INDIANAPOLIS, Sept. 8, 2013 — New discoveries from the labs of several Nobel laureates will be presented here this week during the 246th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society (ACS), the world's largest scientific society. Research from the laureates' teams will be among almost 7,000 presentations during the event.
They are Ei-ichi Negishi, Ph.D.; Richard Schrock, Ph.D.; George A. Olah, Ph.D.; and Roald Hoffmann, Ph.D.
Negishi, the Herbert C. Brown Distinguished Professor of Organic Chemistry at Purdue University, shared the 2010 Nobel Prize in Chemistry "for palladium-catalyzed cross couplings in organic synthesis." This helped develop techniques to synthesize complex carbon molecules that have had an enormous impact on the manufacture of medicines and other products.
Schrock, who is with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, shared the 2005 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Yves Chauvin and Robert H. Grubbs, Ph.D., for the development of the "metathesis method." That new way to make plastics, medicines and other products was an advance in green chemistry, because it reduces the production of potentially hazardous waste compared with other approaches.
Olah, who is with the University of Southern California, won the 1994 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for work on "carbocations," charged molecules that were considered too unstable to study. Olah developed a way to isolate these molecules, which was useful in the oil and coal industries.
Hoffmann, who is with Cornell University, shared the 1981 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Kenichi Fukui, Ph.D., for their theories on how chemicals combine and form different substances. Such changes play a vital role in forming new compounds from natural raw materials, such as using petroleum to make plastics.