150 Years of the Periodic Table

Periodic Table image year 1869

Perspectives in Chemistry: 150 Years of the Periodic Table

Recorded: Wednesday, November 20, 2019 | 9:00 am - 5:15 pm
National Academy of Sciences Building, Washington, DC

This ACS/NSF colloquium was held on Wednesday, November 20 at the National Academy of Sciences in Washington, DC. The event was generously supported by a grant (CHE-1937824) from the National Science Foundation. To celebrate the International Year of the Periodic Table of Chemical Elements, prominent scientists shared their perspectives on the history of the periodic table, discoveries that have shaped society, current trends in chemistry research, and opportunities that will impact the future. Presentations were followed by a panel discussion.


History and Discovery of the Periodic Table

The colloquium began with a discussion of Dmitri Mendeleev and the history of the periodic table, and its continuing development.   

What Made Mendeleev Unique?

David Lewis, University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire

Modern-Day Alchemy

Jacklyn Gates, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory


The Periodic Table and Today’s Challenges

Speakers discussed the role of the periodic table in creating green and sustainable chemistry processes and its role in today's energy storage and synthesis.

Addressing Sustainability Challenges with Chemistry & Emerging Technology in Industry Research

Jeannette Garcia, IBM

Harnessing the Versatility of the Periodic Table for Energy storage

Amy Prieto, Colorado State University

Sustainable Polymers
in a Circular Materials

Eugene Chen, Colorado State University

Making molecules

Malika Jeffries-El, Boston University


The Periodic Table and Tomorrow's Discoveries

Speakers in this segment of the colloquium discussed the future of throughput experimentation and automation, quantum computing and chemical engineering.

Synthesis for All

Martin Burke, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

The Promise of Quantum Computing for Chemistry

Ryan Babbush, Google

Industrial/Academic Collaborations to Power Discoveries in Chemistry

Gary Molander, University of Pennsylvania

What is Chemical Engineering in the 21st Century?

Eric Kaler, University of Minnesota


Panel Discussion

The colloquium speakers answered questions from the audience and discussed challenges to diversifying the chemistry enterprise.

Learn more about how ACS has celebrated IYPT at www.acs.org/iypt

Learn more about how The National Science Foundation supports chemistry at www.nsf.gov/chem