Kenneth S. Suslick

Marvin T. Schmidt Research Professor of Chemistry

Ken Suslick received his B.S. from the California Institute of Technology in 1974, his Ph.D. from Stanford University in 1978, and came to the University of Illinois immediately thereafter. He has published more than 400 papers, edited four books, and holds 48 patents and patent applications.

The Suslick Research Group at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign is multi-disciplinary: our research projects involve individuals with interests not only in inorganic, but also in organometallic, bio-organic, materials (both inorganic and biomaterials), surface, analytical and physical chemistry.

Our three major research areas are the chemical effects of ultrasound (which includes nano-materials synthesis and sonoluminescence), the mechanochemistry of inorganic solids (including shock wave energy dissipation by MOFs, i.e., metal-organic framework solids) and chemical sensing (specifically, our optoelectronic nose, i.e., colorimetric sensor arrays for the detection of VOCs). The latter project in artificial olfaction and molecular recognition is an exciting spinoff of our earlier work on the bioinorganic and materials chemistry of metalloporphyrins.

In addition to his academic research, Professor Suslick has had significant entrepreneurial experience. He was the lead consultant for Molecular Biosystems Inc. and part of the team that commercialized the first echo contrast agent for medical sonography, Albunex™, which became Optison™ by GE Healthcare. In addition, he was the founding consultant for VivoRx Pharmaceuticals and co-inventor of one of the first FDA-approved nanopharmacueticals, Abraxane™ (serum albumin microspheres with a paclitaxel core), which is the predominant current delivery system for taxol chemotherapy for breast cancer; VivoRx became Abraxis Bioscience, which was acquired by Celgene for $2.9 billion. Most recently, Suslick invented, developed, and commercialized the "optoelectronic nose", a simple but highly effective technology for the identification and quantification of gas analytes. This has found important applications in the detection of toxic gases and explosives, the discrimination among complex odorants, and rapid diagnosis of disease based on their smell. This unique sensor technology is licensed to companies that Suslick co-founded: iSense Systems and Specific Technologies (both in Silicon Valley).

To all Suslick Group alumni and associates:
     The Suslick Group Celebration on Aug. 12-13, 2016, was spectacular, with nearly 80 people returning to campus.
     Thank you all so very much, and kudos to Sara Skrabalak for all her efforts!
     Click here for the symposium program in pdf format.
     Click here for the Suslick Group Photo Album (192 pages and >600 photos).
     Click here for Ken's presentation, "Time Flies Like a Banana".

Selected Awards and Honors:

  • Fellow, National Academy of Inventors.
  • George Eastman Professor, University of Oxford, 2018-2019.
  • Helmholtz-Rayleigh Interdisciplinary Silver Medal, Acoustical Society of America.
  • Chemical Pioneer Award, American Institute of Chemists.
  • Centenary Prize, Royal Society of Chemistry.
  • Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship.
  • Dreyfus Foundation Senior Scientist Mentor Award.
  • Sir George Stokes Medal, Royal Society of Chemistry.
  • ACS Senior Cope Scholar Award.
  • ACS Nobel Laureate Signature Award for Graduate Education.
  • Materials Research Society Medal.
  • Acoustical Society of America Mentorship Award.
  • Wolfgang Göpel Award, Intl. Soc. on Olfaction & Electronic Noses.
  • NIH Research Career Development Award.
  • Sloan Foundation Research Fellowship.
  • Silver Medal of the Royal Society for Arts, Manufactures, and Commerce.
  • Innovation Transfer Award, Economic Development Corporation.

  • Fellow, AAAS.
  • Fellow, American Chemical Society.
  • Fellow, Royal Society of Chemistry.
  • Fellow, American Physical Society.
  • Fellow, Acoustical Society of America.
  • Fellow, Materials Research Society.

  • Harold S. Johnston Lectureship in Physical Chemistry, University of California, Berkeley.
  • Wilsmore Fellow, University of Melbourne.
  • Crano Memorial Lectureship, ACS Akron Section.
  • J.T. Donald Lectureship, McGill University, Montreal.
  • W. Heinlen Hall Lectureship, Bowling Green State University.
  • University of Melbourne Special Public Lectureship.
  • Robert A. Welch Foundation Lectureship.
  • 3ème Cycle Lectureship, Switzerland.
  • Charles William Murtiashaw III Lectureship, University of South Carolina, Columbia.
  • Five College Lecturer (Amherst, Mount Holyoke, Smith, Hampshire and U. Mass. Amherst).
  • Cherry Emerson Lecturer, Georgia Institute of Technology.

Publication Summary:  

  •    >403 scientific papers, 4 books edited, and 49 patents and patents pending.
  •    h-index = 114 (i.e., 114 publications each with 114 or more citations);   >109 avg. citations/publication.
  •    Total citations:   >49,700.   i10-index = 326 (# papers with >10 citations).    Google Scholar, 10 July 2018.

          For a complete list of publications and patents, with links to pdf files, please click here.

          For a list of the 50 most cited publications and patents, with links to pdf files, please click here.

          For Google Scholar's current list of Suslick's publications and patents, with citations, please click here.

          For a .RIS format (importable) database of Suslick Group publications, please click here.

Selected Papers and Introductory Reviews (by topic):

Reviews of Sonochemistry, Sonoluminescence, Cavitation, and Nanomaterials:

Reviews of Mechanochemistry:

Reviews of Chemical Sensing and Bioinorganic Chemistry:

Sonoluminescence and Cavitation:

The Sonochemistry of Inorganic Materials:

Mechanochemistry and Shockwave Energy Dissipation:

The Sonochemistry of Biomaterials:

Chemical Sensing, Sensor Arrays, and the Optoelectronic Nose:

Metalloporphyrins and Bio-Inorganic Chemistry



Overview Current Group
Full CV Chymistes:
The Distillers
of Waters
Research Group
Group Meetings Complete Publications
with PDFs
A Chemist
Meets Hollywood
Executive Summary:
Group Responsibilities
A Chemist
In Court
Seminar on Seminars:
How To Give
A Talk
Words of
Humor and
Introduction to
Expert Witness
& Consulting
Laws of
the Universe
Cover Art
Cartoons of
Humor and
for Visitors
Photo Galleries
of CLS


Kenneth S. Suslick
Dept. of Chemistry
University of Illinois
  at Urbana-Champaign
600 S. Mathews Av.
Urbana, IL 61801

Office: (217) 333-2794
Fax:    (217) 244-3186





Nature Cover 2002

Science Cover 1990

Science Cover 1991

MRS Cover 1995

Supramolecular Chemistry 1998

The Journal of Physical Chemistry 2006