Eigen, Manfred

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Manfred Eigen, 1927–, German biophysicist, Ph.D. Univ. of Göttingen, 1951. Eigen was on the faculty at the Univ. of Göttingen from 1951 to 1953. He joined the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in 1953 and still has an emeritus appointment there. Eigen received the 1967 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Ronald Norrish and George Porter for their studies of extremely fast chemical reactions induced in response to very short pulses of energy. Eigen used high-frequency sound waves to produce disturbances in a chemical system and thereby measure rates of reactions in the range of a billionth to a thousandth of a second. This so-called relaxation technique has been used to study enzyme-catalyzed reactions and the coding of biological information.