Famous Canadian Chemists

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

Vote for Your Favourite Canadian Chemists

 1 
Louis Slotin
(Physicist)

Louis Slotin
4
Birthdate: December 1, 1910
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Winnipeg, Canada
Died: May 30, 1946
While showing his colleagues how to work on a plutonium bomb, Canadian scientist Louis Slotin was exposed to a lethal radioactive dose that first caused him to vomit and then die 9 days later. He had, however, reportedly shielded his colleagues from maximum exposure, thus saving their lives.

 2 
Herbert Henry Dow
(Industrialist)

Herbert Henry Dow
3
Birthdate: February 26, 1866
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Belleville, Canada
Died: October 15, 1930

Herbert Henry Dow taught chemistry before venturing into a business career. Though his first company was a failure, his work impressed investors, and he was soon able to establish Dow Chemical, which supplied low-cost bromine to the US markets. He later made auto pistons out of spare magnesium.

 3 

Rudolph A. Marcus
3
Birthdate: July 21, 1923
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Montreal, Canada

Rudolph A. Marcus redefined science with his Marcus theory, which explained electron transfer reactions and thus threw light on reactions such as photosynthesis. The Canadian-American chemist won a Nobel Prize for his work and also contributed to the transition-state theory. He now teaches at Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University.

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 4 
John Polanyi
(Chemist)

John Polanyi
2
Birthdate: January 23, 1929
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Berlin, Germany

John Charles Polanyi is a Hungarian-Canadian scientist, who won the Noble Prize in Chemistry for his contribution to the dynamics of chemical reaction. He developed a technique called infrared chemiluminescence, which helped him to study the exchange of chemical bonds and detail how the excess energy is removed during chemical reactions.

 5 
Gerhard Herzberg
(Physical Chemist, Physicist)

Gerhard Herzberg
2
Birthdate: December 25, 1904
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Hamburg, Imperial Germany
Died: March 3, 1999

German-Canadian physicist Gerhard Herzberg is remembered for his Nobel Prize-winning work on ascertaining the electronic structure of molecules, particularly free radicals. He had escaped to Canada following the rise of the Nazis and later also worked in the U.S. His doctoral students included Japanese chemist Takeshi Oka.

 6 
Henry Taube
(Chemist)

Henry Taube
2
Birthdate: November 30, 1915
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Neudorf, Saskatchewan, Canada
Died: November 16, 2005

Nobel Prize-winning Canadian-American chemist Henry Taube is best remembered for his research on electron-transfer reactions. Apart from teaching at reputed institutes such as Cornell and Stanford, Taube also became a member of the National Academy of Sciences. He was also an ardent fan of classical music and loved gardening, too.

 7 
Ronald Gillespie
(Chemist, University teacher)

Ronald Gillespie
0
Birthdate: August 21, 1924
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: London, United Kingdom
Died: February 26, 2021
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 8 

William Giauque
1
Birthdate: May 12, 1895
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Niagara Falls, Canada
Died: March 28, 1982
Initially aspiring to be an electrical engineer, William Giauque later deviated to chemical engineering and then shifted further to research.The Nobel Prize-winning Canadian-American physical chemist is best remembered for his research on the behavior of matter in extremely low temperatures. His studies validated the third law of thermodynamics.

 9 
Martin Kamen
(Chemist)

Martin Kamen
1
Birthdate: August 27, 1913
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Toronto, Canada
Died: August 31, 2002

Canadian-American physical chemist Martin Kamen was part of the team that discovered the synthesis of the isotope carbon-14. He was accused of revealing sensitive information to Russian spies while working at the Manhattan Project at Oak Ridge, and was thus fired from the Radiological Laboratory of the University of California, Berkeley.

 10 
Arthur Carty
(Chemist)

Arthur Carty
0
Birthdate: September 12, 1940
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Rowlands Gill, Gateshead, England