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Shortlist announced for the Anders Gustaf Ekeberg Tantalum Prize 2018

The annual international science prize for outstanding publications concerning the element tantalum (Ta).

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM , June 26, 2018 / -- The shortlist for the 2018 Anders Gustaf Ekeberg Tantalum Prize (‘Prize’) has been announced. The Prize is awarded annually for outstanding contribution to the advancement of the knowledge and understanding of the element tantalum (Ta).

Announcing the 2018 shortlist, the Director of the T.I.C., Roland Chavasse, said that the long-term future of the tantalum market will depend on technology-driven innovations and the Prize will encourage research and development. “Winners of the Anders Gustaf Ekeberg Tantalum Prize will be acknowledged as true leaders in this field”, he added.

The award is administered by the Tantalum-Niobium International Study Center (T.I.C.), the global trade body representing the tantalum and niobium industry.

The six publications on the shortlist show the great versatility of tantalum. Two describe improved catalysts, while the others cover surgical implants, solid state memory devices, and a new refining process for tantalum ore. The sixth publication is the first comprehensive treatise on the science, manufacture and applications of tantalum capacitors.

The winner will be chosen by the independent panel of experts and the Prize medal, made from pure tantalum metal, will be awarded at the T.I.C.’s 59th General Assembly in Kigali, Rwanda, in October 2018.

Full details of the shortlist, including links to the publications, are available at


Tantalum plays an essential role in many applications, from mobile phones and computers, to satellites and jet engines. The element tantalum (Ta) is a critical raw material consumed in cutting edge technologies including high-tech electronics, superalloys and medical implants. Tantalum capacitors provide unparalleled reliability and can operate even in the most challenging conditions.


Born in 1767, Anders Gustaf Ekeberg was a Swedish scientist, mathematician, and poet. He became a professor at Uppsala University in 1794 and initially made his name by developing advanced analytical techniques and by proposing Swedish names for the common chemical elements according to the principles set out by the "father of modern chemistry" Antoine-Laurent de Lavoisier. Ekeberg discovered the oxide of tantalum in 1802, isolating it from samples of two different minerals, specifically, tantalite from Kimito, Finland and yttrotantalite from Ytterby, Sweden. According to Ekeberg’s friend, the chemist Jacob Berzelius, Ekeberg chose the name ’tantalum’ partly to reflect the difficulties that he had experienced in reacting the new element with common acids and partly out of his passion for ancient Greek literature. Tantalus was a demi-god who killed and cooked his son, Pelops, and as punishment was condemned to stand in a pool of water beneath a fruit tree with low branches, with the fruit ever eluding his grasp, and the water always receding before he could take a drink. Ekeberg suffered from poor health in later years and in February 1813 he died, unmarried, at the age of 46.


• An international, non-profit association founded in 1974 under Belgian law.
• Around 90 member companies from over 25 countries involved with all aspects of the tantalum and niobium industry supply chain (including mining, trading, processing, recycling, metal fabrication, capacitor manufacturing, medical…).
• The Association is run by its Executive Committee. This Committee reflects the range of activities of the members and covers the geographic spread of the membership, too. Presidents have been drawn from all sectors of the industry and from many parts of the world. Elections are held annually.

• Increase awareness and promote the remarkable properties of tantalum and niobium in all their forms.
• To disseminate information on any matter affecting that industry, excluding price and related information and any other proprietary information.
• Address major issues and challenges facing its industry such as conflict minerals legislation, artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM), and the transport of naturally occurring radioactive materials (NORM).
• Organize a General Assembly of the membership in

Roland Chavasse
Tantalum-Niobium International Study Center (T.I.C.)
+32 2 649 51 58
email us here

Distribution channels: Science

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