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Prof Suresh Pillai  - Boyle Higgins Gold Medal Award 2019

The award is for outstanding and internationally recognised scientists for their research work carried out in chemical sciences by Institute of Chemistry Ireland.

Suresh C. Pillai obtained his PhD in Nanotechnology from Trinity College Dublin and then performed his postdoctoral research at California Institute of Technology (Caltech), USA. Upon completion of this appointment he returned to Trinity College Dublin as a Research Fellow before joining CREST-DIT as a Senior Scientist in April 2004.

 He joined IT Sligo in 2013 as a senior lecturer in Nanotechnology and currently leads the Nanotechnology and Bio-Engineering Research Group. He is an elected fellow of the UK’s Royal Microscopical Society (FRMS) and the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (FIMMM). He has also completed an executive MBA from Dublin City University, in 2009. Suresh was responsible for acquiring more than €4 million direct R&D funding.

He has published several scientific articles in leading peer reviewed journals has contributed to several book chapters, has presented in more than forty international conferences, and has delivered over forty international invited talks. Suresh has also been invited to deliver keynote/plenary speeches at various international conferences including the IWA Symposium on Environmental Nanotechnology in Nanjing, China (2013), the International Green technology conference, India (2013) and the European Photocatalysis conference in Slovenia (2013).

He is the lead inventor in two granted US patents (awarded in 2013 and 2015) and one UK patent (awarded in 2015). He was also one of the three co-founders of DIT start-up company Radical Coatings. His research work was featured in the investigators programme (RTE TV), BBC London, BBC world Radio, the Times UK, RTE-1 TV, Aljazeera TV, Ocean FM radio and in several national and international news media. Suresh is a recipient of the Industrial Technologies Award 2011 for licensing functional coatings to Irish companies. He was also the recipient of the 'Hothouse Commercialisation Award 2009' from the Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation and the recipient of the 'Enterprise Ireland Research Commercialization Award' 2009'. He has also been nominated for the 'One to Watch' award 2009 for commercialising R&D work (Enterprise Ireland).

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One of the nanomaterials based environmental technologies developed by his research team was selected to demonstrate as one of the fifty innovative technologies (selected after screening over 450 nominations from EU) at the first Innovation Convention organised by the European Commission on 5-6th December 2011. He is the national delegate and technical expert for ISO standardization committee and European standardization (CEN) committee on photocatalytic materials. He is an editor for the journal Environmental Science and Pollution Research (ESPR, Springer) and Editorial Board Member for the Chemical Engineering Journal and Applied Catalysis B (Elsevier).

His publications list can be viewed at

Contact Details: Suresh C. Pillai, PhD, MBA, FRMS, FIMMM Centre for Precision Engineering,

Materials and Manufacturing Research & Nanotechnology Research Group,

Department of Environmental Science,

Institute of Technology Sligo, Ash Lane, Sligo, Ireland