Acad. Detchko Pavlov passed away

on 25 August 2017

delivered by Prof. Evelina Slavcheva, Director of IEES- BAS and Chairman of the General Assembly of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences at the funeral service held at 12:00 noon on August 29, 2017 at St. Sophia church

Bereaved family,
Bereaved colleagues and friends, 

Today, we are all sad because we have to bid farewell to an honorable Bulgarian, a great scientist, a wise, noble-minded and loved Man- "our" academician Detchko Pavlov!
As a sign of reverence, respect and deep gratitude for everything built by him, let us, in this moment of grief, remember some of the key markers in his rich and dynamic personal and professional life. Born on 9th of September 1930 in the village of Shipka;

In 1957, graduated the Higher Institute of Chemical Technology in Sofia and was appointed at the position of Assistant Professor at this Institute immediately after his graduation. It was there that he met his wife Svetla Raicheva and they shared the joys of life and their love to the electrochemical science. Today, on her birthday, they will meet again at a better place;

In 1961, joined the research team of the Institute of Physical Chemistry at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, whose members were the founders of the Bulgarian electrochemical school;

In 1967, played an important role in the establishment of the Central Laboratory of Electrochemical Power Sources (CLEPS), currently Institute of Electrochemistry and Energy Systems (IEES), as one of the co-founders and Deputy Director of this Institute for many years;

Created the Department of Lead-Acid Batteries, having gained world-wide fame and prestige, and was its Head for over 45 years;

Organized and managed the Materials Science Laboratory of IEES, equipped with unique for that time scientific tools and instruments, and maintained and upgraded the laboratory equipment in times of hardship for our Institute;
"Father" of the LABAT conference an international conference for science in the field of lead-acid batteries (unlike many other events with more commercial orientation), which has become an institution with its 30-decade history. Prof. Pavlov could not attend the last 10th anniversary edition of LABAT held in June of this year, but his name was heard throughout the conference venue and LABAT 2017 delegates sent him their sincerest wishes for fast recovery collected in a special get-well wishes book;
Recently, the prestigious scientific publishing house Elsevier issued the second edition of his book Lead-Acid Batteries: Science and Technology, his "swan song", translated in Chinese language, too, and studied at many Universities world-wide.
He is worshipped in India and the specialty Chemistry and technology of lead-acid batteries is studied based on a lecture course presented by Acad. Pavlov in India, collected and published by SAEST, Karaikudi; An outstanding Bulgarian electrochemist, professor and scientist of global recognition, to whom people came personally from Europe, USA, Japan, India, Iran, Israel, China and many more countries, with requests to help them solve various problems related to lead-acid batteries;
Full Member (Academician) of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences since 1997;
Honoured with numerous national and international awards: Marin Drinov Medal, National Dimitrov Award, Cyril and Methodius Medal, Gaston Plante Medal, Pitagor Award, the prestigious Life-Time Achievements Award of USA s National Association of Advanced Transport Batteries, Life-Time Achievements Award of India Lead Zinc Development Association and of the Battery Society of India;
Mentor of several generations of electrochemists, he has left behind him numerous young and talented disciples; always thoughtful and guiding. He called his colleagues my "family" and was a real father-offering support to everybody in hard moments; 
And more and more. 

An emblematic KIND personality, of incredible erudition, talent and life dedicated to science has left us. Rest in peace, dear DETCHKO! You will always be with us! DEEP REVERENCE TO YOUR MEMORY!



Dr. Alistair Davidson, International Lead Association (ILA), UK: I'm so sorry to hear the news. He was such an amazing man. Please send my condolences to his colleagues and family.

Dr. Rosalind Batson, Clear Science Inc., USA: We've lost a great scientist and a great man.

Jian-Xin Wang, Zibo Torch Energy Co., Ltd., China: We are so shocked to hear of this bad news! Professor Pavlov is so respected and high reputation. Although we have just met him once, his attitude towards work and life impressed us so much! We feel so sad and sorry about this

Dr. Tim Ellis, RSR Technologies Inc., USA: Sadly we have lost a great asset for our industry he will be missed.

Dr. Pat Moseley, Advanced Lead Acid Battery Consortium ALABC, UK: Detchko was a great man who led his strong team in the scientific study of lead-acid batteries without the financial advantages of his contemporaries in other parts of the world. Always a kind and thoughtful person, he will be sorely missed.

Norbert Maleschitz, Exide Technologies, France: Very sad news - a great Scientist and outstanding individual - we will miss him.

Dr. James Symanski, Johnson Controls Inc., USA: I am very saddened by the news. I had the privilege of meeting Detchko during my first week of work at JCI in 1984. He was a warm and kind individual and was a very important part of my learning that first week and throughout our interactions since. He loved what he did and shared with all. We will miss him but we all will carry a part of him in our hearts and minds.

Antonio Ferreira, Acumuladores Moura, Brazil: I am so sorry to hear about our great loss. I first met Detchko and all the CLEPS team in the mid nineties and he had a profound influence on me. He had the vision and the will power to keep his group together and doing terrific work on very difficult circumstances. His knowledge and personality were the characteristics of a great man. He shall be missed!

Kurtis Kelley, Firefly Energy Inc., USA: Sorry to hear that. But it is good to remember his shining smile and sparkling eyes.

Dr. Eberhard Meissner, retired from Johnson Controls Power Solutions EMEA, Germany: The battery community is indepted to Detchko for his incredible variety of contributions to gain insight into the lead/acid system. For decades, we enjoyed his education, his presentations and scientific papers, textbooks and especially the series of LABAT conferences. I owe very much to him, and I am very sorry. 

George Zguris, Hollingsworth & Vose Company, USA: He was a great teacher and always worried about his people, wellbeing.

Prof. Dr. Dirk-Uwe Sauer, ISEA-RWTH, Aachen, Germany: I am very sad about this news. The work and the spirit of Detchko will stay alive after his unprecedented scientific career through his papers but even more through all the scientists he trained, supported and inspired. My prayers will be with him.

Prof. Dr. David Rand, CSIRO, Australia: I still recall my first meeting with Detchko. It was in 1980 and he was on sabbatical leave at Flinders University in Adelaide. We were attending the EVE-80 Conference and Electric Vehicle Exposition organized by the South Australian Energy Council. We were in a car park on top of one of the university buildings where a number of EVs were on display. Detchko was invited to drive an Enfield 8000 ( Without hesitation, he jumped into the car and zig-zagged around the other vehicles in a cavalier, but alarming, display of steering and then hurtled down the ramp to the street, several storeys below. I believe he was rescued sometime later after the battery had become exhausted. Many years later on the occasion of LABAT 1, he picked me up from the airport in Sofia in his Trabant his style of driving had not changed!
Over the years, I experienced many other "incidents" and adventures with him in various countries. Please allow me to mention just one more. Detchko was being somewhat neglected by Flinders University, so we invited him to visit us at CSIRO in Melbourne. At the end of the first day, he suddenly produced two bottles of champagne and some bags of nuts. He announced that it was his 50th birthday and would like us to celebrate with him. 
I would like to think that the lead-acid battery community can find some way to celebrate the entire life and work of Detchko. He was a true gentleman and a dedicated scientist. Along with many others around world, Gwen and I will miss, but not forget, him. Requiescat in pace, Academician Dechko Pavlov.

Dr. Geoffrey May, Focus Battery Consulting, UK: He will be remembered and missed by the whole industry.

Ken & Kathryn Bullock, USA: We are very sad to hear of Professor Pavlov's passing. He was a good friend for many years, and a mentor to Kathryn. We extend our deepest condolences.

Dr. Herbert Giess, Pyramid Vision Consulting, France: We have lost with Detchko a pillar of our industry and I hope that we are able to carry on his quest for the better understanding and better operation of the Lead Acid Battery.

Dr. Rainer Wagner, Akkumulatorenfabrik MOLL, Germany: This is a tremendous loss for our lead battery community. I remember well when I met Detchko the first time in the eighties of the last century discussing with him about positive active material and curing. I was deeply impressed about his huge knowledge. The same happened later, whenever I met him again or when I was reading one of his numerous scientific papers. I learnt so much from him about lead batteries. He was a great Person, an outstanding Scientist and a very honorable Man. I will never forget him. He lived with and for lead batteries. In honor of Detchko and in memory of his brilliant work for our industry we should continue working intensively on the lead battery technology. I think this is something he would like to see very much.

Dr. Jun Furukawa, The Furukawa Battery Co., Ltd., Japan: I am deeply shocked to hear of the death of prof. Pavlov and I would like to offer my deepest sympathy. He was really great person. I'm really very sad.

Dr. David Prengaman, Chairman, RSR Technologies Inc., USA: I have been blessed to have several people over the years aid me in my career and my love affair with lead acid batteries. Detchko Pavlov was one of them. While I had heard of Pavlov, it was not until the beginnings of ALABC that I met him. He had a way of explaining his theories of active material to me in the simple examples that even me a materials person could understand them. One could only say "of course that is true". I remember many discussions with him and my wonder of his understanding of the subtle nuances of charge and discharge reactions. He was extremely proud of his team at CLEPS and fiercely protective of them as his children as he had none of his own. With the change from communism, he was forced to get support from outside the state to support his research. Given the opportunity but little in funds to travel, he managed to travel extensively to conferences and battery companies throughout the world always trying to obtain project funding for his laboratory. I was always pleased when funding could be approved.
He loved many things in life: his beloved wife, his cottage in the mountains, his colleagues at CLEPS, teaching people how to build better batteries, and lead acid batteries. I will miss him very much, the battery industry will miss him, his friends throughout the world will miss him, but most of all lead acid batteries will miss him.
It is a very sad news, indeed, we will all miss Detchko very much. It is heartwarming to see your responses and shared memories. Throughout his life Detchko was an example of someone connecting people and sharing ideas, learning and building together, and seems his spirit still is and will be connecting us. 

Dr. Paolina Atanassova, Cabot Corpoarion, USA: There were many moments I will continue to cherish: of him telling stories about how he started to work on establishing lead acid battery industry in Bulgaria, of securing funding for the Institute so he can keep his team together, and many more. But there is one memory which is particularly special - it was on April 29, 2011. When I arrived at the Institute's conference room and we were about to start going through power point presentations, data, results, Detchko smiled and asked if the Wi-Fi TV connection is good so we can watch the wedding. It was Prince William and Kate"s wedding day - and he was excited as a kid, telling us-"It is a love story and a fairy tale, and once in a life time opportunity to see something so beautiful on a large screen TV! Polarization curves can wait". "Detchko" means "Kid" in Bulgarian and he had this kid"s quality curiosity and excitement about everything he did, in science and life.

Gordon Beckley, Hammond Group Inc., USA: It is a sad day for the industry and those he touched over the years. The stories shared are magnificent and tells of his love of research and his love of people. So, I too have a story to share. I will never forget hosting him and Geno at Trojan Battery about eight years ago. After the meetings, I asked Detchko if there was anything he wanted to see before departing the LA area and he smiled with a sparkle in his eyes and said "yes, I want to dip my toes in the Pacific Ocean." So off we went to Newport Beach as he took off his shoes and socks to feel the Pacific Ocean. Detchko loved the simpler and more important things in life. He will be truly missed.

Dr. Lan Lam, CSIRO, Australia: I am very sad to hear that Prof. Pavlov has passed away. We all agree that we just lost a great, respective and humble Scientist. As his beloved students, I am sure that you, Paulina and Papazov are deeply sad at this moment. 

John Devitt, USA: Needless to say, I am very saddened to learn of this news about Detchko. Before his lovely and so-accomplished chemist Svetla left him, Jeane and I had the privilege of spending a superb evening with them in their apartment in Sofia for dinner and conversation. Unforgettable. Jeane had become much acquainted with Svetla some years ago as Jeane accompanied me to several LABAT occasions every 3 years. So, as I was occupied with the LABAT details and people at the meeting Svetla was simply wonderful at helping Jeane to be occupied with other things. A really "great lady" in every way.
Now Detchko has left his battery people, and, I suspect, left unsaid more of his continuing insight into many inner workings of the many reactions which accompany this wonderful electrochemical system. I suspect my work on the successful O2 cycle may have cemented my relationship with Pavlov, but in any event, I always knew that he would communicate any time. Irreplaceable, obviously.

Mr. Song Bin, Chairman of Sacred Sun Batteries in China, and his colleagues: We were heard that our highly esteemed professor Mr. Detchko Pavlov passed away on last Friday, it was very sad news for all Sacred Sun people. Our chairman Mr. Song Bin recalled the memorable time when he visited Mr. Pavlov in 1997, and also the book of "Lead Acid Batteries: Science and Technology ", which was really lifelong benefits. Mr. Song and the management, on behalf of all Sacred Sun people, expressing our deep condolences and memoriam to the Pioneer of VRLA battery industry in the world.

Dr. Manfred Gelbke, Akkumulatorenfabrik MOLL, Germany: We have lost a great scientist, someone who gave our industry so much over decades! More than that! We have to say good bye to good friend, teacher and colleague, to a very kind human. I will light a candle for him at our basilica Vierzehnheiligen tomorrow and remember!

Dr. David Wilson, International Lead Association (ILA), UK: He was a delight to know and a true gentleman, and like everyone else I will always have fond memories of him. Although I was never a battery scientist or an electrochemist, I found his explanations and visualisations of theories to be entirely comprehensible and I know I learned as much about lead-acid batteries from him as from anyone else. We were always keen to include him in our conference programmes and he never disappointed us-the time and effort he must have devoted to preparing and delivering presentations in a language that most certainly wasn"t his first was hugely commendable. We will all miss him.

Dr. Eckhard Karden, Ford Forschunggszentrum Aachen GmbH, Germany: Indeed this is very sad news. We lost a great teacher, a highly dedicated and committed researcher, a brilliant mind, and a noble friend. We will keep our memories of him, and often ask ourselves how he would have tackled a scientific or technical problem in front of ourselves.

Ken Peters, industry consultant, UK: I am very saddened to hear the news. I knew he was having surgery but expected his full recovery. I first met him 30+ years ago in London. We were at a concert with friends. He was a great lover of music and whenever we met we enjoyably reminisced. Always a great host when at LABAT. Will greatly miss him. 

Dr. Marvin Ho, Hammond group, USA: I am really sorry and shocked to hear about this sad story. This is a true loss for lead industry and he will be missed.

Dr. Francisco Trinidad, Exide Technologies, Spain: It is really very sad news that Prof. Detchko Pavlov left us and would like to express my condolences to the family and friends through this wonderful group of followers he was able to create along the years. I also have a lot of good experiences around him and the tremendous scientific work that inspire us to be proactive in solving technical issues in our daily work. There is a colleague in our plant (that retired some years ago) that always tried to explain his thoughts based on Pavlov´s articles or books. Back in the 90´s, I told him: if you want to discuss your views with Pavlov, you have the opportunity to meet him here in a few days. He didn´t trust me until he saw Detchko in front of our new lab, and all the team was really impressed about the human quality of a person like Prof. Pavlov. We will miss and remember him forever.

David Boden, All Points Consulting, USA: My heart is broken. We have all lost a great mentor and friend.

Dr. Gui-Ping Dai, Chaowei Group, China: Prof. Detchko did a great show on 2014 ALABC China meeting in Huzhou city and Chaowei group, and that will be an excellent memory in our life, also he will be living in our heart forever. He is the topmost scientist in lead-acid, and it is a huge loss for lead-acid.

Kevin Campbell, Digatron Power Electronics GmbH, Germany: Such sad news, a truly great man, a dedicated scientist and a friend.

Zhu Fuxing, Chinese LABAT Man journal, China: We are shocked to learn of the passing away of Prof. D.Pavlov, and we are filled with deep sorrow. Prof. D.Pavlov is a wellknown and esteemed scientist in the area of electrochemical energy. He put a lot of effort into research and development of lead-acid batteries and achieved great successes which will always be remembered in the memory of the battery community in all parts of the world.

Antonio Ferreira, Moura Batteries, Brazil: I have already sent my condolences over the weekend. I noted that many had send stories about our dear departed professor, so here is mine. About 15 yrs ago I visited him in mid February and being a Sunday he suggested we take a trip to the Vitosha mountains outside of Sofia. The invitation was gladly accepted and off we went with Geno Papazov up the snowy mountain roads. We stopped at Detchko's beloved dasha. I noticed it was surrounded by luxurious mansions and pointed this out to him, he smiled and whispered 'Mafia'. We then took the cable card to the top of the mountain and halfway up the steep climb it came to a sudden stop. The temperature outside was in the -10 C range and as the minutes ticked away and the cold began to be more intensely felt, I look at Detchko for guidance, he just sat stoically and with that unforgivable smile said: 'Not to worry, this is common in our country!' Sure enough, within the next minutes, off we went to the summit. This frozen experience was one I will never forget! Our dear departed professor had a way to calm and reassure us and enlightened us for decades about the mysteries of the lead acid battery.

Dr. Laurent Torcheaux, EDF, France: I am very sad of this but remembers are sweet and I keep extreme good things and admiration from Detchko.

Jochen Settelein, ISC-Fraunhofer, Germany: These are very sad news about Prof. Pavlov. I feel very sorry for you and all his former colleagues and actually for the whole community. I hope the Bulgarian Academy of Science will continue his passionate work. 

Konstantin Rybalka and Louiza Beketaeva, A.N. Frumkin Institute of Electrochemistry, Russian Academy of Sciences, Russia:...We keep the warmest memories from our meetings with Professor Detchko Pavlov... 

Allan Cooper, EALABC, UK: Like David Prengaman I first met Detchko in Sofia in the early days of the ALABC - meeting his team and seeing the amazing work they were doing with the limited resources at their disposal. Somehow we also found time to discuss the merits of Bulgarian wine during the day and on the way back to the airport he made a deliberate detour to show me a typical Bulgarian 'wine shop' - were wine was being dispensed into customers' own containers via second-hand petrol pumps - the choice being red, white or brandy. Not having been provided with any second-hand laboratory containers - we moved on to a local Supermarket where a better pre-bottled selection was on offer!

Dough Lambert, WIRTZ Manufacturing Co., Inc., UK: Sadly, again, the inevitable has taken from us; a truly valuable and humble Man, who was a wonderful asset to our lead-acid battery industry. Professor Pavlov will be sorely missed...

Dr. Jerome Cole, ILZRO, USA: Thank you for sending on this sad news. Professor Detchko Pavlov was among the very few great men that I have met in my life. I first encountered him in the early 1970s when he had contact with ILZRO's Bert Cook, at that time ILZRO's manager of battery research. Communications between the US and Bulgaria were difficult during that time, but it was clear that Prof. Pavlov was a leading figure in the world of lead acid battery research. With the advent of ALABC in 1992, we began a more direct relationship with Prof. Pavlov. I recall his visiting our offices in Research Triangle Park for technical meetings. Finally, I had the great honor and privilege of accepting the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences Gaston Plante' Medal from Prof. Pavlov on behalf of ILZRO and ALABC in 2002. The world has lost a great scientist and a great man. His contributions will not be forgotten.

Dr. Charles K.J. Huang, Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI), Taiwan: Prof. Pavlov was my most respected elderly in the battery field. It's too sad to say how much of my sorrow. I will always remember all the kindness from him. Please forward my condolence to prof. Pavlov's families...

Zubo Zhang, Camel Energy, China: I am shocked and saddened to learn of the passing of Dr.Pavlov,Like so many others, Most of my colleagues in Camel and I get involved in battery life accept education and guidance from Dr. Pavlov.His unique contributions is not just on the scientific study but also a banner of the whole industry. Lucky enough for those of us to get to work with him.
May the deceased rest in peace while the living must move on with their lives and carrying his legacy into the future. Requiescat in pace, Academician Detchko Pavlov.

Shanmuga Thangadurai, Reem Batteries & Power Appliances Co., SAOC, Oman: It is shocking and very sad to hear that prof. Detchko Pavlov passed away. I pray that his soul rests in peace with God Almighty. Currently, I am away from Oman. I will try to call you next week

Maura McDermott, International Lead Association (ILA), UK: I would like to pass on my condolences to LABD Group. He was a huge part of your organisation and will be missed. I always enjoyed working with him when we were planning our events and he was ever so helpful to me personally. I always enjoyed meeting him at the ELBCs and will miss him a lot. May he rest in peace.

Seyed Mojtaba Tabaatabaai, Iran: I became so much sorry...Prof. Pavlov was a great scientist and also so much kind. Please convey my condolence to his family and his colleagues.

Prof. Ivan A. Kazarinov, Saratov State University named after N.G. Chernishevsky, Russia: Примите от редколлегии журнала "Электрохимическая энергетика" и коллектива кафедры физической химии Саратовского госуниверситета им. Н.Г. Чернышевского соболезнования в связи с кончиной академика Дечко Павлова. Скорбим. 

Avishay Amir, E.Schnapps & Co. Works LTD, Israel: My condolences to the death of prof. Pavlov I liked the man and his wisdom very much.

Mukesh Bhandari, Firefly International Energy Co., India: Lead Acid Battery Industry has lost a Great Scientist, Expert,Teacher & Guide in Dr. Pavlov.

Shenyang Storage Battery Research Institute, China: We are distressed to learn of the passing away of Prof. D.Pavlov and deeply grieved. Prof. Pavlov, we all have great respect for the scientist, his outstanding contributions to the electrochemical energy storage lead-acid battery science are indelibly engraved on the memory of the lead-acid battery community in all parts of the world, and we firmly believe that Prof. Pavlov's cause will be carried on and pushed forward by his team.

Letter of Sympathy for Prof. Detchko Pavlov from NARADA >>



Dr. Boris Monahov, Project Manager of ALABC, USA: With deepest sorrow, we want to share with you that Academician Professor Dr. Detchko Pavlov of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, one of our most prominent and active scientific partners and supporters, has left us at the age of 87 on Friday, August 25, as a result of health issues during the last three months. Till the end of his days his life and passion were devoted to understanding and improving lead-acid batteries, as well as to helping those who study, design and produce them be more successful. He belonged to the hottest supporters of the ALABC work and mission. His unique contributions to the ALABC projects (six full projects plus two project-like extensions) with the headed by him lead-acid battery department of IEES (former CLEPS) of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences provided outstanding value to these projects and inspired several researchers and engineers working on other as well as on future projects. 

Gerry Woolf, BEST Magazine, UK: There’s scarcely an aspect of lead-acid technology that Detchko Pavlov didn’t contribute to and improve. When I met him nearly 20 years ago, he was involved in the fight of his life, trying to bring research funding to his beloved CLEPS in Bulgaria, as the former Soviet satellite state saw traditional funding disappear. Not something most of us will do when pushing 70. When the going gets tough, the tough get going. In the years when many think about retirement, Pavlov’s enormous energy and enthusiasm drove him on for nearly two more decades— and what contributions his work has given the battery industry.
Those of us who met him can consider themselves honoured. And those who worked with him or were taught by him more fortunate than they know. READ MORE >>

Batteries International Magazine, UK: Detchko Pavlov, scholar, academician and probably the greatest expert on the lead battery that has yet lived, died on the morning of August 25. He was widely respected, widely liked and one of the leading figures in advancing our knowledge — both theoretical and practical — of the electrochemical workings of the battery. READ MORE >>