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June 14, 2005

Suib Joins Elite Group of Chemical Pioneers

Chemistry professor Steven Suib
Chemistry professor Steven Suib

Photo by Peter Morenus

One of the top national awards in chemistry has gone to the head of the chemistry department, Steven Suib.

Suib, a Board of Trustees Distinguished Professor and the Yuji Hayashi Distinguished Chair in Plasma Chemistry, was one of three recipients of the annual Chemical Pioneer award of the American Institute of Chemists. He received the award in Philadelphia on June 10.

Previous Chemical Pioneers include several Nobel Prize winners, including Linus C. Pauling. The award recognizes those who have made outstanding contributions with a major impact on advances in chemical science and industry.

Suib is an inorganic chemist and an international leader in the field of zeolite synthesis. Zeolites are microporous crystalline solids sometimes referred to as “molecular sieves.” Work with zeolites leads to the development of new materials that are mor environmentally friendly in, for example, the automotive industry.

Suib also is an expert in the field of plasma chemistry and collaborates with Yuji Hayashi, founder and CEO of the firm I’mPACT World, whose gift to the University last year created the Hayashi Chair, and fellowships in the chemistry department.

The technology being developed in plasma chemistry has applications in fuel cell production and in breaking down toxic chemicals and decomposing organic chemicals that pose environmental hazards.

Suib came to UConn in 1980 after earning a Ph.D. and conducting postdoctoral research at the University of Illinois. He has published more than 300 scholarly papers and holds 18 patents.