Born in Roma in 1938, he graduated in Physics at the University of Milano in 1963. He spent a few years studying gas-surface interactions in ultra high vacuum both experimentally and theoretically, first at a company (SAES Getters), next at the University of Torino under the direction of Prof. Franco Ricca.

Since 1970, his interests moved towards the semi-empirical and ab initio simulation of the properties of crystalline surfaces and bulk materials.












His whole career has taken place at the University of Torino, where he became full professor in Quantum Chemistry in 1981 and was awarded the title of Emeritus Professor in 2009.

He has always been working for promoting the extension of the powerful quantum mechanical (QM) techniques employed in molecular quantum chemistry to the study of the electronic structure of solids. Accordingly, in the mid-seventies, he started with R. Dovesi, C. Roetti and V. R. Saunders the pioneering CRYSTAL project.

The CRYSTAL computer program, published in 1988, has been for many years the only ab initio code for periodic structures distributed to the scientific community, and it is still one of the most popular codes in this area of research.

The availability of a powerful tool for the solution of the Schroedinger equation for periodic systems was also instrumental, in Pisani's scientific strategy, for tackling the problem of local defects in crystals.

After his collaboration with Tom Grimley in Liverpool, in the early seventies, on this subject he devised an original technique, based on a combination of Green function and standard QM approach, which were implemented by him and his collaborators in the public computer program EMBED.

In the last years, he has promoted, with the group of Martin Schütz of the Regensburg University, the CRYSCOR project, aiming at implementing rigorous post-HF treatments of electron correlation in CRYSTAL, based on a localized representation of the HF manifold.

This effort represents in a sense the completion of Pisani's career, intended to provide the scientific community with computational tools for the rigorous theoretical study of problems in solid state chemistry.

His scientific contribution to computational quantum chemistry and physics is invaluable. In addition to his outstanding professional qualities, Cesare has been a wonderful and caring person. We owe him a debt of gratitude for his friendship and patient guidance.


Roberto Dovesi