On February 27, 2021, Dr. Peter KOMADEL, a long-term member of the Slovak National Clay Group and its President, passed away at the age of 65. 

He was born in Bratislava, where he also completed all his studies. He received MSc. (in 1980) and PhD. degree (in 1984) from the Faculty of Natural Sciences Comenius University, Bratislava, Czechoslovakia. From 1982 to 2018 he was employed at the Institute of Inorganic Chemistry of the Slovak Academy of Sciences (IIC SAS). In 1998, was awarded the Doctor of Science (DrSc.) by the Institute of Inorganic Chemistry (IIC), Slovak Academy of Sciences (SAS), Bratislava. Dr. Komadel, was a principal investigator of several national and international scientific projects. In the years 1993-2018 he served as the Head of the Department of Hydrosilicates and in 2000–2009 as Deputy Director of the Institute. He worked for many years in the Scientific Board of IIC SAS functioning as Head of Scientific Board in 2002–2014. He was also member of the Scientific Board at the Faculty of Natural Sciences Comenius University in Bratislava. He was a long-term President of the Slovak National Clay Group and a member of the prestigious scientific society Learned Society of Slovakia.

Dr. Komadel was a prominent, internationally recognized scientist in clay science, especially smectites, with a focus on their characterization and chemical modifications. As a fellow, he completed several stays abroad at top scientific institutions in USA, France, Great Britain, and Australia. Probably, the most significant could be considered a stay at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign in the USA, where he collaborated with prof. J. W. Stucki on the research of iron reduction in smectite layers. Dr. Komadel is a co-author of the first work describing the reduction of Fe(III) in clay minerals by microorganisms. Changes in the oxidation state of Fe in smectites are of great importance for chemical processes in soils and in environmental protection, e.g. for the permeability of landfill insulation.

He received many national awards, such as the Premium for scientific response in the category of technical science and geosciences in the period 2000-2008, conferred by the Slovak Literary Fundation, the Honorary Plaque of Dionýz Štúr for Achievements in Natural Sciences (2005) and the Award of Slovak Academy of Sciences for support of science (2015). The international recognition of Dr. Komadel work was reflected in the several awards, such as the award from The Mineralogical Society of Great Britain and Ireland (2001) and the award from The Clay Minerals Society, USA (2003). He was a member of the most important international organizations focused on the research of clays and clay minerals. In 2012–2013 he became the President of The Clay Minerals Society (USA), in 2011–2015 the President of the European Clay Groups Association and he was a member of the AIPEA council in 2001-2005 and 2005-2009. He was also a member of the editorial boards of the world's three most important magazines on clays and clay minerals.

As a widely recognized scientist, he received invitations to various international scientific events around the world. He participated in the organization of the workshops for students and conferences. In 1999, he was one of the co-founders of a series of clay conferences, the Mid-European Clay Conference, organized by the individual national clay groups from the Central European region. He was also the chairman of the organizing committee of the first in a row, which took place in 2001 in Slovakia in his favorite High Tatras region. He developed a close relationship with this conference series and did not miss a single one until his health allowed it. Together with his colleagues, Peter significantly contributed to the popularization of the Slovak "clay" science all over the world.

Dr. Komadel was not only an excellent and distinguished scientist, but also a friendly person willing to help anyone who turned to him. He did not discriminated between a young scientist and a "scientific star", whether they were colleagues from the East or the West. Proof of this is the large number of friends within the clay scientific community. He loved meetings with them and discussion of various topics at the international conferences. Occasionally, discussions spread over the whole night, but he was always ready to give a lecture in the morning, or to tentatively listen colleagues' lectures. He will always remain in our memory.