Herbert August Laitinen and Analytical Chemistry

C  O  N  T  E  N  T  S

Noyes Laboratory:
One Hundred Years of Chemistry

A Century of Accomplishment
The Bare Facts
Nobel Prize Winners
ACS Presidents
Priestley Medal Winner

Fine Chemicals

The Illinois State Water Survey

Chemists and Chemistry at Noyes:
Roger Adams:
"The Chief"
Ludwig F. Audrieth and Synthetic Sweeteners
John C. Bailar Jr. and Coordination Chemistry
St. Elmo Brady: Pioneer
George L. Clark and High-Intensity X-Ray Tubes
Willis H. Flygare and Microwave Spectrometry
Reynold C. Fuson: Teaching Chemistry
Herbert S. Gutowsky and NMR Spectroscopy
B. Smith Hopkins and the Chemistry of Rare Earths
Henry Fraser Johnstone and the Study of Air Pollution
Herbert A. Laitinen and Analytical Chemistry
Carl "Speed" Marvel: Advances in Polymer Chemistry
William A. Noyes: The Department Comes of Age
Arthur W. Palmer: The Early Years
Samuel W. Parr and Applied Chemistry
Charles C. Price III and Antimalarials
Worth H. Rodebush and Physical Chemistry
William C. Rose and Amino Acids
George F. Smith and the Aerosol Can
Harold R. Snyder and Antimalarials
Marion Sparks and Chemical Information

Landmark Designation

Herbert Laitinen joined the faculty of the University of Illinois in 1940, the same year he received his doctorate from the University of Minnesota where he studied under I. M. Kolthoff. For several years, Laitinen taught inorganic and general chemistry; in 1947 he began teaching analytical chemistry. He became head of the analytical chemistry division in 1953.

Laitinen influenced the intellectual content of the analytical chemistry curriculum both at Illinois during his thirty-seven years on the faculty and nationally. In the process, he helped define the discipline as it moved from the analysis of various materials to the principles and methods of electrochemistry, spectroscopy, separations, and instrumentation. In 1960 Laitinen published a classic text in the field, Chemical Analysis, which made graduate instruction rigorous and more complete. His contributions were recognized in 1961 when the American Chemical Society granted him its Award in Analytical Chemistry. In 1986 the ACS noted his devotion to teaching with its Division of Analytical Chemistry Excellence in Teaching Award.

Laitinen made Analytical Chemistry the leading scientific journal in the field while serving as its editor from 1966 to 1979. He published 168 editorials while editor of Analytical Chemistry.

Laitinen had varied research interests. He was a leader in synthetic rubber research during the Second World War. He also conducted research in electrochemistry, polarography, diffusion, polarization of microelectrodes, environmental science, and surface chemistry.


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