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Three eminent chemists at Leeds University


Staying in student halls for the first year at Leeds
Norman Greenwood Scientist
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During that year I stayed in one of the halls of residence, and by a most amazing coincidence, one would have to say, the person... the member of staff who happened to be in charge of the Henry Price hall of residence, was Jimmy Austin.

Jimmy Austin, whom you may not be familiar with, was actually the person who I replaced in Trinity College, Melbourne. He was a Melbourne graduate. He’d been the tutor at Trinity College before me, it was his leaving that triggered the vacancy. His sister, June, was a girl that I knew, because she had been a lab cadet like I was, in CSIR [Council for Scientific and Industrial Research], but had subsequently married an American serviceman and gone to live in America. And he was not only in charge of Henry Price Hall, but he was also in the Chemistry Department. So I immediately knew Jimmy Austin, and it turned out that Don Baulsh was there – he’d been to University High School, so I knew quite a few of the people, as well as the chemists.

Norman Greenwood (1925-2012) was born in Australia and graduated from Melbourne University before going to Cambridge. His wide-ranging research in inorganic and structural chemistry made major advances in the chemistry of boron hydrides and other main-group element compounds. He also pioneered the application of Mössbauer spectroscopy to problems in chemistry. He was a prolific writer and inspirational lecturer on chemical and educational themes, and held numerous visiting professorships throughout the world.

Listeners: Brian Johnson

Professor Brian FG Johnson FRS, FRSE, FRS Chem, FAcad Eu, FAS. Professor of Inorganic Chemistry University of Edinburgh 1991-1995, Professor of Inorganic Chemistry University of Cambridge 1995-2005, Master Fitzwilliam College Cambridge 1999-2005. Research interests include studies of transition metal carbonyls, organometallic chemistry, nano- particles and homogeneous catalysis. Professor Johnson is the author of over 1000 research articles and papers.

Tags: Melbourne University, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, USA, Jimmy Austin, Donald L Baulch

Duration: 1 minute, 21 seconds

Date story recorded: May 2011

Date story went live: 25 November 2011