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Nobel Prize in Chemistry

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry is one of the Nobel Prizes established by Alfred Nobel, a Swedish inventor and scientist. The Nobel Prize in Chemistry is awarded annually and recognizes individuals in the field of Chemistry. As designated in the will of Alfred Nobel, the Nobel Prize in Chemistry shall be distributed "… to the person who shall have made the most important chemical discovery or improvement."


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Nobel Laureates
(Click on laureate names for biographies)

2008Osamu Shimomura, Martin Chalfie, and Roger Y. Tsien"for the discovery and development of the green fluorescent protein, GFP"
2007Gerhard Ertl"for his studies of chemical processes on solid surfaces"
2006Roger D. Kornberg"for his studies of the molecular basis of eukaryotic transcription"
2005Yves Chauvin,
Robert H. Grubbs, and Richard R. Schrock
"for the development of the metathesis method in organic synthesis"
2004Aaron Ciechanover, Avram Hershko, and
Irwin Rose
"for the discovery of ubiquitin-mediated protein degradation"
2003Peter Agre and
Roderick MacKinnon

"for discoveries concerning channels in cell membranes"

"for the discovery of water channels"

"for structural and mechanistic studies of ion channels"

2002John B. Fenn and
Koichi Tanaka
"for the development of methods for identification and structure analyses of biological macromolecules"
"for their development of soft desorption ionisation methods for mass spectrometric analyses of biological macromolecules"
2002Kurt Wüthrich"for his development of nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy for determining the three-dimensional structure of biological macromolecules in solution"
2001William S. Knowles and Ryoji Noyori"for their work on chirally catalysed hydrogenation reactions"
2001K. Barry Sharpless"for his work on chirally catalysed oxidation reactions"
2000Alan Heeger,
Alan G. MacDiarmid, and Hideki Shirakawa
for the discovery and development of conductive polymers"
1999Ahmed Zewail"for his studies of the transition states of chemical reactions using femtosecond spectroscopy"
1998Walter Kohn"for his development of the density-functional theory"
1998John Pople"for his development of computational methods in quantum chemistry"
1997Paul D. Boyer and
John E. Walker
"for their elucidation of the enzymatic mechanism underlying the synthesis of adenosine
triphosphate (ATP)"
1997Jens C. Skou"for the first discovery of an ion-transporting enzyme, Na+, K+ -ATPase"
1996Robert F. Curl Jr.,
Sir Harold Kroto and Richard E. Smalley
"for their discovery of fullerenes"
1995Paul J. Crutzen,
Mario J. Molina, and
F. Sherwood Rowland
"for their work in atmospheric chemistry, particularly concerning the formation and decomposition of ozone"
1994George A. Olah"for his contribution to carbocation chemistry"
1993Kary B. Mullis

"for contributions to the developments of methods within DNA-based chemistry"

"for his invention of the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method"

1993Michael Smith"for his fundamental contributions to the establishment of oligonucleotide-based, site-directed mutagenesis and its development for protein studies"
1992Rudolph A. Marcus"for his contributions to the theory of electron transfer reactions in chemical systems"
1991Richard R. Ernst"for his contributions to the development of the methodology of high resolution nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy" 
1990Elias James Corey"for his development of the theory and methodology of organic synthesis"
1989Sidney Altman and Thomas R. Cech"for their discovery of catalytic properties of RNA"
1988Johann Deisenhofer, Robert Huber, and Hartmut Michel"for the determination of the three-dimensional structure of a photosynthetic reaction centre"
1987Donald J. Cram,
Jean-Marie Lehn, and Charles J. Pedersen
"for their development and use of molecules with structure-specific interactions of high selectivity"
1986Dudley R. Herschbach, Yuan T. Lee, and
John C. Polanyi
"for their contributions concerning the dynamics of chemical elementary processes"
1985Herbert A. Hauptman and Jerome Karle"for their outstanding achievements in the development of direct methods for the determination of crystal structures"
1984Bruce Merrifield"for his development of methodology for chemical synthesis on a solid matrix"
1983Henry Taube"for his work on the mechanisms of electron transfer reactions, especially in metal complexes"
1982Aaron Klug"for his development of crystallographic electron microscopy and his structural elucidation of biologically important nucleic acid-protein complexes"
1981Kenichi Fukui and
Roald Hoffmann
"for their theories, developed independently, concerning the course of chemical reactions"
1980Paul Berg"for his fundamental studies of the biochemistry of nucleic acids, with particular regard to recombinant-DNA"
1980Walter Gilbert and Frederick Sanger"for their contributions concerning the determination of base sequences in nucleic acids"
1979Herbert C. Brown and Georg Wittig"for their development of the use of boron- and phosphorus-containing compounds, respectively, into important reagents in organic synthesis"
1978Peter Mitchell"for his contribution to the understanding of biological energy transfer through the formulation of the chemiosmotic theory"
1977Ilya Prigogine"for his contributions to non-equilibrium thermodynamics, particularly the theory of dissipative structures"
1976William Lipscomb"for his studies on the structure of boranes illuminating problems of chemical bonding"
1975John Cornforth"for his work on the stereochemistry of enzyme-catalyzed reactions"
1975Vladimir Prelog"for his research into the stereochemistry of organic molecules and reactions"
1974Paul J. Flory"for his fundamental achievements, both theoretical and experimental, in the physical chemistry of the macromolecules"
1973Ernst Otto Fischer and Geoffrey Wilkinson"for their pioneering work, performed independently, on the chemistry of the organometallic, so called sandwich compounds"
1972Christian Anfinsen"for his work on ribonuclease, especially concerning the connection between the amino acid sequence and the biologically active conformation"
1972Stanford Moore and William H. Stein"for their contribution to the understanding of the connection between chemical structure and catalytic activity of the active centre of the ribonuclease molecule"
1971Gerhard Herzberg"for his contributions to the knowledge of electronic structure and geometry of molecules, particularly free radicals"
1970Luis Leloir"for his discovery of sugar nucleotides and their role in the biosynthesis of carbohydrates"
1969Derek Barton and
Odd Hassel
"for their contributions to the development of the concept of conformation and its application in chemistry"
1968Lars Onsager"for the discovery of the reciprocal relations bearing his name, which are fundamental for the thermodynamics of irreversible processes"
1967Manfred Eigen,
Ronald G.W. Norrish, and George Porter
"for their studies of extremely fast chemical reactions, effected by disturbing the equlibrium by means of very short pulses of energy"
1966Robert S. Mulliken"for his fundamental work concerning chemical bonds and the electronic structure of molecules by the molecular orbital method"
1965Robert B. Woodward"for his outstanding achievements in the art of organic synthesis"
1964Dorothy Crowfoot Hodgkin"for her determinations by X-ray techniques of the structures of important biochemical substances"
1963Karl Ziegler"for their discoveries in the field of the chemistry and technology of high polymers"
1962Max F. Perutz and
John C. Kendrew
"for their studies of the structures of globular proteins"
1961Melvin Calvin"for his research on the carbon dioxide assimilation in plants"
1960Willard F. Libby"for his method to use carbon-14 for age determination in archaeology, geology, geophysics, and other branches of science"
1959Jaroslav Heyrovsky"for his discovery and development of the polarographic methods of analysis"
1958Frederick Sanger"for his work on the structure of proteins, especially that of insulin"
1957Lord Todd"for his work on nucleotides and nucleotide co-enzymes"
1956Sir Cyril Hinshelwood and Nikolay Semenov"for their researches into the mechanism of chemical reactions"
1955Vincent du Vigneaud"for his work on biochemically important sulphur compounds, especially for the first synthesis of a polypeptide hormone"
1954Linus Pauling"for his research into the nature of the chemical bond and its application to the elucidation of the structure of complex substances"
1953Hermann Staudinger"for his discoveries in the field of macromolecular chemistry"
1952Archer J.P. Martin and Richard L.M. Synge"for their invention of partition chromatography"
1951Edwin M. McMillan and Glenn T. Seaborg"for their discoveries in the chemistry of the transuranium elements"
1950Otto Diels and Kurt Alder"for their discovery and development of the diene synthesis"
1949William F. Giauque"for his contributions in the field of chemical thermodynamics, particularly concerning the behaviour of substances at extremely low temperatures"
1948Arne Tiselius"for his research on electrophoresis and adsorption analysis, especially for his discoveries concerning the complex nature of the serum proteins"
1947Sir Robert Robinson"for his investigations on plant products of biological importance, especially the alkaloids"
1946James B. Sumner"for his discovery that enzymes can be crystallized"
1946John H. Northrop and Wendell M. Stanley"for their preparation of enzymes and virus proteins in a pure form"
1945Artturi Virtanen"for his research and inventions in agricultural and nutrition chemistry, especially for his fodder preservation method"
1944Otto Hahn"for his discovery of the fission of heavy nuclei"
1943George de Hevesy"for his work on the use of isotopes as tracers in the study of chemical processes"
1942The prize money was with 1/3 allocated to the Main Fund and with 2/3 to the Special Fund of this prize section
1941The prize money was with 1/3 allocated to the Main Fund and with 2/3 to the Special Fund of this prize section
1940The prize money was with 1/3 allocated to the Main Fund and with 2/3 to the Special Fund of this prize section
1939Adolf Butenandt"for his work on sex hormones"
1939Leopold Ruzicka"for his work on polymethylenes and higher terpenes"
1938Richard Kuhn"for his work on carotenoids and vitamins"
1937Norman Haworth"for his investigations on carbohydrates and vitamin C"
1937Paul Karrer"for his investigations on carotenoids, flavins and vitamins A and B2"
1936Peter Debye"for his contributions to our knowledge of molecular structure through his investigations on dipole moments and on the diffraction of X-rays and electrons in gases"
1935Frédéric Joliot and
Irène Joliot-Curie
"in recognition of their synthesis of new radioactive elements"
1934Harold C. Urey"for his discovery of heavy hydrogen"
1933The prize money was with 1/3 allocated to the Main Fund and with 2/3 to the Special Fund of this prize section
1932Irving Langmuir"for his discoveries and investigations in surface chemistry"
1931Carl Bosch and
Friedrich Bergius
"in recognition of their contributions to the invention and development of chemical high pressure methods"
1930Hans Fischer"for his researches into the constitution of haemin and chlorophyll and especially for his synthesis of haemin"
1929Arthur Harden and
Hans von Euler-Chelpin
"for their investigations on the fermentation of sugar and fermentative enzymes"
1928Adolf Windaus"for the services rendered through his research into the constitution of the sterols and their connection with the vitamins"
1927Heinrich Wieland"for his investigations of the constitution of the bile acids and related substances"
1926The Svedberg"for his work on disperse systems"
1925Richard Zsigmondy"for his demonstration of the heterogenous nature of colloid solutions and for the methods he used, which have since become fundamental in modern colloid chemistry"
1924The prize money was allocated to the Special Fund of this prize section
1923Fritz Pregl"for his invention of the method of micro-analysis of organic substances"
1922Francis W. Aston"for his discovery, by means of his mass spectrograph, of isotopes, in a large number of non-radioactive elements, and for his enunciation of the whole-number rule"
1921Frederick Soddy"for his contributions to our knowledge of the chemistry of radioactive substances, and his investigations into the origin and nature of isotopes"
1920Walther Nernst"in recognition of his work in thermochemistry"
1919The prize money was allocated to the Special Fund of this prize section
1918Fritz Haber"for the synthesis of ammonia from its elements"
1917The prize money was allocated to the Special Fund of this prize section
1916The prize money was allocated to the Special Fund of this prize section
1915Richard Willstätter"for his researches on plant pigments, especially chlorophyll"
1914Theodore W. Richards"in recognition of his accurate determinations of the atomic weight of a large number of chemical elements"
1913Alfred Werner"in recognition of his work on the linkage of atoms in molecules by which he has thrown new light on earlier investigations and opened up new fields of research especially in inorganic chemistry"
1912Victor Grignard"for the discovery of the so-called Grignard reagent, which in recent years has greatly advanced the progress of organic chemistry"
1912Paul Sabatier"for his method of hydrogenating organic compounds in the presence of finely disintegrated metals whereby the progress of organic chemistry has been greatly advanced in recent years"
1911Marie Curie"in recognition of her services to the advancement of chemistry by the discovery of the elements radium and polonium, by the isolation of radium and the study of the nature and compounds of this remarkable element"
1910Otto Wallach"in recognition of his services to organic chemistry and the chemical industry by his pioneer work in the field of alicyclic compounds"
1909Wilhelm Ostwald"in recognition of his work on catalysis and for his investigations into the fundamental principles governing chemical equilibria and rates of reaction"
1908Ernest Rutherford"for his investigations into the disintegration of the elements, and the chemistry of radioactive substances"
1907Eduard Buchner"for his biochemical researches and his discovery of cell-free fermentation"
1906Henri Moissan"in recognition of the great services rendered by him in his investigation and isolation of the element fluorine, and for the adoption in the service of science of the electric furnace called after him"
1905Adolf von Baeyer"in recognition of his services in the advancement of organic chemistry and the chemical industry, through his work on organic dyes and hydroaromatic compounds"
1904Sir William Ramsay"in recognition of his services in the discovery of the inert gaseous elements in air, and his determination of their place in the periodic system"
1903Svante Arrhenius"in recognition of the extraordinary services he has rendered to the advancement of chemistry by his electrolytic theory of dissociation"


1902Emil Fischer"in recognition of the extraordinary services he has rendered by his work on sugar and purine syntheses"
1901Jacobus H. van 't Hoff"in recognition of the extraordinary services he has rendered by the discovery of the laws of chemical dynamics and osmotic pressure in solutions">
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