Radek Zbořil

(*1973). After receiving his PhD degree in 2000, Radek Zbořil stayed at several universities, for example, the University of Delaware or the University of Tokyo. Since 2010, he has been a Professor at Palacký University Olomouc. He was a Founding Director (2010–2020) of the Regional Centre of Advanced Technologies and Materials (RCPTM) at Palacký University Olomouc. Since 2018, he has been a guest scientist at Friedrich–Alexander University Erlangen–Nürnberg, Germany. Currently, he acts as the Scientific Director of the RCPTM division of the Czech Advanced Technology and Research Institute (CATRIN) and leads the Materials-Envi Lab at the Centre of Energy and Environmental Technologies (CEET) at VSB-Technical University Ostrava.

Between years 2012 and 2019, Prof. Zbořil also acted as the Director of the Competence Centre of the Technology Agency of the Czech Republic dealing with advanced nanotechnologies and biotechnologies for water and soil treatment (Nanobiowat). He was a member of the Board of the Technology Agency of the Czech Republic (Alfa programme) and of the Scientific Board for chemistry of the Neuron Endowment Fund. He was or still is a member of the Editorial Boards of several journals, e.g., Applied Materials Today (Elsevier), Scientific Reports (Nature family), View (Wiley).

Prof. Zbořil has received a number of prizes for his research. Among others, he was awarded by the Czech Republic’s Minister of Education for extraordinary results achieved in the field of research, experimental development and innovations (2011) or he won the Werner von Siemens Award (2018). Since 2012, he has been the Chairman of Nanocon, one of the largest conferences in the field of nanotechnologies in the Central European region. Since 2014, he has been the Chairman of the prestigious Zahradník lecture series, having hosted many world-recognized speakers. He also organized the US–Czech Conference on Advanced Nanotechnology and Chemistry under the auspices of the US Ambassador, Stephen B. King.

The scientific focus of Prof. Zbořil’s relates to the development of new low-dimensional nanomaterials including carbon quantum dots, fullerene, graphene and its derivatives, metal organic frameworks, and metal-based nanosystems, which possess exceptional magnetic, photoluminescence, plasmonic, catalytic, and energy-related (harvesting/storage) properties. His team has succeeded in applying these materials in biomedicine, water treatment, catalysis, energy, and environmental technologies, with other application strategies being developed.

Examples of his main achievements include the development of the world’s thinnest insulator based on fluorographene (Small 2010), room-temperature organic magnets based on functionalized graphene (Nature Communications 2018), and the first two-dimensional carboxylic acid named graphene acid (ACS Nano 2017). Furthermore, his team contributed to, for example, the discovery of the mechanism behind the bacterial resistance to silver nanoparticles, alongside a way to overcome it (Nature Nanotechnology 2019), the development of 1D non-metallic conductors (Nature Nanotechnology 2020), and the first iron-based heterogeneous catalyst for hydrogenation of nitriles (Nature Catalysis 2021).

Prof. Zbořil has also contributed to the development of numerous technologies that have been successfully implemented in the fields of water treatment and biotechnologies (e.g., EP 2 873 329, EP 3 585 736 and EP 2 164 656). Among others, the technology for the large-scale production of iron nanoparticles is successfully applied by NANO IRON, s.r.o., in areas of groundwater treatment in Europe, US, and Asia; or the technology for the separation of antiviral and antimicrobial lactoferrin protein from the milk medium has been licensed to companies in the Czech Republic and Poland.

He is an author and co-author of more than 660 papers and many books/book chapters published by, e.g., American Chemical Society, Wiley, or American Institute of Physics. His publications have received over 58 000 / 44 500 citations (Google Scholar/Web of Science). His H-index is 109/95 (January, 2023). Since 2018, Professor Zbořil has appeared on the list of Highly Cited Researchers, published annually by Clarivate Analytics in the USA. He is also among the Top 10 most highly cited scientists in Water Treatment, Top 20 in Energy, and Top 50 in Catalysis and Nanotechnology, according to Google Scholar.

Professor Zbořil is the Principal Investigator of many national and international grant projects, with the financial support for Palacký University Olomouc totalling more than EUR 75 million.