The 2020 IUPAC-ThalesNano prize for Flow Chemistry has been awarded to Professor Timothy Noël of the University of Amsterdam’s Van ‘t Hoff Institute for Molecular Sciences. The prize, consisting of an award of $ 7500, honours outstanding contributions in the field of flow chemistry, microfluidics, micro fabrication, and micro systems engineering.
The coveted prize was established by the Hungarian Technology company ThalesNano to acknowledge the key role that flow chemistry plays towards the improvement of chemical processes. It is awarded by an international jury under the auspices of IUPAC, the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry.
In 2020, the jury has chosen Professor Timothy Noël as the winner out of a list of highly respectable scientists, nominated and recommended by leading scientists of the field. The jury comprised the chair of the IUPAC Committee on Chemistry and Industry (COCI), a representative of the Flow Chemistry Society, and three more international experts.
“Less than a decade ago, my team and I have challenged ourselves to expand the synthetic options for organic chemists by embracing flow chemistry as the prime technology,” says Noël. “I’m very honoured by this tremendous recognition from the community for the research we are so passionate about. I want to thank all the people I worked with through the year. I want them to see this award as their award as well.”
Professor Timothy Noël is one of the leaders in the field of flow chemistry and, in the last decade, he has produced creative scientific contributions at the interface of chemistry and chemical engineering, pioneering novel continuous-flow catalytic strategies and technologies for organic synthesis. These tools have found a vivid implementation in the pharmaceutical industry, overcoming synthetic challenges often encountered at the bench in a variety of applications. In 2011 Noël received the Incentive Award for Young Researchers from the Comité de Gestion du Bulletin des Sociétés Chimiques Belges and he was a finalist of the European Young Chemist Award in 2012. In that year he was also awarded a VENI scholarship from the Dutch Science Foundation NWO. In 2015, he obtained the prestigious VIDI award from NWO. In 2016 Noël received the Thieme Chemistry Journal Award, in 2017 the DECHEMA award and in 2019 the Hoogewerff Jongerenprijs. He is the editor in chief of the Journal of Flow Chemistry since 2019.
The prize was to be presented to Timothy Noël during the 2021 Flow Chemistry Congress Conference scheduled to take place in Boston (USA) in April but recently postponed because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Updated details of the award ceremony will be announced later.
Previous awardees of the bi-annual prize were Prof. Oliver Kappe (University of Graz, Austria) in 2018, Prof. Volker Hessel (Eindhoven University of Technology; currently University of Adelaide, AU) in 2016, Prof. Steven V. Ley (University of Cambridge, UK) in 2014 and Prof. Klavs F. Jensen (MIT, USA) in 2012.
Website of the Noël research group: www.noelresearchgroup.com
Timothy Noël joined the University of Amsterdam in 2020 as Full Professor of Flow Chemistry at the Van ‘t Hoff Institute for Molecular Sciences. His research interests are flow chemistry, homogeneous catalysis and organic synthesis. The Belgian-born chemist obtained his PhD from Ghent University in 2009 at the Laboratory for Organic and Bioorganic Synthesis. Next, he crossed the ocean to work at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) as a Fulbright Postdoctoral Fellow on the development of new continuous-flow methods for cross-coupling chemistry. In 2012 he moved to Eindhoven University of Technology to become an assistant professor. He was promoted to associate professor in 2017.