José Retamales Espinoza, was born in Punta Arenas, Chile on 5th of August, 1948. His primary degree was in Chemical Engineering at the Technical State University, Santiago, Chile,and after finishing this in 1973 he lectured at the Mathematics and Physics Department, and at the Chemical Engineering Dept., Technical State University, in Punta Arenas. He won the first prize in a national contest for energy efficiency in house design in 1979, the same year he was awarded a first British Council scholarship to do a Master of Science degree on nuclear science at the University of Bradford, U.K. Afterworking for a short period in the Energy Efficiency Research Unit at the University of Sheffield, he returned to Punta Arenas in 1981 as Head of the Chemical Engineering Dept., University of Magallanes, on his return to Punta Arenas in 1981. Several British Council scholarships allowed him to follow part time extramural PhD studies at the University of Bradford obtaining a PhD in 1989. In 1990 he was elected as the Vice Chancellor (Rector) of the University of Magallanes and managed to double in four years the University budget, number of students, lecturers with a postgraduate degree and the number of university research grants.He has been a Member of the Board of the Chilean Nuclear Energy Commission, (1991-1994), Visiting Professor at Mc Gill University, Montreal, Canada (1995), Member of the Board of the Chilean National Oil Company, ENAP( 2002-2006), Chairman of the XV Chilean Congress of Chemical Engineering CIQ (2002) and Member of the Selection Panel for Science and Technology Projects, Guadalajara, Mexico (2003).Author of 20 publications in scientific journals he has also formed two companies at the University of Magallanes to commercialize the results of his scientific projects. From December 2003 he has been the Director of the Chilean Antarctic Institute and was elected Chairman of COMNAP in 2006.