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Cornell's Freed honored by Journal of Physical Chemistry special issue

ITHACA, N.Y. -- The American Chemical Society has paid tribute to the scientific accomplishments of Jack H. Freed, professor of chemistry and chemical biology at Cornell University, by dedicating the July 8 issue of The Journal of Physical Chemistry B to the internationally respected scientist.

The issue is titled the "Jack H. Freed Festschrift." The German term (literally, "feast writing") is commonly used to celebrate a senior scholar's birthday with a special edition of original papers on topics relevant to the honoree's research. The volume celebrates Freed's 65th birthday and relates to his groundbreaking contributions to electron spin resonance (ESR) spectroscopy, a state-of-the-art technology for studying the molecular properties of fluids and of biological materials, including the structure and complex dynamics of membranes and proteins.

In a lengthy forward to the papers, Naresh Dalal, chairman of the chemistry department at Florida State University and guest editor for the special volume, notes that Freed has been "at the forefront of essentially every area of ESR spectroscopy" over the past 40 years. "The many articles here [in the journal] relate in more than one way to Jack's pioneering contributions to theory, instrumentation and practice of ESR since the early 1960s when he first burst upon the ESR scene. . . . His first articles led to what is now known as the Freed-Fraenkel theory of ESR linewidths," writes Dalal.

Since 2001, when the National Institutes of Health provided funding of nearly $6 million, Freed has been director of Cornell's National Biomedical Center for Advanced ESR Technology (ACERT). Both at ACERT and in his research going back decades, Freed has become internationally recognized for developing techniques for the study of molecular properties of fluids and of biosystems, including the structure and complex dynamics of proteins and membranes. Many contemporary applications of ESR would not be possible without the theoretical and simulation methods developed by Freed and his research group. He is also recognized for his development of new magnetic resonance methods and theory, time-domain electron spin resonance methods for the study of molecular dynamics in liquids, applications of ESR to surface science and the discovery, with Cornell physics colleague David M. Lee, of nuclear spin waves in spin-polarized hydrogen atoms.

"I am grateful to the editorial board of The Journal of Physical Chemistry for this great honor and especially to the many colleagues from all over the world who contributed their excellent research articles on many topics of considerable interest to me. It is a great pleasure for me to receive this recognition from my colleagues and former collaborators," says Freed.

The author or co-author of more than 300 scientific papers, Freed joined the Cornell faculty in 1963 after obtaining his Ph.D. at Columbia University in 1962 and his bachelor's degree from Yale University in 1958. He is a fellow of the American Physical Society (APS) and of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He has been an Alfred P. Sloan Foundation fellow and a John Simon Guggenheim fellow. He has served on the editorial boards of The Journal of Physical Chemistry, The Journal of Chemical Physics and of Chemical Physics Letters .

Freed has received a number of awards, including the APS Irving Langmuir Prize in Chemical Physics, the American Chemical Society's Buck-Whitney Award, the Bruker Award of the British Chemical Society, the Gold Medal Award of the International Electron Spin Resonance Society and the International Zavoisky prize.

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