Journal Archive

Johnson Matthey Technol. Rev., 2021, 65, (4), 595
doi: 10.1595/205651321X16311902578200

Johnson Matthey Launches New Platinum Group Metal Award Scheme

Johnson Matthey is keen to encourage research into future applications of platinum group metals (pgms). As a global leader in sustainable technologies, our focus is on clean air, clean energy, healthcare and the efficient use of the planet’s natural resources – and on the fundamental properties of pgms on which these applications depend.

Johnson Matthey’s commitment to progress in platinum group metals technology is demonstrated by the launch of the new JM Platinum Group Metal Award Scheme in September 2021. This Scheme is a way for Johnson Matthey to give away pgm materials and salts to leading researchers engaged in inspiring science in sustainable technology areas. Each quarter, we will make a free gift of 5–10 g of a pgm material to the 10 to 15 applications to the Scheme that have the greatest potential to:

  • Develop new markets for pgms

  • Address current global challenges using pgm technology

  • Substitute pgms into technologies where they can improve sustainability and performance

  • Fill in gaps in our understanding of how pgms behave

  • Further decrease the hazards of using sensitising pgm materials.

Regular readers of this journal may remember the original Johnson Matthey Metals Loans Scheme (1) which donated pgm salts to researchers for more than half a century (1955–2014). Sir Geoffrey Wilkinson used materials from the Johnson Matthey Loans Scheme for virtually all of his pgm research, which featured in around 200 of his 557 publications (2). The pgms from the Scheme contributed to the successful development of new, commercially successful technologies for catalysis, cancer treatment and pollution control among many others. Around 5000 journal publications feature pgm given by Johnson Matthey via the old Scheme.

Although the name has changed from Loan to Award Scheme, the best features of the scheme remain, including sending the end-of-life research samples back to one of Johnson Matthey’s UK centres to be collected for recycling. As the largest global refiner of secondary pgm materials, we have the processing capability in our Brimsdown and Royston facilities to upgrade the metal to 99.995% purity. Scheme metal will join the other pgms going round the endless recycling loop.

How to Apply

To apply for an award of pgm, visit the Johnson Matthey corporate website and search for “pgm award” or visit the link (3). Alongside a list of which pgm materials are available there is a link to a short form asking for some details of the applicant and the project. The JM Platinum Group Metal Award Scheme is open for application from any university or research institution globally, in any field where pgms have a crucial role.


  1. 1.
    D. T. Thompson, Platinum Metals Rev., 1987, 31, (4), 171 LINK
  2. 2.
    W. P. Griffith, Platinum Metals Rev., 2007, 51, (3), 150 LINK
  3. 3.
    JM Platinum Group Metal Award Scheme: (Accessed on 10th September 2021) LINK
  4. 4.
    “Securing Technology-Critical Metals for Britain”, University of Birmingham, UK, 2021 LINK

Supplementary Information

Johnson Matthey Platinum Group Metal Award Scheme, Johnson Matthey Plc LINK

The Author

Emma Schofield is a Johnson Matthey Research Fellow based in the global Technology Centre near London, UK. She joined Johnson Matthey in 2004, enthusiastic about using inorganic chemistry to make the world a cleaner and healthier place in a company dedicated to creating the sustainable technologies of the future. As Recycling and Separation Technologies Research Manager, Emma focussed on understanding and improving the environmental impact of the industrial processes by which pgms and lithium ion battery metals are recycled. She was a Commissioner and contributor to the 2021 report “Securing Technology-Critical Metals for Britain” (4). She became a Johnson Matthey Research Fellow in January 2021, with the remit to promote the understanding and application of pgms in sustainable technologies globally.

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