Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2016 goes to EU-funded researchers developing world’s smallest machines and participation of Swiss Empa
The Swedish Academy awarded Jean-Pierre Sauvage, Sir J. Fraser Stoddart and Bernard L. Feringa, the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for 2016 for the design of the world’s smallest – molecular – machines. All three laureates have participated in EU-funded research projects, and Bernard L. Feringa is also a recipient of two prestigious European Research Council (ERC) grants.
Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, said: “I warmly congratulate Jean-Pierre Sauvage, Sir J. Fraser Stoddart and Bernard L. Feringa on their achievement. They have taken chemistry into a new dimension, and this outstanding work is an excellent example of cutting-edge European science. I am proud to see that EU support has enabled them to push the frontiers of human knowledge and ultimately benefit the society and economy.” Frenchman Jean-Pierre Sauvage, Scotland’s Sir J. Fraser Stoddart and Dutchman Bernard L. Feringa received the award for their design and development of molecular machines that could one day be used to fight cancer or to produce innovative types of materials and energy storage devices. Practical examples of their research include a tiny lift, artificial muscles, miniscule motors and even a four-wheel drive nanocar. The Nobel Prize is awarded annually in a wide range of categories to honour academic, economic, cultural and scientific advancements.
Also Swiss Empa (Materials and Sciences) praises particularly Bernard L. Feringa and his collaboration with Empa researcher Prof Dr Karl-Heinz Ernst (Molecular Surface Science) who let drive a nanocar – consisting only of one molecule – in his raster resolution microscope.