Skip to main content

Kroto, Sir Harold Walter

KROTO, SIR HAROLD WALTER

KROTO, SIR HAROLD WALTER (1939– ), U.K. chemist and Nobel laureate. He was born in Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, the son of refugees from Nazi Germany. When he was one year old, his family moved to Bolton, Lancashire, where he was educated at Bolton School. He graduated with a B.Sc. (1961) from the University of Sheffield where he also gained his Ph.D. with a thesis on the spectroscopy of free radicals under the supervision of Richard Dixon (1964). After postdoctoral research with the National Research Council of Canada in Ottawa (1964–66) and Bell Laboratories, Murray Hill, New Jersey (1966–67), he joined the department of chemistry of the University of Sussex where he became professor (1985–91) and Royal Society Research Professor (1991). He later worked in the department of physics, chemistry, and environmental science of the University of Sussex. His main research interest was spectroscopy and its application to the study of carbon molecules in many research areas. He and his colleagues founded the field of fullerene science after their discovery that some carbon molecules (C60) self-assemble spontaneously at high temperatures into spheres resembling the Geodisic Dome designed by Buckminster Fuller. The crucial collaborative work was completed over ten days in 1985. The appearance and symmetrical composition of these macromolecules are aesthetically appealing to organic chemists and laymen alike. His later research involved the rapidly expanding field of fullerenes, radioastronomy, the evolution of carbon-based molecules, and the implications for virology, biological systems, and the origins of life on Earth and possibly elsewhere in the universe. Kroto was awarded the Nobel Prize in chemistry (1996) with Robert Curl and Richard Smalley. Subsequently Kroto and his colleagues established the University of Sussex as a major center in the growing field of nanotechnology that seeks to analyze and simulate the micro-architecture of biological structures. Kroto had a deep interest in science education in schools and universities and was the founding co-chairperson of the Vega Trust, a non-profit organization for producing programs for scientific education. His many honors included election to the Royal Society of London, the Longstaff Medal of the Royal Society of Chemistry (1993), the Royal Society's Copley Medal (2004), and a knighthood. Krota also had a great interest in graphic design and his awards in this field included winner of the Sunday Times book jacket design competition (1994) and the Louis Vuitton Science pour l'Art Prize (1994). Krota was a humanist and a strong supporter of human rights and organizations such as Amnesty International.

[Michael Denman (2nd ed.)]

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Kroto, Sir Harold Walter." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . Encyclopedia.com. 21 May. 2019 <https://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Kroto, Sir Harold Walter." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 21, 2019). https://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/kroto-sir-harold-walter

"Kroto, Sir Harold Walter." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . Retrieved May 21, 2019 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/kroto-sir-harold-walter

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.