ROGER SARGENT, IChemE past president and emeritus professor at Imperial College London has been awarded IChemE’s inaugural MM Sharma Medal.
The medal commemorates the distinguished Indian chemical engineer MM Sharma, and is given as a lifetime achievement award for academia.
The award recognises Sargent’s pivotal role in defining process systems engineering (PSE) in the 1950s and his subsequent championing of its development and application over the last 60 years.
“Roger is very much the founding father of the process systems discipline,” said Eva Sorensen, from University College London’s Centre for Process Systems Engineering. “He has, over several decades, spearheaded the development and application of mathematical modelling and optimisation based on system thinking – the basis of modern chemical engineering.”
Reacting to his award, Sargent said: “I have been very lucky doing what I love for over 60 years, and to see it making a difference to chemical engineering even today is hugely rewarding.”
Sargent was a prolific academic and supervised over 50 PhD students during his career, many of whom have gone on to become hugely influential academics and engineers in their own right. Today, Sargent’s academic tree runs to seven generations and has over 2,000 members.
The award was presented on 1 December at the 23rd Roger Sargent lecture. The annual event is held at Imperial College London and hosted by the Centre for Process Systems Engineering, founded by Sargent himself in 1989.
IChemE president Jonathan Seville presented the award, saying: “To many chemical engineers Roger is a role model who has left a lasting legacy. The award of this medal recognises the extraordinary impact he has had on both academic and industrial practice.”
Earlier this year Sargent received the Royal Academy of Engineering’s Frank Whittle Medal for outstanding and sustained achievement in engineering.
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