Title and Description Page
Family and Education 1
Interest in chemistry begins during secondary school in Alberta, where advanced courses are available. Attends the University of Alberta and becomes interested in organic chemistry and is mentored by Reuben B. Sandin. On Sandin's recommendation, pursues graduate work at the University of Illinois. Introduced to industrial chemistry through summer employment at DuPont.
Research Chemist at General Electric 11
Recruited from Illinois by John Elliott. Given tremendous freedom and independence. Works on oxidation of xylenes and with phthalic acids. Misses out on patent opportunity. Research on oxidation of phenols and xylenol leads to synthesis of PPO. Controversy in Pittsfield over whether any resources should be shifted from polycarbonates to PPO. Attempts to synthesize completely aromatic polymer lead to polymerization of cylcohexanone (P3O). PPO plant built, but manufactured products not successful. Discovery that PPO and polystyrene are miscible leads to rubber toughened blend? Noryl.
Manager at General Electric 38
Discovery of polyformals. Interaction with academia. Various consultants. Lack of presence of polymers in most college chemistry curricula. Development of Ultem. Very little interaction with corporate competitors. Currently trying to develop high performance composites for military applications and sports equipment. Maintains identity as organic chemist, not merely polymer specialist.