The autobiography of a Nobel Prize winner, this book tells us about George Olah's fascinating research into extremely strong superacids and how it yielded the common term "magic acids." Olah guides us through his long and remarkable journey, from Budapest to Cleveland to Los Angeles, with a stopover in Stockholm. This updated autobiography of a Nobel Prize winner George A. Olah: * Chronicles the distinguished career of a chemist whose work in a broad range of chemistry areas, and most notably that in methane chemistry, led to technologies that impact the processing and utility of alternative fuels * Is based on Olah's work on extremely strong superacids and how they yielded the common term, "magic acids" * Details events since the publication of the first edition in 2000 * Inspires readers with details on Dr. Olah's successful recent research on methanol, intended to help provide a solution to "the oil problem"
GEORGE A. OLAH, PhD, was awarded the undivided 1994 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. He is the Founding Director of the Loker Hydrocarbon Research Institute and a Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles. Thomas Mathew, PhD, is a Senior Scientist and long-time close associate of Professor George A. Olah at the Loker Hydrocarbon Research Institute.
Preface ix Chapter 1 Introduction 1 Chapter 2 Perspectives on Science 4 Chapter 3 Chemistry: The Multifaceted Central Science 21 Chapter 4 Growing Up in Hungary and Turning to Chemistry 38 Chapter 5 Early Research and Teaching: Departing the Shadow of Emil Fischer 51 Chapter 6 Move to North America: Industrial Experience While Pursuing the Elusive Cations of Carbon 64 Chapter 7 Return to Academia The Cleveland Years: Carbocations, Magic Acid, and Superacid Chemistry 84 Chapter 8 Moving to Los Angeles: Hydrocarbon Research and Building the Loker Institute 108 Chapter 9 The Nonclassical Ion Controversy and Its Significance 137 Chapter 10 From Kekul'e s Four-Valent Carbon to Five- and Higher Coordinate Hypercarbon Chemistry 154 Chapter 11 The Nobel Prize: Learning to Live with It and Not Rest on Laurels 170 Chapter 12 Research in Post-Nobel Years: From Superacids to Superelectrophiles 189 Chapter 13 Renewable Carbon Chemistry: Anthropogenic Chemical Cycle with CO2 Capture and Recycling to Methanol 206 Chapter 14 Rendering Methanol, A Renewable Carbon Source and Fuel: Direct and Regenerative Methanol Fuel Cell 225 Chapter 15 The Concept and Development of the Methanol Economy 242 Chapter 16 Gone My Way 254 Chapter 17 Concluding Remarks 294 Appendix My Previous Books for References and Additional Reading 297 Curriculum Vitae of George Andrew Olah 300 Index 306