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Celebrating the distinguished career of Dr Martin Seah MBE

An inspirational scientist who pioneered metrology for surface chemical analysis

Dr Martin Seah, MBE and Emeritus Senior NPL Fellow, passed away earlier this year. Professor Ian Gilmore, Head of Science at NPL, pays tribute to one of the greatest metrologists of our time and celebrates his many scientific achievements. Watch it here.

Dr Seah joined NPL in 1969 and in his career spanning half a century he pioneered metrology for surface chemical analysis establishing international standards and the global equivalence of measurements; a truly inspirational scientist.

Dr Seah published over 350 scientific papers as well as editing, with David Briggs, the well-known ‘Practical Surface Analysis’ volumes. In 2002, a special issue of the journal Surface Interface Analysis celebrated his 60th birthday.

He made major contributions to the scientific community and in recognition he was awarded the 1978 Henry Marion Howe Medal of the American Society for Metals, the 1989 Albert Nerken Award of the American Vacuum Society, the 1995 British Vacuum Council Medal and Prize, the 1996 Institute of Physics Duddell Medal and Prize, and the 2004 International Union for Vacuum Science, Technique and Applications Prize in Technology. In 2018 he was also awarded an MBE for services to science and industry.

During Dr Seah’s extraordinary career he left a huge impact on the scientific community with major developments in his field as well as on colleagues who worked along side him. In the words of Professor Ian Gilmore, “Martin made the light shine far and wide. A light that will not go out.”

Watch Professor Gilmore’s full tribute here.

09 Dec 2021