Chemistry

George Olah, USC scientist who won Nobel Prize in chemistry, dies at 89

George Olah, USC scientist who won Nobel Prize in chemistry, dies at 89

George Olah, a USC chemist and Nobel laureate who found new ways to study previously imperceptible stages in hydrocarbon-related chemical reactions, has died at his Beverly Hills home at age 89.

The Hungarian-born scientist’s research, which earned USC its first Nobel in 1994, fueled the advancement of cleaner-burning gasoline, improved oil refining and even led to the creation of new drugs.

“George Olah is one of the greatest chemists of the last century and this century,” said Surya Prakash, a USC organic chemist and Olah’s former graduate student who became his collaborator for about 43 years.

Olah, remembered as a giant in his field, studied carbocations:...

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