J.A. Wesselingh

J. A. Wesselingh

I am an Engineer in Physics. After graduation I got a job at Shell and with time I became the head of a group of thirty researchers doing research about chemical reactors and separation processes of the oil industry. Subsequently I worked thirteen years at the technical separation processes with students and PhD’s in Delft. We also studied the development of the theory of multicomponent mass transfer. The past twelve years I was a professor in Groningen. At the moment I am trying something new: I’m trying to start up a Product Technology track at our department. Of my publications I am the most proud of my book about multicomponent mass transfer which I have written with R. Krishna of the University of Amsterdam. For this book we got the AkzoNobel price in 1997. I have also been elected “teacher of the year” a couple of times.

Hoogewerff medal
The board of the Hoogewerff-Fund foundation decided to grant the Golden Hoogewerff-Medal to prof. Ir. J.A. Wesselingh. This as an acknowledgement for Wesselinghs extraordinary contribution to the field of Chemical Engineering in the Netherlands. The honor is even greater because in average the medal is only granted once in the three years. Hans Wesselingh was born in 1937. He graduated in Applied Physics at the TU Delft in 1963. He gained his first industrial experience at the Royal Shell laboratory in Amsterdam. In 1976he went back to Delft, first as a general Chemistry lector and from 1980 as professor in Separation Processes. In 1989 he moved to Groningen as a Thermodynamics and Separation Processes professor. Wesselingh has done research on a variety of separation processes like filtration, distillation, absorption, dialysis, membrane separation and ion exchange. He also spent time on topics benefitting Separation Processes like fluidization, mixing, movement of bubbles, droplets and solid particles in liquids and countercurrent mass transfer processes.
Together with prof. Krishna in Amsterdam he performed pioneering research in multicomponent diffusion and multicomponent separation processes. With that research he put the Maxwell-Stefan approximation on the map. Wesselingh also gained the medal because he was an extraordinary teacher, who could motivate his students in a very special way. His teaching excelled  by a combination of a consistent fundamental approach with common sense and application orientation. ‘’Wesselingh had the unique ability to not only do research for technical applications, but also presenting the results on a very enthusiastic way’’, according to the foundation board. The award ceremony took place on a special closing part of the two day ‘3th Netherlands Process Technology Symposiom’ on the 29 october 2003 in Veldhoven.

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