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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry
Awarded for Outstanding contributions in Chemistry
Presented by Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences
Country Sweden
First awarded 1901
Official Website
Jacobus Henricus van 't Hoff (1852 – 1911) was the first person to receive the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, for his discovery of the laws of chemical dynamics and osmotic pressure in solutions.

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry (Swedish: Nobelpriset i kemi) is awarded annually by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences to scientists in the various fields of chemistry. It is one of the five Nobel Prizes established by the will of Alfred Nobel in 1895, awarded for outstanding contributions in chemistry, physics, literature, peace, and physiology or medicine. This award is administered by the Nobel Foundation and awarded by a Nobel Committee that consists of five members elected by The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. The first Nobel Prize in Chemistry was awarded in 1901 to Jacobus Henricus van 't Hoff, of the Netherlands, "for his discovery of the laws of chemical dynamics and osmotic pressure in solutions." The award is presented in Stockholm at an annual ceremony on December 10, the anniversary of Nobel's death. The 2008 Nobel Prize was awarded to Osamu Shimomura, Roger Tsien and Marty Chalfie for their work on green fluorescent protein. They were awarded the prize amount of 10,000,000 SEK (slightly more than 1 million, or US$1.4 million). The 2009 Nobel Prize was awarded to Thomas Steitz, Ada Yonath and Venkatraman Ramakrishnan.[1]


Award ceremony

The committee and institution serving as the selection board for the prize typically announce the names of the laureates in October. The prize is then awarded at formal ceremonies held annually on December 10, the anniversary of Alfred Nobel's death. "The highlight of the Nobel Prize Award Ceremony in Stockholm is when each Nobel Laureate steps forward to receive the prize from the hands of His Majesty the King of Sweden. The Nobel Laureate receives three things: a diploma, a medal and a document confirming the prize amount" ("What the Nobel Laureates Receive"). Later the Nobel Banquet is held in Stockholm City Hall.

A maximum of three laureates and two different works may be selected. The award can be given to a maximum of three recipients per year. It consists of a gold medal, a diploma, and a cash grant

Nomination and selection

Compared with some other prizes, the Nobel Prize nomination and selection process is long and rigorous, a key reason why it has become the most important prize in chemistry.

The Nobel Laureates in chemistry are selected by a committee that consists of five members elected by The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. In its first stage, several thousand people are asked to nominate candidates. These names are scrutinized and discussed by experts until only the winners remain. This slow and thorough process, is arguably what gives the prize its importance.

Forms, which amount to a personal and exclusive invitation, are sent to about three thousand selected individuals to invite them to submit nominations. The names of the nominees are never publicly announced, and neither are they told that they have been considered for the Prize. Nomination records are sealed for fifty years. In practice some nominees do become known. It is also common for publicists to make such a claim, founded or not.

The nominations are screened by committee, and a list is produced of approximately two hundred preliminary candidates. This list is forwarded to selected experts in the field. They remove all but approximately fifteen names. The committee submits a report with recommendations to the appropriate institution.

While posthumous nominations are not permitted, awards can occur if the individual died in the months between the nomination and the decision of the prize committee.

The award in chemistry requires the significance of achievements being recognized is "tested by time." In practice it means that the lag between the discovery and the award is typically on the order of 20 years and can be much longer. As a downside of this approach, not all scientists live long enough for their work to be recognized. Some important scientific discoveries are never considered for a Prize, as the discoverers may have died by the time the impact of their work is realized. For example, the contributions of Rosalind Franklin in discovering the structure of DNA: her x-ray crystallography citing the shape of DNA as a helix, were not realized until after her death, and the recipients of the prize were Watson, Crick, and Wilkins.

The Award

The Nobel Prize medallion.

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry consists of a gold medallion (the Nobel Prize Medal for Physics), a diploma, and a monetary grant.[2] The Nobel Prize Medals, which have been minted in Sweden since 1902, are registered trademarks of the Nobel Foundation. Their engraved designs are internationally-recognized symbols of the prestige of the Nobel Prize.

The front side (obverse) of the Nobel Prize Medals for Physics, Chemistry, Literature, and Physiology or Medicine (for the "Swedish Prizes") features the same engraved profile of Alfred Nobel with his name abbreviated as "Alfr. Nobel" to the left of his profile and the dates of his birth and death to the right of it (in capital letters and Roman numerals).[2]

The reverse side of the medals for Physics and Chemistry is "The medal of The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences," which "represents Nature in the form of a goddess resembling Isis, emerging from the clouds and holding in her arms a cornucopia. The veil which covers her cold and austere face is held up by the Genius of Science".[3]

The grant is currently approximately 10 million SEK, slightly less than 1 million (US$1.4 million or £0.9 million ).[2][4]


See also


External links


Study guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiversity

Welcome to the Wikiversity learning project for the Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

Participants in this learning project explore the science and practical applications for each year's Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

The Wikipedia articles about topics related to each Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine tens to be very technical descriptions of the underlying science. The goal of this learning project is to complement the Wikipedia articles in two ways. The first goal is to provide a user-friendly introduction to the topic. This means creating learning resources for people who would normally be unable to understand a technical Wikipedia article on the topic. These user-friendly introductions might particularly focus on the practical medical implications behind Nobel Prize-winning scientific research. The second goal is to provide learning resources that allow interested university students to explore the science behind each awarded Nobel Prize in more detail than is possible with the related Wikipedia article.

By year

See also

Simple English

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry is awarded by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. It awards people who have made progess in the scientific area of chemistry, those who have worked hard to learn more and have succeeded.

The Prize is given every year. It is just one of many Nobel Prizes. A famous winner of this prize was Marie Curie 1911, who discovered radium with her husband Pierre. She was the first person to win the prize twice; the first time was for physics in 1903.


List of winners[1]

= 1901 — 1909


  • 1901 - Jacobus Henricus van 't Hoff for work on chemical dynamics and osmotic pressure in solutions.
  • 1902 - Hermann Emil Fischer for work on sugar and purine syntheses.
  • 1903 - Svante August Arrhenius for his electrolytic theory of dissociation.
  • 1904 - Sir William Ramsay for discovering inert gases in the air.
  • 1905 - Johann Friedrich Wilhelm Adolf von Baeyer for work on organic dyes and hydroaromatic compounds.
  • 1906 - Henri Moissan for the discovery of fluorine and the Moissan electric furnace
  • 1907 - Eduard Buchner his discovery of cell-free fermentation
  • 1908 - Ernest Rutherford for his work on radioactive substances
  • 1909 - Wilhelm Ostwald for his work on catalysis, chemical equilibria and rates of reaction.

1910 - 1919

  • 1910 - Otto Wallach for his work on alicyclic compounds.
  • 1911 - Marie Curie for her discovery of radium and polonium.
  • 1912 - Victor Grignard for his discovery of the Grignard reagent.
  • 1912 - Paul Sabatier for his method of hydrogenating organic compounds.
  • 1913 - Alfred Werner for his work on atoms and molecules.
  • 1914 - Theodore William Richards for his work on finding the atomic weight of chemical elements.
  • 1915 - Richard Martin Willstätter for his work on chlorophyll.
  • 1916 - No award
  • 1917 - No award
  • 1918 - Fritz Haber for synthesis of ammonia from its elements.
  • 1919 - No award

1920 - 1929

  • 1920 - Walther Hermann Nernst for his work on thermochemistry.
  • 1921 - Frederick Soddy for his work on radioactive substances and isotopes.
  • 1922 - Francis William Aston for his discovery of isotopes and the mass spectrograph.
  • 1923 - Fritz Pregl for discovering the way to do micro-analysis of organic substances.
  • 1924 - No award
  • 1925 - Richard Adolf Zsigmondy for discovering a basic method in colloid chemistry.
  • 1926 - The (Theodor) Svedberg for his work on disperse systems.
  • 1927 - Heinrich Otto Wieland for his work on bile acids.
  • 1928 - Adolf Otto Reinhold Windaus for his work on sterols and vitamins.
  • 1929 - Arthur Harden and Hans Karl August Simon von Euler-Chelpin for their work on fermenting sugar and fermentative enzymes.

1930 - 1939

  • 1930 - Hans Fischer
  • 1931 - Carl Bosch, Friedrich Bergius
  • 1932 - Irving Langmuir
  • 1933 - No award
  • 1934 - Harold C. Urey
  • 1935 - Frédéric Joliot, Irène Joliot-Curie
  • 1936 - Peter Debye
  • 1937 - Norman Haworth, Paul Karrer
  • 1938 - Richard Kuhn
  • 1939 - Adolf Butenandt, Leopold Ruzicka

1940 - 1949

  • 1940 - No award
  • 1941 - No award
  • 1942 - No award
  • 1943 - George de Hevesy
  • 1944 - Otto Hahn
  • 1945 - Artturi Virtanen
  • 1946 - James B. Sumner, John H. Northrop, Wendell M. Stanley
  • 1947 - Sir Robert Robinson
  • 1948 - Arne Tiselius
  • 1949 - William F. Giauque

1950 - 1959

  • 1950 - Otto Diels, Kurt Alder
  • 1951 - Edwin M. McMillan, Glenn T. Seaborg
  • 1952 - Archer J.P. Martin, Richard L.M. Synge
  • 1953 - Hermann Staudinger
  • 1954 - Linus Pauling
  • 1955 - Vincent du Vigneaud
  • 1956 - Sir Cyril Hinshelwood, Nikolay Semenov
  • 1957 - Lord Todd
  • 1958 - Frederick Sanger
  • 1959 - Jaroslav Heyrovsky

1960 - 1969

  • 1960 - Willard F. Libby
  • 1961 - Melvin Calvin
  • 1962 - Max F. Perutz, John C. Kendrew
  • 1963 - Karl Ziegler, Giulio Natta
  • 1964 - Dorothy Crowfoot Hodgkin
  • 1965 - Robert B. Woodward
  • 1966 - Robert S. Mulliken
  • 1967 - Manfred Eigen, Ronald G.W. Norrish, George Porter
  • 1968 - Lars Onsager
  • 1969 - Derek Barton, Odd Hassel

1970 - 1979

  • 1970 - Luis Leloir
  • 1971 - Gerhard Herzberg
  • 1972 - Christian Anfinsen, Stanford Moore, William H. Stein
  • 1973 - Ernst Otto Fischer, Geoffrey Wilkinson
  • 1974 - Paul J. Flory
  • 1975 - John Cornforth, Vladimir Prelog
  • 1976 - William Lipscomb
  • 1977 - Ilya Prigogine
  • 1978 - Peter Mitchell
  • 1979 - Herbert C. Brown, Georg Wittig

1980 - 1989

  • 1980 - Paul Berg, Walter Gilbert, Frederick Sanger
  • 1981 - Kenichi Fukui, Roald Hoffmann
  • 1982 - Aaron Klug
  • 1983 - Henry Taube
  • 1984 - Bruce Merrifield
  • 1985 - Herbert A. Hauptman, Jerome Karle
  • 1986 - Dudley R. Herschbach, Yuan T. Lee, John C. Polanyi
  • 1987 - Donald J. Cram, Jean-Marie Lehn, Charles J. Pedersen
  • 1988 - Johann Deisenhofer, Robert Huber, Hartmut Michel
  • 1989 - Sidney Altman, Thomas R. Cech

1990 - 1999

  • 1990 - Elias James Corey
  • 1991 - Richard R. Ernst
  • 1992 - Rudolph A. Marcus
  • 1993 - Kary B. Mullis, Michael Smith
  • 1994 - George A. Olah
  • 1995 - Paul J. Crutzen, Mario J. Molina, F. Sherwood Rowland
  • 1996 - Robert F. Curl Jr., Sir Harold Kroto, Richard E. Smalley
  • 1997 - Paul D. Boyer, John E. Walker, Jens C. Skou
  • 1998 - Walter Kohn, John Pople
  • 1999 - Ahmed Zewail

2000 - 2009

  • 2000 - Alan Heeger, Alan G. MacDiarmid, Hideki Shirakawa
  • 2001 - William S. Knowles, Ryoji Noyori, K. Barry Sharpless
  • 2002 - John B. Fenn, Koichi Tanaka, Kurt Wüthrich
  • 2003 - Peter Agre, Roderick MacKinnon
  • 2004 - Aaron Ciechanover, Avram Hershko, Irwin Rose
  • 2005 - Yves Chauvin, Robert H. Grubbs, Richard R. Schrock
  • 2006 - Roger D. Kornberg
  • 2007 - Gerhard Ertl
  • 2008 - Osamu Shimomura, Martin Chalfie, Roger Y. Tsien
  • 2009 - Venkatraman Ramakrishnan, Thomas A. Steitz, Ada E. Yonath



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