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Scientists » Chemists » GEOFFREY WILKINSON

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Full name : Geoffrey Wilkinson
Alias : Geoffrey Wilkinson
Gender : Men
Country : England
Birthday : 14-07-1921
Address : Todmorden, West Riding of Yorkshire, England
Animals : The Rooster
Zodiac : Cancer
Died : 26-09-1996
Father : Harold Wilkinson
Mother : Ruth Crowther
Siblings :
Wife : Lise Solver
Children : Anne, Pernille
Education : Imperial College London
Position :
Activists : Chemists

Sir Geoffrey Wilkinson was an English chemist and educator who was jointly awarded the ‘Nobel Prize in Chemistry’ in 1973 along with German chemist Ernst Otto Fischer for their independent but related pioneering work in metallocenes and other aspects in the field of organometallic chemistry. Through his investigations on the products of atomic fission reactions he was able to discover several new isotopes. He successfully deduced the structure of the newly developed synthesized compound which was called dicyclopentadienyl iron (at present called ferrocene) and displayed that the compound is composed of two carbon rings each of five sides, bound on opposite sides of an iron atom thus forming an organometallic molecule. He carried on with his research in this field and synthesized many other organometallic compounds, also known as ‘sandwich compounds’. The study of metal-to-hydrogen bonding by Wilkinson, especially the discovery of his homogeneous hydrogenation catalyst for alkenes, known as the Wilkinson's Catalyst composed of a rhodium metal complex with the metal center being linked to three large phosphine ligands proved to be of great significance in the field of organic and inorganic chemistry and play a vital role in industrial applications. He worked at the ‘Atomic Energy Project’ in Canada and taught at the ‘Harvard University’, ‘University of California’ at Berkeley, ‘Massachusetts Institute of Technology’ and ‘Imperial College, London. Apart from ‘Nobel Prize’, he received several awards including ‘ACS Award in Inorganic Chemistry’ (1965), the ‘Royal Medal’ (1981) and the ‘Davy Medal’ (1996) among others. In 1965 he was elected a ‘Fellow of the Royal Society’ (FRS) and in 1976 he was honored with the title of Knight.

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