Monday, September 8, 2008

Au Revoir, friend of the Bastard

Just read an obituary for Neil Bartlett. I didn't know Neil that well, but I knew a lot of his close friends, and went to a few of his lectures. Amazing guy, even though he lived in Canada and the US for 50-odd years he maintained this very crisp British accent. I distinctly remember him giving a lecture in Honolulu on gold fluorides on a very nice summers day and there was nobody there - it was well into the beach/drinking/sightseeing time of the afternoon. Still, there he was racing through a talk on complex chemistry for a room that had about five people in it (one was a fellow noble-gas chemist who was completely asleep).

Neil Bartlett, taking the noble out of noble gases by making Xe[PtF6], XeF2, XeF4 and XeF6 - 1932-2008

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