Charles Goodyear Medal for Judit Puskas
Judit E. Puskas was honoured as the 2017 Charles Goodyear Medalist. This award was established by the Rubber Division of the American Chemical Society in 1941 to honour scientists and engineers who are recognised as having made an outstanding invention, innovation or development which has resulted in significant change or contribution to the nature of the rubber industry.
Puskas received the medal in recognition of her outstanding and pioneering contributions to the synthesis and characterisation of advanced elastomers for healthcare and other applications.
She received her M. E. Sc. degree in organic and biochemical engineering in 1977, and her Ph.D. in plastics and rubber technology in 1985 from the Technical University of Budapest, Hungary. She then started a career in the industry working for Lanxess (Bayer). She headed the global butyl rubber research, and produced patents for butyl technologies: bimodal butyl, one-step halobutyl, branched butyl, and a liquid carbon dioxide process.
In 1996, she entered an academic career, and continued the development of new polyisobutylene-based materials. In 2014 she was named the Joseph M. Gingo Chair in the Chemical Engineering Department at the University of Akron.
Her current research is focused on the integration of breast cancer diagnosis and treatment with breast reconstruction, green polymer chemistry, thermoplastic elastomers and polymer structure/property relationships, biomimetic processes and biomaterials, living/controlled polymerisations, and polymerisation mechanisms and kinetics. Puskas is one of the editors of Interdisciplinary Reviews in Nanomedicine and NanoBiotechnologyWIRE, and a member of the Advisory Board of the European Polymer Journal.
Puskas is a coinventor of the TPE used on the “Taxus” coronary stent by Boston Scientific, a poly(styrene-b-isobutylene-b-styrene) block copolymer (SIBS).
She was honoured with the 2009 “Chemistry of Thermoplastic Elastomers” Award of the Rubber Division of the American Chemical Society. In 2012 she was one of five winners of the GE Healthymagination Breast Cancer Challenge Award.
Puskas is the first woman to receive the Charles Goodyear Medal.