BiographyAvelino Corma

Avelino Corma Canós (Moncófar, Castellón, 1951) graduated in Chemistry at the University of Valencia and earned his PhD from the Complutense University of Madrid in 1976. After two years of studies at Queen's University, Kingston (Canada), he joined the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) as a Researcher in 1979 and as a Research Lecturer in 1987. Between 1990 and 2010, he headed the Institute of Chemical Technology, jointly dependent on the Polytechnic University of Valencia and CSIC, considered one of the centres of reference in the field of catalytic processes.

Currently, he is a Research Lecturer at this Institute. Acknowledged as an international authority in the field of heterogeneous catalysis, Corma work involves the creation of new materials made up of nanopores formed via the self-assembly of organic and inorganic molecules. He uses molecular-sized cavities and pores to generate confined spaces and active sites, which change the structure and reactivity of molecules, giving rise to catalytic processes that take place with higher selectivity.

RecognitionAvelino Corma

Author of over 100 patents, he has written three books and has published over 900 articles in international journals, ranking among the 25 most-cited chemists in the world -being the highest ranking Spanish researcher

He published a new concept in Nature -2007 Prince of Asturias Award for Communication and Humanities- for the synthesis of molecular sieves enabling the synthesis of Zeolite A, among other materials, as an additive to catalysts for the petrochemical and refining industry. Science -2007 Prince of Asturias Award for Communication and Humanities 2007- published another of his studies, on a gold nanoparticle catalyst that reduces the nitro group of a molecule without altering the other groups, which was to have applications in the fight against cancer. Holder of honorary degrees from ten universities and Foreign Member of The Royal Society of London -2011 Prince of Asturias Award for Communication and Humanities-, among other distinctions he has received the National Research Council Award (1995), the G. Ciapetta Award ( USA, 1998), the Rey Jaime I Prize (2000), the François Gault European Catalysis Award (2002), the Breck Award from the International Zeolite Association (2004), the Spanish Royal Society of Chemistry Award (2006), the Gabor A. Somorjai Award (USA, 2008), the Boudart Award in Advanced Catalysis (USA, 2009) and the ENI New Frontiers of Hydrocarbons Award (Italy, 2010).

Prince of Asturias AwardAvelino Corma

At its meeting in Oviedo, the Jury for the 2014 Prince of Asturias Award for Technical and Scientific Research, made up of Juan Luis Arsuaga Ferreras, Juan Ignacio Cirac Sasturáin, Luis Fernández-Vega Sanz, Cristina Garmendia Mendizábal, María del Rosario Heras Celemín, Bernardo Hernández González, José Manuel Leceta García, Emilio Lora-Tamayo D'ocón, José Antonio Martínez Álvarez, Amador Menéndez Velázquez, María Teresa Miras Portugal, Ginés Morata Pérez, Enrique Moreno González, César Nombela Cano, Eduardo Punset Casals, Marta Sanz-Solé, Manuel Toharia Cortés, chaired by Pedro Miguel Echenique Landiríbar and with Vicente Gotor Santamaría acting as secretary, has decided to bestow the 2014 Prince of Asturias Award for Technical and Scientific Research on the chemist Avelino Corma Canás (Spain), the chemical engineer Mark E. Davis (USA) and the physical chemist Galen D. Stucky (USA) for their contributions to the development of microporous and mesoporous materials and their applications.

The three researchers have made truly remarkable contributions to the design and methods of synthesis of these materials, the study of their properties and the development of their applications in very diverse fields. These include the petrochemical industry, biodegradable plastics and water treatment, improved food quality, new medicines and revolutionary healthcare materials, optoelectronic materials, emission reducing elements and, in short, a broad range of activities in society.

Oviedo, 28th May 2014