Deceased Academicians

Mario José Molina


Mexico City (Mexico), 19 March 1943 - 7 October 2020
Nomination 24 July 2000
Field Atmospheric Chemistry
Title Professor, Nobel laureate in Chemistry, 1995

Most important awards, prizes and academies
Awards: Tyler Ecology and Energy Prize (1983); UNEP-Sasakawa Prize (1999); Esselen Award (1987); Newcomb-Cleveland Prize (AAAS) (1988); Nobel Prize in Chemistry (1995). Academies: National Academy of Sciences; Institute of Medicine, USA; American Chemical Society; American Physical Society; Fellow, American Geophysical Union; National College of Mexico.

Summary of scientific research
Prof. Molina predicted in 1974 (together with F.S. Rowland) that CFC gases being used in spray cans, as refrigerants and solvents, etc., would eventually deplete the ozone layer. This laid the ground for the discovery of the 'ozone hole' over the Antarctic. Subsequent work in large measure explained the mechanism by which ozone depletion over the poles comes about.

Main publications
Author or joint author of over a hundred articles and essays, including: Molina, M.J. and Rowland, F.S., Stratospheric sink chlorofluromethanes-chlorine atom catalysed destruction of ozone, Nature, 249, p. 810 (1974); Molina, M.J., Tso, T.L., Molina, L.T. and Wang, F.C.-Y, Antarctic Stratospheric chemistry of chlorine nitrate, hydrogen chloride, and ice: release of active chlorine, Science, 238, p. 1253 (1987); Molina, M.J., Lipson, J.B., Elrod, M.J., Beiderhase, T.W. and Molina, L.T., Temperature dependance of the rate constant and branching ration for the OH+C1O reaction, J. Chem. Soc. Farady Trans., 93, p. 2665 (1997); Molina, M.J., Zhang, R. and Molina, L.T., Development of an electrostatic ion guide in chemical ionisation mass spectrometry, Rev. Sci. Instrum., 69, p. 4002 (1998); Molina, M.J., Koop, T., Ng, H.P. and Molina, L.T., A new optical technique to study aerosol phase transitions: The nucleation of ice from H2SO4 aerosols, J. Phys. Chem., 102, p. 8924 (1998); Molina, M.J., Zhang, R., Broekhuizen, R., Lei, W., Navarro, R. and Molina, L.T., Experimental Study of intermediates from OH initiated reactions of toluene, J. Am. Chem. Soc., 121, pp. 10225-6 (1999); Molina, M.J., Lipson, J.B., Beiderhase, T.W., Molina, L.T. and Olzmann, M., Production of HC1 in the OH+C1O: Laboratory measurements and statistical rate theory calculations, J. Phys. Chem., 103, p. 6540 (1999); Molina, M.J., Koop, T., Bertram, A.K. and Molina, L.T., Phase transitions in aqueous NH4HSO4 solutions, J. Phys. Chem, 103, pp. 9042-8 (1999); Molina, M.J., Lee, S.H., Leard, D.C., Zhang, R. and Molina, L.T., The HC1+C1ONO2 reaction rate on various water ice surfaces, Chem Phys. Lett., 315, pp. 7-11 (1999); Molina, M.J., Salcedo, D. and Molina, L.T., Nucleation rates of nitric acid dihydrate in 1:2 HNO3/H2O solutions at stratospheric temperatures, Geophys. Res. Lett., 27, p. 193 (2000).

Professional address

University of California, San Diego
9500 Gilman Drive
MC 0356, La Jolla, CA 92093 (USA)


Nuclear Disarmament, Non Proliferation and Development

President Nicola Cabibbo's opening address. ... Read more


Complexity in Climate Change Science (PDF) 2012

A comprehensive approach for reducing anthropogenic climate impacts including risk of abrupt climate changes (PDF) 2011

Nuclear Energy and Climate Change (PDF) 2010

Predictability of Science and Climate Change (PDF) 2006

Global Change and the Antarctic Ozone Hole (PDF) 2000

Self-presentation (PDF) 1999