Furness, Vera (1921–2002)

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Furness, Vera (1921–2002)

English chemist and industrial manager. Name variations: V.I. or Vera I. Furness. Born June 2, 1921; died 2002 in Limavady, near Londonderry, Northern Ireland; London University, BS, 1946, MS, 1948, and PhD, 1952.

Employed as development chemist at BX Plastics in Walthamstow as an MA student; worked as research associate and part-time lecturer at Birmingham Technical College (now University of Aston) while doing doctoral research on reactions of hexomethylenetetramine with phenols and dialkylanilines; at Courtaulds in Coventry (1953–81), worked as research chemist (1953–62), Research Division general manager (1970–76), head of Acetate and Synthetic Fibres Laboratory (1964–69), and chair of Steel Cords Ltd. (1976–78); worked to produce Courtelle, an acrylic; visited China, Poland, and Soviet Union to explain technical construction and process of acrylic plants; contributed improvements to production of synthetic fiber that made Courtaulds the most efficient acrylic process in the world. Made Officer of the Order of the British Empire (1971).