry. Just recently, in the May issue of 2011 my colleague Ian C. Lennon did a formidable job highlightingthe impact of Nobel Prize in Chemistry on fine chemicals (1).Amongst others he mentioned three recent important NobelPrizes which for sure are still in everybody’s mind: 2010 NobelPrize was jointly awarded to Richard F. Heck, Eichi Negichiand Akira Suzuki for their contributions to developing the technology of Palladium catalysed coupling reactions. 2005 prize was awarded to Yves Chauvin, Robert H. Grubbsand Richard R. Schrock for their contributions in the field ofolefin metathesis and in 2001 it was awarded to William S.Knowles, Ryoji Noyori and K. Barry Sharpless for th ...



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