Russian-Armenian nuclear physicist, Professor Yuri Oganessian has been awarded the first UNESCO-Russia Mendeleev International Prize in the Basic Sciences. The decision was made on the recommendation of an eminent international jury chaired by Professor Jean-Pierre Sauvage, winner of the 2016 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.
Born in Rostov-on-Don, Oganessian spent his childhood in Yerevan, where his family relocated in 1939. His father, Tsolak, a thermal engineer, was invited to work on the synthetic rubber plant in Yerevan.
Professor Oganessian’s work played a leading role in the synthesis and study of new chemical elements of the periodic table. He has driven major developments in international scientific cooperation that led, inter alia, to the discovery of superheavy elements like the one with atomic number 118 named after him as Oganesson.
The laureate received the Prize at a ceremony at UNESCO Headquarters, Paris on 15 November, during the 41st session of the Organization’s General Conference.