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Professor Paolo Galli
is considered one of the most influential
scientists in the industry of plastic materials
and related technology.

He is one of the most successful figures in the
opening of new frontiers in the polymer
science and applications in the last 50 years.
The "Giulio Natta" Award Scientific Committee:
Prof.Dr.LudwigBohem,Prof. Dr. Rolf Mulhaupt, Prof. Dr. NicolaiPlate',
Dr. DieterFreitag, Dr. Giuliano Cecchin, Dr . Ing Ing Anton De Vries.

Prof Galli has given a unique and outstanding contribution to the development and success of polyolefin materials, especially polypropylenes, allowing these materials to find a broad field of applications, with significant improvements in our daily life, as these plastic materials are nowadays found everywhere, in a myriad of useful and unique applications. They are used in packaging, films, house ware, furniture, textiles, hygienic articles, articles for sports, toys, in medical care, but also for technical applications such as pipes, geo-membranes, automotive parts and in electric and electronic components and machinery. The innovation which led Paolo Galli and his team to such success was the realisation of the need to focus on the “Knowing why” through basic research, in order to then develop proper “Knowing how”. Following this principle, Prof Galli developed the Giulio Natta Research Center into a world class innovation center for polyolefin materials. This principle also became the fundamental guideline for such technology driven companies such as Himont, Montell and, later, Basell.
Prof Galli's main contributions to the impressive progress of the field of polyolefins field can summarised as follows:

A) Innovation and Scientific Research
Prof. Galli's personal contribution in terms of innovation is universally recognised as the basis of the beginning and development of a new revolutionary polyolefin technology and is why the "G.Natta" Research Centre holds its current prominent position in the world of technology.

Listed are some of his more important and original personal contributions:

1. The fundamental contribution is the invention of the high-yield catalysis for the polymerisation of alpha-olefins, first achieved by identifying the type, role and chemical nature of the ideal support in the creation of all new high-yield catalysts: the MgCl2 in active Delta form.

2. The scientific identification, explanation and placement of the replica phenomenologies of the catalyst introducing a true "NEW DIMENSION" to catalysis, revolutionising technology. He created the scientific basis and set up the industrial development of this fundamental technological "breakthrough", which gave the plastics industry a new push.

3. The conception and the creation of the "Ideal Catalyst" for olefins polymerisation, the fundamental basis for the development of all the new polymerisation processes of Montedison /Himont/Montell.

4. The concept of the theoretical model and the technological development of the "Reactor Granule", providing the fundamental premise and scientific basis for the technological and commercial development of processes based on "Reactor Granule Technology": Spheripol, Spherilene, Catalloy, Hivalloy and Spherizone .

5. The concept and development of new breakthrough technologies:
a) "Mixed catalysis" which permits the use of "Reactor Granule Technology" for all catalytic systems of polymerisation of the homogeneous type, no longer limited to Ziegler-Natta catalysis.
b) The innovative "Multizone Circulating Reactor" with its revolutionary impact on the concept of all the new generations of polymerisation processes and products.

6. Understanding the structural model and setting up of research on polymeric alloys, the technological and commercial development of the early polypropylene alloy-based manufactured goods in the auto industry and the production of a novel generation of Polyolefin-Based Bumpers that have revolutionised the auto-industry world-wide.
Indeed, Prof. Galli not only conceived the theoretical foundations of novel thermoplastic materials, but also successfully mastered the industrial processes required for their mass production as well as pioneered one of the most original and successful applications for these materials: car bumpers. It was due to Prof. Galli's vision of the more resilient and shock-absorbent capabilities of polypropylene over steel, and then his stubborn pursuit and promotion of that concept which ultimately persuaded FIAT to roll out the world's first ever plastic automobile bumper (the FIAT 128 model launched in 1972), a landmark in the car industry which quickly became the norm and expanded from just the bumper area of the vehicle to the whole shock-absorbing front-facing and back-facing sections of automobiles and even trucks. For further details see Appendix A - The Plastic Bumper: A Breakthrough in the Automobile Industry ."

7. The conception and research of an early generation of biodegradable materials based on the blending of polyolefins and agriculture - sourced starches, and the related manufacturing technologies to allow mass production for application primarily in the packaging industry.

B) Main Industrial Achievements
His most important contributions from a scientific-industrial and managerial point of view have mainly been in the development and the full support of all the industrial projects described hereafter. He has co-ordinated every single project, planning from the laboratory studies to the development of the processes, the products and the relative applications in the pilot phase, up to the industrial scale till the full commercialisation, for the following technologies:
  • High yield catalysts Polyethylene process at the Brindisi plant; (1st example in the world of a Polyethylene plant operating with the high yield catalysts for the production of high and medium density polyethylene).
  • Polypropylene homopolymer produced with the diluent process and high yield catalysts in the Brindisi, Feluy (B), La Porte (TX) plants; (1st example in the world).
  • Crystalline, heterophasic propylene-based copolymers with the diluent process and high yield catalysts in the Brindisi and La Porte plants; (1st example in the world).
  • Polypropylene crystalline homopolymers and heterophasic propylene-based copolymers with the novel, revolutionary hybrid liquid monomer/gas phase Spheripol process, using spherical form high yield catalysts first in the plants of Brindisi, Ferrara, Terni, Feluy (B), Bayport (TX), Lake Charles (LA), Varennes (Canada), Antwerp (B). Spheripol process has been licensed to all the most important PP world producers and covers today over 60% of the total world PP production.
  • EPM and EPDM rubbers with the slurry process on the plants in Ferrara and Orange (TX), the latter for the B. F. Goodrich company; (first example in the world of EPDM plant operating in liquid monomer).
  • High yield catalysts with high stereospecificity, on the plants in Ferrara; (1st example in the world).
  • Synthetic polyolefinic paper, called Ferlosa, in the Ferrara plant; (1st example in the world).
  • LLDPE with high yield catalysts in the high pressure process in the plant in Priolo (Syracuse).
  • PCMA (Polypropylene Composite Materials and Alloys) in the Ferrara, Brindisi, Bayreuth (D), Milton Keynes (UK), Varennes, East Brunswick (N.J.), Taiwan plants.
  • Spherilene process in Bayport and Lake Charles; (1st example in the world.)
  • Catalloy process in Ferrara, Bayport and Moerdijk (N.L.); for a complete gamut of PO alloys).
  • Hivalloy process in Lake Charles; (1st example in the world of a plant for the production in synthesis of a large gamut of PO and polar monomer alloys).
He has directed the strategy and the Patent activities issuing more than a hundred patents for the Montedison / Himont / Montell companies. Currently, thanks to the Montecatini/Himont/Montell Licensing activity, 90% of all the polypropylene production in the world is made with Montell/Basell processes or under its patent licences.