Michael M. Abbot Award Lectures

The Michael M. Abbott Lecture Series hosted each spring in the Chemical Engineering Department honors Abbott’s legacy and celebrates his achievements.

Michael Abbott received his B.S. in Chemical Engineering in 1961, and his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering in 1965, both from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He worked for four years at Exxon Research and Engineering. He joined Rensselaer as a postdoctoral fellow in 1969, and joined the Chemical Engineering Department as an Associate Professor in 1974, where he worked till 2006. He was promoted to Full Professor in 1986, and appointed Emeritus Professor in 2002. For 11 years prior to retirement, he served as Associate Chairman of Chemical Engineering.

Prof. Abbott was an internationally recognized expert in chemical thermodynamics. He co-authored four textbooks, including the best-selling chemical engineering text of all time, Introduction to Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics, currently in its seventh edition. Abbott had a passion for teaching, and received many awards in recognition of his work as a teacher and mentor, including the Tau Beta Pi Outstanding Engineering Instructor Award (1976), the Trustees’ Outstanding Teacher Award, the Western Electric Fund Award from ASEE (1979), the Rensselaer Distinguished Teaching Fellowship (1986-88), and the first Rensselaer Alumni Association Teaching Award in 1994.

Beyond academics, Abbott had wide ranging interests including literature, poetry, and music.

The Michael M. Abbott Lecture Series hosted each spring in the Chemical Engineering Department honors Abbott’s legacy and celebrates his achievements.

Abbott Lecture Awardees

2016 Gregory Stephanopoulos, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

2015 Jay D. Keasling, University of California, Berkeley

2014 John F. Brady, California Institute of Technology

2013 Curtis W. Frank, Stanford University

2012 K. Dane Wittrup, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

2011 Frank S. Bates, University of Minnesota

2010 George “Bud” Homsy, University of British Columbia

2009 Michael F. Doherty, University of California, Santa Barbara

2008 Pablo Debenedetti, Princeton University

2007 Jefferson W. Tester, Massachusetts Institute of Technology