F. Sherwood Rowland
Nobel Laureate F. Sherwood Rowland has donated his extensive collection of research and professional files to the UCI Libraries. Rowland won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1995, along with Mario Molina of MIT and Paul Crutzen of the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry in Mainz, Germany, for illustrating how sensitive the ozone layer is to man-made emissions.
"This significant acquisition for the UCI Libraries will support a variety of research, particularly for those seeking a better understanding of how Rowland’s work prevented a potentially catastrophic environmental problem," said Mitchell Brown, Research Librarian for Chemistry and Earth System Science. The papers document Rowland’s extensive career, and provide a window into his numerous speaking presentations, pivotal scientific research, service on the National Academy of Sciences, and sense of humor. Of particular interest are materials that reveal his activism to prevent man-made harm to the earth’s atmosphere, especially after the growing hole in the ozone layer captured the popular imagination.Of particular interest are materials that reveal his activism to prevent man-made harm to the earth’s atmosphere.
Rowland and Molina first published their research in Nature magazine in 1974. They theorized that chlorofluorocarbons – such as those in aerosol cans, refrigerators, or some plastic foams – lead to the destruction of ozone molecules in our atmosphere. The National Academy of Sciences concurred with their findings in 1976, and in 1978 CFC-based aerosols were banned in the United States. The Nobel Foundation noted that they "contributed to our salvation from a global environmental problem that could have catastrophic consequences."
Rowland came to UCI in 1964 as the first chair of the Department of Chemistry. He now serves as the Donald Bren Professor of Chemistry and Research Professor in Earth Science.
The papers are housed in Special Collections and Archives. The initial installment contains almost 150 boxes, and more is promised. The papers are not yet available for research, and the Libraries are actively seeking funding to organize, preserve, and make them available. Contact Michelle Light, Acting Head of Special Collections and Archives, at email@example.com or 949.824.7193 for more information about the papers or Jenny Oenning, Director of Development, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 949.824.9339 to help make this rich resource available to researchers.
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