Professor Malcolm H Levitt
Professor of Physical Chemistry
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Prof Malcolm Levitt joined the School of Chemistry at the University of Southampton in 2000, as Professor in Physical Chemistry. His main research area is Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR), in which he has won several international prizes and has written a well-received textbook.
“Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) is well known in the form of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), where it is used routinely for medical scanning. But NMR is a much wider field than MRI, and is still under intensive development. I particularly like NMR as a research field since it combines deep principles of quantum mechanics with numerous real-world applications, including chemistry, biochemistry, physics, and medicine.”
Malcolm Levitt grew up in Hull and obtained his PhD from Oxford University in 1981, under the supervision of Professor Ray Freeman. He performed postdoctoral research with Shimon Vega in Israel and Richard Ernst at the ETH in Zürich (who received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1991). He was then on the research staff at the Francis Bitter Magnet Laboratory at MIT, Boston, USA, for 4 years. He moved back to England as a Royal Society Research Fellow at the Centre for Superconductivity in Cambridge, before becoming a lecturer at the University of Stockholm, Sweden, where he was made a full professor in 1997. He moved back to England to take up a Professorship in Physical Chemistry at Southampton in April 2001. He is currently Head of Magnetic Resonance at the School of Chemistry, University of Southampton.
Malcolm was elected Fellow of the Royal Society in 2007. He won the LATSIS research prize of the ETH-Zürich in 1985, the Göran Gustafsson prize in Chemistry in 1996, the Ampère prize from the International Society of Magnetic Resonance in 2005, the Günther Laukien prize in Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy in 2008, and the Russell Varian prize in Nuclear Magnetic Resonance in 2015. He is on the editorial boards of several journals, including the Journal of Magnetic Resonance and the Journal of Chemical Physics. He published Spin Dynamics, a textbook on Nuclear Magnetic Resonance, in 2001. The second Edition was published in 2007.
Apart from science, he composes music, plays jazz, paints and sketches, and is interested in art, languages and politics.