Dr. Abraham Clearfield, distinguished professor of chemistry at Texas A&M University, has received the American Chemical Society (ACS) Northeast Region Award for Achievements in the Chemical Sciences for his career excellence in contributions to chemical research and knowledge.

Clearfield, an international pioneer in solid state inorganic chemistry and many areas of structural chemistry, is the inaugural recipient of the award, which celebrates "the extraordinary achievements of a chemistry professional as evidenced by his or her contributions to the body of chemical knowledge."

A member of the Texas A&M faculty since 1976, Clearfield is considered one of the foremost researchers in the field of layered phosphonates -- a field he founded. His studies on synthesis and structure of layered ion exchangers have broadened many areas of chemistry related to coordination compounds, layered compounds phosphonic acids and phosphonates, crystallography, porous materials and, most recently, nuclear waste and radionuclides.

Clearfield accepted the award this past summer as part of a symposium held in his honor where all invited speakers universally lauded his work as being seminal to their individual research.

"Abe Clearfield has made many contributions to society through his research in the areas of fundamental studies of X-ray crystallography and the applications of this technique to studies of coordination chemistry, layered phosphonates and porous materials," said Dr. David H. Russell, professor and head of the Department of Chemistry. "This basic and applied research has directly impacted key national issues in the area of nuclear waste. Parallel with his many research contributions, Professor Clearfield is also widely recognized for his abilities as a teacher and mentor to several generations of students, undergraduate and graduate students as well as post-doctoral students and researchers."

A past president of the American Crystallographic Association, Clearfield has been an editorial board member of numerous professional journals. In addition, he has published more than 540 papers in peer reviewed journals, has edited three books and holds 15 patents. His many honors include Sigma Xi Distinguished Scientist, the ACS Southwest Section Award in Research, an honorary Ph.D. (Honoris Causa) from the University of Oviedo, Spain and a Texas A&M Association of Former Students Distinguished Achievement Award in Research.

Clearfield received both his bachelor's (1948) and master's (1951) degrees in chemistry from Temple University as well as a Ph.D. from Rutgers University. He was honored by Temple in 2007 as a distinguished alumnus in the College of Science and Technology.


Contact: Shana K. Hutchins, (979) 862-1237 or shutchins@science.tamu.edu

Hutchins Shana

  • Dr. Abraham Clearfield

    Photograph by Jim Lyle, TTI Communications.

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