October 05, 2016 - 10:21 AM
STOCKHOLM - The Latest on the 2016 Nobel prize in chemistry (all times local):
It's been a busy day for Northwestern University scientist Fraser Stoddart, one of three winners of the 2016 Nobel Prize for chemistry.
Stoddart says Wednesday he's hasn't had time to take a shower or read the 500-600 emails he's received. He says he's also hoping he'll get away with violating university parking rules for a day.
The chemistry professor says he was shocked when he got the call about 4 a.m. and thought maybe it was a hoax. But he says he eventually relaxed and "the day has gone quiet crazy from there."
Stoddart spoke at a news conference at the suburban Chicago university. He urged continuing investment and support of science because he says research is "a long haul."
Scientist Fraser Stoddart used a news conference about his 2016 Nobel Prize in chemistry to speak out about Brexit — Britain's impending departure from the 28-nation European Union.
The Scottish-born professor at Northwestern University outside Chicago said Wednesday that the U. K. is "in a real mess because it thinks it can raise borders to people coming into it."
Stoddart says that's not good for science, because it will eliminate millions of people and their talents. He says "science is global" and said his research group includes scientists from around the world.
Britain's prime minister says the U.K. will trigger a formal clause to begin exit negotiations with the EU by the end of March. British officials have promised to provide more financial support to scientists in the U.K., since they are expected to lose millions in EU funding.
Scientist Fraser Stoddart says he thinks the Nobel Prize chemistry committee recognized "fundamental chemistry" when it honoured him, Dutch scientist Ben Feringa and French scientist Jean-Pierre Sauvage with this year's prize.
The professor spoke from his office at Northwestern University outside Chicago after winning the Nobel on Wednesday. He says his colleagues in the field are all waiting "for the killer application" of their discoveries. He says he thinks the committee's recognition of "blue sky fundamental science" should be "applauded and should be listened to."
Northwestern plans to honour the chemistry professor later Wednesday and put his picture on the front of the university's website .
Dutch scientist Ben Feringa has two reasons to celebrate.
Not only was he named a joint winner of the Nobel Prize in chemistry on Wednesday, but his youngest daughter got her bachelor's degree in movement science at the University of Groningen's medical school.
Feringa told reporters in Groningen that "unfortunately I had to skip the ceremony" where she was awarded her degree, adding "I am very proud, but I could not be present."
He vowed to his daughter "I promise I will be there when you get your master's thesis."
Speaking to French TV channel itele, Jean-Pierre Sauvage called his Nobel Prize for chemistry a memorable moment and a big surprise.
"I have won many prizes, but the Nobel Prize is something very special, it's the most prestigious prize, the one most scientists don't even dare to dream of in their wildest dreams," he said.
French President Francois Hollande congratulated Sauvage, calling the prize "a sign of recognition of the excellence of French and European research."
Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte took to Facebook to congratulate laureate Ben Feringa.
"Fantastic news," Rutte said. "All of the Netherlands is proud."
French Prime Minister Manuel Valls has congratulated Jean-Pierre Sauvage for his "avant-garde" work.
"French research has once again been celebrated with a Nobel Prize," Valls tweeted.
Sauvage was a researcher from 1973 to 2009 with France's National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) which tweeted its congratulations.
Stoddart's daughter, Alison Stoddart, is also a chemist and said she was called by her father and that he was "absolutely ecstatic, absolutely delighted."
"He was a little bit in shock, obviously early in the morning (in Chicago). He was very happy about the people he won the prize with," said Alison Stoddart, speaking with the AP by phone from Cambridge, England.
She noted that Jean-Pierre Sauvage is a close family friend and colleague in particular.
As a chemist, Alison Stoddart, said she was pleased to see the work recognized. "It's just really lovely, it's fundamental chemistry; it's synthesis in making these machines. ... What it could make in years to come is very exciting."
She described the winners as impassioned chemists
"They just make really interesting molecules and they love doing it and it's just really nice they won together," she said.
Officials at the University of Strasbourg, where Sauvage is a professor emeritus in the Institute of Science and Supramolecular Engineering, said they were overwhelmed and honoured by the news. They said Sauvage plans to speak publicly in Strasbourg later Wednesday.
Sauvage's wife, contacted by telephone, was on the verge of tears as she told people that her husband had won the prize.
Jean-Pierre Sauvage, Fraser Stoddart and Bernard Feringa have won this year's Nobel Prize in chemistry for developing molecular machines.
The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences says molecular machines "will most likely be used in the development of things such as new materials, sensors and energy storage systems."
News from © The Associated Press, 2016