Professor of Inorganic Chemistry Galen D. Stucky has been named a 2013 Fellow of the American Chemical Society (ACS), making Stucky one of 96 fellows appointed by the organization annually.
The American Chemical Society, a nonprofit organization chartered by Congress, is the largest scientific society in the world and a leading source of authoritative scientific information. The society assembles major research conferences, provides educational programs in chemistry and publishes several scientific journals and databases.
For a scholar to be named a fellow, he or she must achieve outstanding accomplishments in the chemistry field. Each year, fellows are appointed in a large range of disciplines and geographic locations.
Stucky, a member of the ACS editorial board, was appointed for his research on powerful synthesis paradigms for the assembly of organic and inorganic composite and multifunctional systems using block copolymers to create highly defined and patterned domains on nano- to macro- length scales.
For many years, Stucky has studied how inorganics interact with biosystems — such as how nature makes abalone shells or how to stop arterial bleeding — and he said his research touches on the entire life spans of these interactions. “What I’ve always been interested in is how organic and inorganic species get together, starting from small molecules, and create a big functional system,” he said.
In his latest study, Stucky discovered how to create what are called mesostructured materials, saying that this area of research fulfills the needs of products that are made by major tech corporations like Intel, “The people at Intel wanted to make chips smaller and smaller, so the components had to be smaller and smaller, and they were doing this top-down approach … chemists do it the bottom-up way — the way nature does,” he said.
But he said his recent research has allowed for the expansion of international research and major tech advancements: “The methodology we developed is still being used very extensive globally. It essentially opened up an opportunity for people to create things on this sub-micron but intermediate-length scale.”
Stucky also said he will be looking into energy efficiency and how to convert light into chemicals in order to store it, as he regards this field of research as necessary for combat pressing environmental issues: “We have a greenhouse problem. You want to take the carbon dioxide and convert it into fuel like nature does.”
Faculty in the Chemistry Department acknowledged the advancements of Stucky’s research, as chemistry professor Peter Ford called his work world-renowned and greatly respected in the academic community.
“Professor Stucky is one of the truly outstanding inorganic materials chemists in the world,” chemistry professor Peter Ford said in an email. “I am very pleased to see him receive this highly deserved honor.”
Associate professor Trevor Hayton agreed, saying Professor Stucky’s recognition as a new fellow of the American Chemical Society is “very highly deserved,” as the scientist’s work will continue to help advance academic research in future generations.
“He has made many important contributions to the fields of inorganic and materials chemistry, and his influence in these areas will be felt for many years to come.”
A version of this article appeared on page 6 of the September 26, 2013 print issue.