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Shipley Lectures at Clarkson University to Honor Egon Matijevic, Oct. 20 & 21

World-renowned Scientist Michael Grätzel to Deliver 22nd Lectures

Clarkson University's 22nd Shipley Distinguished Lectureship series will be held on Oct. 20 and 21 as a tribute to the late Prof. Egon Matijevic.

Matijevic, who was Clarkson's oldest and longest serving active, full-time faculty member, passed away in July at the age of 94. He had recently been named the Victor K. LaMer Professor Emeritus for nearly six decades of exemplary service to the University.

Established by Matijevic, the lectureship has welcomed distinguished speakers from around the world for more than two decades, promoting scholarly achievements through idea exchange and active learning for Clarkson students, faculty and the wider community.

Michael GrätzelContinuing this fine tradition, this year’s Shipley lecturer is Professor of Physical Chemistry Michael Grätzel, director of the Laboratory of Photonics and Interfaces at École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) in Lausanne, Switzerland, a world-renowned scientist and one of the 10 most highly cited chemists in the world.

Grätzel, who is co-inventor of the Grätzel Cell and a leader in the advancement of solar cell development for use in renewable electricity generation, will present the two Shipley Lectures, which are both free and open to the public.

His lecture "The Magic World of Nanocrystals, from Batteries to Solar Cells" will be delivered on Thursday, October 20, at 3 p.m. in Science Center Room 360 (#18 on the map at

The presentation will be followed by a reception and campus tribute to Egon Matijevic at 4:30 p.m. reception in the Schuler Educational Resources Center (#16 on the map at

In describing his lecture, Grätzel says, in part, "Mimicking the principles that natural photosynthesis has been used successfully over the last 3.5 billion years in solar energy conversion, mesoscopic solar cells achieve the separation of light harvesting and charge carrier transport. The transparent nature of these films and the high conversion efficiency offers new opportunities for applications, such as electric power producing windows and light weight flexible cells powering portable electronic devices such as IPhones and IPads."

For students, faculty and the more technically inclined, Grätzel's lecture "The Amazing Rise of Perovskite Solar Cells" will be presented Friday, October 21, at 10 a.m. in Bertrand H. Snell Hall Room 213 (#20 on the map at

On Oct. 3, Grätzel was awarded the sixth Ahmed Zewail Prize in Molecular Sciences for his outstanding contributions to the field of energy and electron transfer reactions and their use in energy conversion.

Grätzel pioneered research in the field of energy and electron transfer reactions in mesoscopic systems and their use in energy conversion systems, in particular photovoltaic cells and photo-electrochemical devices for the splitting of water into hydrogen and oxygen and the reduction of carbon dioxide by sunlight as well as the storage of electric power in lithium ion batteries.

He discovered a new type of solar cell based on dye sensitized nanocrystalline oxide films, which successfully mimic the light reaction occurring in green leafs and algae during natural photosynthesis.

Author of several books and over 1,200 publications that received some 180,000 citations, Grätzel is one of the three most highly cited chemists in the world. His recent awards include the Paracelsus Prize of the Swiss Chemical Society, the King Feisal International Science Prize, the Samson Prime Minister’s Prize for Innovation in Alternative Fuels, the First Leigh-Ann Conn Prize in Renewable Energy, the Albert Einstein World Award of Science, the Marcel Benoist Prize, the Paul Karrer Gold Medal, the Gutenberg Research Award, the Millennium Technology Grand Prize, and the Balzan Prize.

Grätzel graduated as doctor of natural science from the Technical University of Berlin and has received 10 honorary doctorate degrees from Asian and European universities. He is a member of the Swiss Chemical Society and an elected member of the German Academy of Science (Leopoldina), as well as honorary member of the Israeli Chemical Society, the Bulgarian Academy of Science and the Société Vaudoise de Sciences Naturelles, and an honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (UK).

He is currently a distinguished visiting chair professor and honorary director of SAINT (Sungkyunkwan University Advanced Institute of Nano Technology) in Seoul Korea, a visiting professor at NTU Singapore and a Max Planck Fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Solid State Research in Stuttgart Germany.

Renowned among alumni as a maestro in the lecture hall and among his peers world-wide for his scientific virtuosity, Egon Matijevic's contributions to Clarkson are legendary. He inspired excellence in the laboratory, the classroom and in life. As a world-renowned researcher with numerous publications and patents to his name, he defied convention among his higher education peers and led the Clarkson faculty to always place students first.

The Shipley Lectures are sponsored by the Shipley Family Foundation, with support from Clarkson's Center for Advanced Materials Processing (CAMP). The lectures were initiated in 1994 by Matijevic through a generous gift from the late Lucia and Charles Shipley through the foundation.

The University's relationship with the Shipleys dates back to1970, when Matijevic was invited by the Shipley Company to successfully resolve a patent situation involving their critical catalyst in electroless plating, establishing a professional relationship with the two entrepreneurs that continued over the years.

For more than 20 years, distinguished speakers from around the world, including nine Nobel Laureates have presented talks.

The purpose of the lectures is to promote scholarly achievements at Clarkson by providing the opportunity for idea exchange and active learning, as well as allowing undergraduate and graduate students to meet the most prestigious speakers from all over the world.

For more information about the lectures, please contact Elizabeth McCarran at 315-268-6658 or

Clarkson University educates the leaders of the global economy. One in five alumni already leads as an owner, CEO, VP or equivalent senior executive of a company. With its main campus located in Potsdam, New York, and additional graduate program and research facilities in the Capital Region and Beacon, N.Y., Clarkson is a nationally recognized research university with signature areas of academic excellence and research directed toward the world's pressing issues. Through more than 50 rigorous programs of study in engineering, business, arts, education, sciences and the health professions, the entire learning-living community spans boundaries across disciplines, nations and cultures to build powers of observation, challenge the status quo and connect discovery and innovation with enterprise.

Photo caption: Michael Grätzel, director of the Laboratory of Photonics and Interfaces at École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) in Lausanne, Switzerland, will present the two lectures of Clarkson University's 22nd Shipley Distinguished Lectureship on Oct. 20 and 21.

[A photograph for media use is available at]

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Annie Harrison, Director of Media Relations, at 315-268-6764 or]

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