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2001 Roy W. Tess Award in Coatings

The Officers and the Award Committee of the Division of Polymeric Materials: Science and Engineering (PMSE) of the American Chemical Society are pleased to announce that Frank N. Jones, Professor and Director of the National Science Foundation Industry/University Cooperative Research Center at Easter Michigan University, will receive the Roy W. Tess Award in Coatings for 2001.

Dr. Jones has contributed to all major pollution-reduction technologies in the coatings industry. His vigorous research program on high-solids coatings has been sustained for 30 years. He is particularly noted for his distinguished research in the discovery and development of polymers for low-polluting high-solids and solventless coatings. With his coworkers he has designed and synthesized innovative oligomers, and has elucidated and controlled their cross-linking reactions to form solid films. Dr. Jones has synthesized prototypical oligomers to test the influence of structure on coating properties, and has advanced the comprehension of two chemical reactions most important for cross-linking high-solids coatings: the reaction of polyols with melamine-formaldehyde (MF) and with polyisocyanate resins. His work has demonstrated that solventless liquid coatings may be commercially feasible for many industrial applications, and has shown that MF resins can be cured at unexpectedly low temperatures.

Another theme of Dr. Jones’ research has been the study of composition-structure-property relationships in coatings films and surfaces. Collaboration with Physics Professor Weidian Shen at EMU demonstrated that surface properties are often quite different from bulk properties. They developed ways to measure the viscoelastic properties of the very thin layer of material near the surface of a coating film, leading to improved understanding of mar resistance. Dr. Jones’ group has also studied cross-linkable latexes, synthesized nanoparticle (10 – 20 nm) latexes with unique properties, and used liquid crystalline (LC) polymers to enhance coating film properties.

Dr. Jones’ service to the polymer community includes holding major offices of the American Chemical Society’s PMSE Division in the mid-1990s. He now serves as Secretary of the Intersociety Polymer Education Council. He presented the Mattiello Memorial Lecture to the Federation of Societies for Coatings Technology in 1995.

Dr. Jones earned a Ph.D. in organic chemistry at Duke University and spent a postdoctoral year at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He joined the DuPont Company where he performed research in polymerization and catalysis in the Central Research Department. He then transferred to the Fabrics and Finishes Department where he participated in pioneering studies of polymeric pigment dispersion stabilizers and then supervised groups developing powder coatings and water-borne automotive topcoats. Subsequently he held management positions at Celanese and at Cargill, Inc. where he was responsible for research, development and technical support for a variety of polymers, coatings, plastics, and elastomers.

After 20 years in industry, Dr. Jones was appointed Professor and Chair of the Department of Polymers and Coatings at North Dakota State University in 1983. He moved to his present position in 1990. As an educator, Dr. Jones has mentored over 30 graduate students and about 20 postdoctoral students and visiting professors, most of whom have gone on to successful careers in industry and academia. Dr. Jones’ research with students and collaborators has led to about 130 publications and 30 U. S. patents. He also collaborated with Zeno Wicks and Peter Pappas on a successful text and reference book, “Organic Coatings: Science and Technology,” now in its second edition.

Dr. Jones will receive the Tess Award from Dr. Peggy Cebe, Chair of the PMSE Division, on Monday, August 27, 2001 during the 222nd Meeting of the American Chemical Society in Chicago, IL. Dr. Jones will present an Award Address at that time. An evening reception sponsored by the PMSE Division will follow the Award Symposium.