Umberto Colombo (scientist)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Umberto Colombo
Born 1927
Died 13 May 2006 (aged 78)
Nationality Italian
Citizenship Italy
Alma mater University of Pavia
Awards Conrad Schlumberger Award (1958)
Honda award for ecotechnology (1984)
Scientific career
Fields Chemical Engineering
Physical Chemistry
Institutions University of Milan

Umberto Colombo (1927 – 13 May 2006) was a Jewish-Italian chemical engineer, academic and the minister of universities, science and technology of Italy.

Early life and education[edit]

Colombo was born in 1927.[1] He held a PhD in physical chemistry, which he received from the University of Pavia.[1][2] He was a Fulbright Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the United States.[2]


Colombo was a chemical engineer.[3] He was working as a professor at the University of Milan in the 1970s.[4] He served as the president of the Italian energy firm ENI for a short period from November 1982 to January 1983.[5] Then he was appointed as the head of the Italian nuclear energy unit.[6]

He served as the minister of universities, science and technology in the Ciampi cabinet from 1993 to 1994.[7][8] Then he became a member of the Italian national council of economy and labour.[3] He was also the chairman of LEAD-Europe.[9] He was one of the shareholders of Energy Conversion Devices, Inc. Then he became a member of its board of directors in July 1995 and retired in November 2004.[10] Other posts he assumed included the chairman of ENEA (Italian national agency for new technology, energy and the environment; 1983-1993),[1] president of the European science foundation (1991-1993),[1] chairman of the Italian hydrocarbons trust, director general of Montedision's R&D and strategic planning, director of Montecatini's G. Donegani research centre, governor of the international development research centre (IDRC; 1985-1990) in Canada,[7] chairman of the United Nations's advisory committee on science and technology for development (1984-1986)[7] and president of the European institute research management association.[2][10] He was also a member of the Club of Rome's executive committee that had been founded by Aurelio Peccei.[11]


Colombo and another Italian scientist Francesco Scaramuzzi carried out an experiment on nuclear fusion in April 1989.[12] They reported that their experiment was successful in creating nuclear fusion at room temperature with a novice technique.[12]


Colombo was the recipient of the Honda Foundation's award for ecotechnology in 1984.[1][13] He was also awarded China's state international scientific and technological cooperation award in 1999.[14]


Colombo died in Rome on 13 May 2006.[10] He was 78.[10]


  1. ^ a b c d e Colombo, U.; D. Siniscalco. "Environmental economics and sustainable development" (PDF). Dimensions of Sustainable Development. II. Retrieved 25 April 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c "Umberto Colombo Profile Page". Lead. Retrieved 25 April 2013. 
  3. ^ a b "Bose's microwave transmitter". Frontline. 15 (6). 21 March – 3 April 1998. Retrieved 25 April 2013. 
  4. ^ Hart, Jeffrey (15 February 1977). "No good news, please". Lewiston Evening Journal. Retrieved 25 April 2013. 
  5. ^ Cuando el mercado se estremece: el reto directivo de la reestructuración de la industria. Harvard Business Press. 1986. p. 155. ISBN 978-0-87584-136-6. Retrieved 25 April 2013. 
  6. ^ "Energy Chief In Italy Quits". The New York Times. Rome. Reuters. 26 January 1983. Retrieved 25 April 2013. 
  7. ^ a b c "ECD names a new board member". PR News. 26 June 1995. Retrieved 25 April 2013. 
  8. ^ Segre, Dan V. (17 January 2010). "The Roles of the Jews in Italian Society". Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (53). Retrieved 25 April 2013. 
  9. ^ Sereni, Valentina (September–October 1998). "No Simple Recipe". Galileo. Retrieved 25 April 2013. 
  10. ^ a b c d "Umberto Colombo, Former ECD Director, Dies in Rome, Italy". PR News. 24 May 2006. Retrieved 25 April 2013. 
  11. ^ "Declaration of the Club of Rome". The Club of Rome. Retrieved 31 May 2013. 
  12. ^ a b "Italian gets nuclear fusion with new technique". Lawrence Journal. Rome. AP. 19 April 1989. Retrieved 25 April 2013. 
  13. ^ "Past Laureates, 1980". Honda Foundation. Retrieved 18 July 2013. 
  14. ^ "China Confers State Award to Brazilian Expert". People's Daily. 28 June 2000. Retrieved 18 July 2013.