Sir Eric Rideal

E. Rideal

Sir Eric Rideal

Sir Eric Rideal who was one of the founders of catal­y­sis in Great Britain and who was the eponym of the famous Eley Rideal mech­a­nism. Pro­fes­sor E. Rideal was famous for the work of the Col­loid Sci­ence Lab­o­ra­tory which he set up in Cam­bridge Uni­ver­sity in the 1930s. He was born in 1890 and was first involved in sur­face chem­istry dur­ing the First World War when, with
H.S. Tay­lor, he worked on cat­a­lysts for the Haber process for the pro­duc­tion of ammo­nia from nitro­gen and hydro­gen, and for the selec­tive oxi­da­tion of car­bon monox­ide in mix­tures of CO and hydro­gen. Later Tay­lor and Rideal wrote a pio­neer­ing book Catal­y­sis in The­ory and Prac­tice. The Rideal Con­fer­ence is so named in his honor; this tri­en­nial series of UK research con­fer­ences on sur­face chem­istry and catal­y­sis was ini­ti­ated by Charles Kem­ball and oth­ers in the late 1960s.
 
Con­tributed by Jacques Vedrine
June 2002