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Published on 31.03.14

Professor Nicolosi receives PIYRA award

Professor Nicolosi

On March 28th, President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins, received three recipients of the Science Foundation Ireland, President of Ireland Young Researcher Award (PIYRA) at Áras an Uachtaráin. Professor Valeria Nicolosi from AMBER, based in the CRANN Institute, and Trinity College Dublin’s Schools of Physics and Chemistry; Dr. Matthew Campbell of the Smurfit Institute and Professor Carel le Roux of University College Dublin were presented with the prestigious accolade which acknowledges cutting-edge research in fields considered critical to Ireland’s economic and social prosperity.

The President said, “This award recognises the ongoing contribution of Irish scientists to internationally respected research activity in areas of fundamental relevance to society and the economy. The work being carried out by Dr. Campbell, Professor le Roux and Professor Nicolosi is indicative of the ground-breaking research now being undertaken in Ireland. I am delighted to receive them at Áras an Uachtaráin today. It is the dedication and pioneering results of these researchers which continues to position Ireland as a leader in scientific research.”

PIYRA is Science Foundation Ireland’s most esteemed award for researchers who have shown exceptional promise as possible future leaders in international research and are known for excellence in their fields. Awardees are selected on the basis of exceptional accomplishments in science and engineering and on the basis of creative research projects that have attracted international acclaim.

Commenting on the awards, Professor Mark Ferguson, Director General of Science Foundation Ireland and Chief Scientific Adviser to the Government of Ireland, said: “PIYRA recognises outstanding researchers who, early in their careers, have already demonstrated or shown exceptional potential for leadership in their fields of research. Through this programme SFI is supporting a new generation of top-tier scientific researchers in Ireland.”

Professor Nicolosi is internationally regarded as a leading expert in the field of nano and materials science where she specialises in 2D nanomaterials and high-end microscopy. She has received the PIYRA award for research into materials that can potentially form the basis for innovative new technologies.

Professor Nicolosi said: “Receiving this award is a great honour and the significant impact that I hope this research activity will have for nanoscience generally is a very exciting prospect. The PIYRA awards afford us the opportunity to make new discoveries, patents, impactful new science that can be used to leverage non-exchequer funding from industry and Europe.”

Dr. Campbell was recognised for his research into eye conditions including age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and a range of other neurological disorders. Professor le Roux has established a research group investigating why some people become obese and why only a smaller group of them develop obesity related diseases.

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