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BASF Catalysis Award 2011 presented for contributions to catalytic processes in organic synthesis

July 22/2011

(BASF) -- Professor Tobias Ritter of Harvard University receives BASF Catalysis Award 2011
International experts from academia and industry guesting at “Heidelberg Forum of Molecular Catalysis”.

For his outstanding research contributions to catalytic processes in organic synthesis, Professor Dr. Tobias Ritter of Harvard University in Cambridge (USA) is receiving the BASF Catalysis Award 2011. The prize, worth EUR 10.000, will be presented today by Dr. Friedrich Seitz, Head of BASF’s Technology Platform Chemicals Research & Engineering, at the “Heidelberg Forum of Molecular Catalysis”, a symposium of international experts organized jointly by Heidelberg University, Collaborative Research Center 623 “Molecular Catalysts” and BASF SE.

With his research group centered at Harvard University, Professor Ritter is working in the field of synthetic organic and organometallic chemistry and, specifically, on the synthesis of complex molecules. Mechanistic studies are ongoing to develop practical access to molecules of interest in catalysis, medicine and for new materials.

The prizewinner and his research team are currently focusing on fluorination chemistry of complex compounds under mild reaction conditions. This is because organic fluorine compounds, compared to compounds of other halogens, are difficult to synthesize in a controlled manner. However, these substances are of major interest: medical professionals use them for imaging techniques such as positron emission tomography (PET).

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