Anselme Payen Award

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The Anselme Payen Award is an annual prize named in honor for the distinguished French scientist who discovered cellulose, and pioneered in the chemistry of both cellulose and lignin. In 1838,[1] he discovered that treating successively wood with nitric acid and an alkaline solution yielded a major insoluble residue that he called "cellulose", while dissolved incrustants were later called "lignin" by Frank Schulze.[2] He was the first to attempt separation of wood into its component parts. After treating different woods with nitric acid he obtained a fibrous substance common to all which he also found in cotton and other plants. His analysis revealed the chemical formula of the substance to be C6H10O5. He reported the discovery and the first results of this classic work in 1838 in Comptes Rendus. The name "cellulose" was coined and introduced into the scientific literature next year, in 1839.[3]

Anselme Payen Award Recipients
The Anselme Payen Award, which includes a bronze medal and an honorarium of $3,000, is given by the American Chemical Society's Cellulose and Renewable Materials Division, to honor and encourage "outstanding professional contributions to the science and chemical technology of cellulose and its allied products".[4]
The Anselme Payen Award is an international award and any scientist conducting cellulose and cellulose related research is eligible for nomination. Selection of the awardee is based upon an evaluation of the nomination packages submitted on behalf of potential awardees. These documents are individually ranked by a panel of nine judges who are appointed by the current Chair-Elect and are unknown to each other. Three judges rotate off the panel each year. The identity of all members is known only to the Chair of the awards committee who compiles the results. After the awardee accepts, the Chair of the Awards Committee announces the winner at the next Spring ACS meeting. The awardee for that year is honored at the following Spring ACS meeting at a Symposium and Banquet. The award bears the year the winner was announced. It is presented the following year to allow time for organization of the Symposium and Banquet.[5]


Source: Cellulose and Renewable Materials Division of the American Chemical Society

Year Awardee Institution
1962 Louis Elsberg Wise The Institute of Paper Chemistry
1963 Clifford Burroughs Purves McGill University
1964 Harold Morton Spurlin Hercules
1965 Carl Johan Malm Eastman Kodak
1966 Wayne A. Sisson American Viscose
1967 Roy L. Whistler Purdue University
1968 Alfred J. Stamm USDA Forest Products Lab
1969 Stanley G. Mason McGill University
1970 Wilson A. Reeves USDA, ARS, Southern Regional Research Center
1971 Tore E. Timell SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry
1972 Conrad Schuerch SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry
1973 D. A. I. Goring McGill University
1974 Vivian Thomas Stannett North Carolina State University
1975 J. K. N. Jones Queens University
1976 Robert H. Marchessault University of Montreal
1977 W. Kyle Ward, Jr. The Institute of Paper Chemistry
1978 W. Howard Rapson University of Toronto
1979 Kyosti V. Sarkanen University of Washington
1980 Olof Samuelson Chalmers University of Technology
1981 Stanley P. Rowland USDA, ARS, Southern Regional Research Center
1982 Erich Adler Chalmers University of Technology
1983 Reginald D. Preston Leeds University
1984 Jett C. Arthur, Jr. USDA, ARS, Southern Regional Research Center
1985 Orlando A. Battista The O. A. Battista Research Institute
1986 R. Malcolm Brown, Jr. The University of Texas at Austin
1987 Takayoshi Higuchi Kyoto University
1988 Bengt Ranby Royal Institute of Technology
1989 Anatole Sarko SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry
1990 Junzo Nakano University of Tokyo
1991 Henri Chanzy CERMAV, Grenoble
1992 Josef Geier Royal Institute of Technology
1993 Derek Gray Paprican, McGill University
1994 Geoffrey N. Richards University of Montana
1995 Josef Gratzl North Carolina State University
1996 S. Haig Zeronian University of California, Davis
1997 Joseph L. McCarthy University of Washington
1998 Rajai H. Atalla USDA Forest Products Laboratory
1999 John Blackwell Case Western Reserve University
2000 Wolfgang G. Glasser Virginia Tech
2001 Liisa Viikari VTT Biotechnology
2002 R. St. John Manley McGill University
2003 Deborah P. Delmer The Rockefeller Foundation
2004 Dieter Klemm Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena
2005 Peter Zugenmaier Clausthal University of Technology
2006 Charles Buchanan Eastman Chemical Company
2007 Fumitaka Horii Kyoto University
2008 Fumiaki Nakatsubo Kyoto University
2009 Alfred D. French USDA, ARS, Southern Regional Research Center
2010 J. Thomas Heinze Friedrich Schiller University of Jena
2011 Zhang Lina Wuhan University
2012 Hans-Peter Fink Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Polymer Research
2013 John Ralph University of Wisconsin-Madison
2014 Thomas Rosenau University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna
2015 Akira Isogai University of Tokyo
2016 Kevin Edgar Virginia Tech


  1. ^ Payen A., Memoire sur la composition du tissu propre des plantes et du ligneux, Comptes Rendus, 7: 1052-1056, (1838).
  2. ^ Schulze F., Beitrage zur Kenntniss des Lignins, Chemisches Zentralblatt, 21:321-325 (1857).
  3. ^ Payen A., Composition de la matière ligneuse, Comptes Rendus, 8: 51-53, (1839).
  4. ^
  5. ^