Nobel Prizes and Laureates

Nobel Prizes and Laureates

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 1973
Ernst Otto Fischer, Geoffrey Wilkinson

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Geoffrey Wilkinson - Facts

Geoffrey Wilkinson

Geoffrey Wilkinson

Born: 14 July 1921, Todmorden, United Kingdom

Died: 26 September 1996, London, United Kingdom

Affiliation at the time of the award: Imperial College, London, United Kingdom

Prize motivation: "for their pioneering work, performed independently, on the chemistry of the organometallic, so called sandwich compounds"

Field: inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry

Prize share: 1/2


The world around us is made up of atoms that are assembled in molecules. Even though there is an enormous number of molecules in nature, it is possible to synthesize molecules in the laboratory that are not found in nature. In 1952 Geoffrey Wilkinson and Ernst Otto Fischer, working independently of one another, revealed a new type of chemical compound consisting of a carbon compound and a metallic atom. In these sandwich structures, which do not exist in nature, two ring-shaped carbon compounds enclose a metallic atom on each side.

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