Omar Yaghi
  • 2018 Wolf Prize in Chemistry


An expert in hydrogen storage material, the James and Neeltje Tretter Chair Professor
of Chemistry at the University of California at Berkeley. He was awarded the 2018 Wolf Prize in Chemistry “for pioneering reticular chemistry via metal-organic frameworks and covalent organic frameworks”

Education and Work Experience

1986-1990, Ph.D. in Chemistry, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
2012-Present, James and Neeltje Tretter Professor of Chemistry, University of California, Berkeley
2012-Present, Senior Faculty Scientist/Affiliate, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
2013-Present, Co-Director of Kavli Energy Nanosciences Institute, UC Berkeley
2014-Present, Co-Director of California Research Alliance by BASF, UC Berkeley

Honors and Awards

2017, Albert Einstein World Award of Science
2018, BBVA Frontiers of Knowledge Award in Basic Sciences
2018, Wolf Prize in Chemistry
2019, Member of the United States National Academy of Sciences

Major Academic Achievements

Yaghi pioneered in reticular chemistry, a new field of chemistry concerned with stitching molecular building blocks together by strong bonds to make open frameworks. His most recognizable work is in the design and production of new classes of compounds known as metal-organic frameworks (MOFs), zeolitic imidazolate frameworks (ZIFs),and covalent organic frameworks (COFs). These materials are excellent at hydrogen and methane storage, carbon capture and conversion, water harvesting from desert air, and catalysis, to mention a few. He termed this field 'Reticular Chemistry' and defines it as 'stitching molecular building blocks into extended structures by strong bonds'. Yaghi also pioneered molecular weaving, and synthesized the world’s first material woven at the atomic and molecular levels (COF-505).