Mulliken, Robert S.

Card signed by the American chemist & physicist, awarded 1966 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for development of molecular orbital theory

Price: $45.00

Description:
(1896-1986) American physicist and chemist, primarily responsible for the early development of molecular orbital theory, the elaboration of the molecular orbital method of computing the structure of molecules, or, showing how electrons behave when atoms combine to form molecules. He received the 1966 Nobel Prize for Chemistry and the 1983 Priestly Medal. Son of a professor of organic chemistry at MIT, Mulliken helped with editorial work when his father wrote his text on organic compound identification, becoming expert on organic chemical nomenclature. He received a 1917 BS in chemistry from MIT then took a position at American University making poison gas under James B. Conant. He got his Ph.D. in 1921 from the University of Chicago based on research into the separation of isotopes of mercury by evaporation and continued in his isotope separation by this method. At Chicago, he received a grant from the National Research Council (NRC) for his work on isotope separation. The grant was extended in 1923 for 2 years so he could study isotope effects on band spectra of such diatomic molecules as boron nitride (BN). He learned spectrographic technique and quantum theory at Harvard and in 1925 & 1927, traveled to Europe, working with outstanding spectroscopists and quantum theorists (all eventually received Nobel Prizes) and Friedrich Hund, Max Born's assistant. They, and Pauli, were developing the new quantum mechanics that would supersede the old quantum theory. Mulliken was particularly influenced by Hund, who had been working on quantum interpretation of band spectra of diatomic molecules, the same spectra Mulliken investigated at Harvard. In 1927 Mulliken worked with Hund and developed his molecular orbital theory in which electrons are assigned to states that extend over an entire molecule. In consequence, molecular orbital theory was also referred to as the Hund-Mulliken theory. He taught in NYU's Physics Department 1926-28, his first recognition as a physicist; though his work had been considered important by chemists, it clearly was on the borderline between both sciences and both would claim him from this point on. He returned to the University of Chicago becoming a professor of physics in 1931. He ultimately held a position jointly the physics and chemistry departments. At NYU and Chicago, he continued to refine his molecular-orbital theory. Hund and Mulliken's molecular-orbital method proved to be more flexible and applicable to a vast variety of types of molecules and molecular fragments, and eclipsed the VB method then popular. As a result, he received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1966. He became a member of the National Academy of Sciences in 1936, youngest member in its history then. Mulliken population analysis is named after him, a method of assigning charges to atoms in a molecule. He directed the Information Office for the University of Chicago's Plutonium Project 1942-45. 3 x 5 card signed under printed “compliments of”.

Condition: Very good
Type:Signed Card






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