Giovanni Serravalle

Professor emeritus of Politecnico di Milano


  • Year of nomination: 2003
  • Facility: Department of Chemistry, Materials and Chemical Engineering “Giulio Natta”

"After graduating in Industrial Engineering, Chemistry subsection at the Politecnico di Milano in 1955, Professor Serravalle attended the School of Physical Chemistry, Electrochemistry and Metallurgy the same Politecnico as a scholarship holder and subsequently as an ordinary Research Assistant from 1958, Assistant Professor from 1961 and Full Professor of Metallurgical Chemistry from 1962, also teaching Electrometallurgy for a few years. He was also in charge of the Wet Corrosion and Dry Corrosion course in the Specialising Course at the University of Ferrara from 1967 to 1979. In 1968 he became Full Professor of Electrochemistry and then Full Professor in the Department of Engineering at the University of Palermo, also teaching Physical Chemistry. From 1977 he led the courses Electrochemistry and Electrochemical Technologies, then called Applied Electrochemistry, at the Politecnico di Milano. Since 1983 he has been coordinator of the PhD in Electrochemical Engineering based at the Politecnico di Milano, in partnership with the Universities of Ferrara and Palermo. He was a member of the committee for the establishment of the Department of Engineering in Florence in 1971; director of the School of Chemical Engineering the University of Palermo from 1971 to 1977; of the School of Physical Chemistry, Electrochemistry and Metallurgy at the Politecnico di Milano, and of the Department of Applied Physical Chemistry, from 1979 to 1987; Deputy Vice Rector of the Politecnico in 1983-1984; President of the CCL Chemical Engineering in 1983-1984. In 1986 he was awarded the gold medal for Merit in Education, Culture and Art by the President of the Republic. Professor Serravalle retired on 1 November 2022.

The scientific activity of Professor Serravalle concerned the electrochemistry of metals, and in particular the kinetics of electrode processes in an aqueous environment and in molten salts, with particular focus on transport procedures and concentration polarization. He achieved very important results in the study of alloys obtained by diffusion between electroplated metal and substrate of another metal, and, in recent years, in the study of the kinetics of oscillating reactions and of the electrochemical etching of aluminium strips for electrolytic capacitors. In these and other areas he published about 80 papers in international and national journals of physical chemistry. His activity also covered the industrial applications of large metallurgical plants, which he helped to build."

[extract from the 2003 nomination statement]