Henry Taube
Henry Taube

Celebrity Profile

Name: Henry Taube
Occupation: Chemist
Gender: Male
Birth Day: November 30, 1915
Death Date: Nov 16, 2005 (age 89)
Age: Aged 89
Country: Canada
Zodiac Sign: Sagittarius

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Weight: in kg - N/A
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Henry Taube

Henry Taube was born on November 30, 1915 in Canada (89 years old). Henry Taube is a Chemist, zodiac sign: Sagittarius. Find out Henry Taubenet worth 2020, salary 2020 detail bellow.

Brief Info

Canadian-born American chemist who won the Nobel Prize in that field in 1983 for his research into the mechanisms of electron-transfer reactions. Henry Taube's book, Electron Transfer Reactions of Complex Ions in Solution, was published in 1970.


Henry Taube was the first Canadian-born chemist to win the Nobel Prize.

Does Henry Taube Dead or Alive?

As per our current Database, Henry Taube died on Nov 16, 2005 (age 89).

Net Worth

Net Worth 2020


Salary 2020

Not known

Before Fame

Henry Taube obtained a Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley in 1940.

Biography Timeline


At 12, Taube left his hometown and moved to Regina to attend Luther College where he completed high school. After graduating, Taube stayed at Luther College and worked as laboratory assistant for Paul Liefeld, allowing him to take first year university classes. Taube attended the University of Saskatchewan, receiving his B.Sc. in 1935 and his M.Sc in 1937. His thesis advisor at the University of Saskatchewan was John Spinks. While at the University of Saskatchewan, Taube studied with Gerhard Herzberg, who would be awarded the 1971 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. He moved to University of California, Berkeley, where he completed his Ph.D studies in 1940. His Ph.D mentor was William Bray. Taube's graduate research focused on the photodecomposition of chlorine dioxide and hydrogen peroxide in solution.


After completing his graduate studies, Taube became a naturalized citizen of the United States in 1942. Taube married his wife, Mary in 1952. They had three children, Karl, Heinrich and Linda. His stepdaughter, Marianna died of cancer in 1998. When he stopped his active research projects in 2001, Taube continued to be available as a reviewer and consultant, but his main goal was "enjoying life". Away from chemistry, Taube had varied interests including gardening and classical music, mainly opera. In 2003 he was one of 22 Nobel Laureates who signed the Humanist Manifesto.


Taube's interest in coordination chemistry was sparked when he was chosen to develop a course on advanced inorganic chemistry while at the University of Chicago. He was unable to find much information in the textbooks available at the time. Taube realized that his work on the substitution of carbon in organic reactions could be related to inorganic complexes. In 1952, Taube published a key paper relating the rates of chemical reactions to electronic structure in Chemical Reviews. This research was the first to recognize the correlation between the rate of ligand substitution and the d-electron configuration of the metal. Taube's key discovery was the way molecules build a type of "chemical bridge" rather than simply exchanging electrons, as previously thought. Identifying this intermediate step explained why reactions between similar metals and ions occurred at different rates. His paper in Chemical Reviews was developed while on sabbatical in the late 1940s. An article in Science called this paper "one of the true classics in inorganic chemistry" after his Nobel Prize was announced. Taube researched ruthenium and osmium, both elements have a high capacity for back bonding. This type of electron donation was key when studying the way electrons are transferred between molecules in a chemical reaction.

When looking back on his research, Taube explained that he sometimes had difficulty finding graduate students willing to work on electron transfer reactions, as they preferred to work on more "exciting" projects in his laboratory focusing on the effects of isotopic tracers and kinetics. Taube felt that a "primary flaw" with his correlation between electron configuration and ligand substitution was that it was described mainly in terms of valence bond theory, as crystal field theory and ligand field theory were not well established when he published his work in 1952.


Taube's initial research at Cornell University focused on the same areas he studied as a graduate student, oxidizing agents containing oxygen and halogens, and redox reactions featuring these species. He used isotopically labeled oxygen-18 and radioactive chlorine to study these reactions. He was recognized by the American Chemical Society in 1955 for his isotope studies.


Taube was accepted as a member of the National Academy of Sciences in 1959. President Jimmy Carter presented Taube with the 1976 President's National Medal of Science "in recognition of contributions to the understanding of reactivity and reaction mechanisms in inorganic chemistry." In 1985, Taube received the American Chemical Society's highest honor, the Priestley Medal, which is awarded to recognize "distinguished services to chemistry". He was awarded Guggenheim Fellowships in 1949 and 1955. In 1965, he received the Golden Plate Award of the American Academy of Achievement. Taube was made an honorary member of the College of Chemists of Catalonia and Beleares (1984), the Canadian Society of Chemists (1986), and the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (1988). He was also awarded an honorary fellowship in the Royal Society of Chemistry (1989) and the Indian Chemical Society (1989) and elected a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) in 1988. Taube received honorary degrees from many institutions, including the University of Saskatchewan (1973), the University of Chicago (1983), the Polytechnic Institute of New York (1984), the State University of New York Stony Brook (1985), the University of Guelph (1987), Seton Hall University (1988), the Lajos Kossuth University of Debrecen in Hungary (1988) and Northwestern University (1990). A Nobel Laureate Plaza on the University of Saskatchewan's campus in honour of Taube and Gerhard Herzberg was dedicated in 1997.


In 1981, Taube became a founding member of the World Cultural Council. As of 1997, Taube had over 600 publications, and had worked with over 250 students. He published a book, Electron Transfer Reactions of Complex Ions in Solution (Current Chemical Concepts) in 1970. His students have had faculty positions at many prestigious universities, including Cornell, Rutgers, Georgetown and Georgia Tech. Together with graduate student Carol Creutz, he is the namesake of the Creutz-Taube complex, a metal complex with the formula [Ru(NH3)5]2(C4H4N2). His research contributions have been honored in several ways, including a symposium at the 1982 annual American Chemical Society meeting. The annual series Progress in Inorganic Chemistry dedicated its 30th volume to Taube, entitled "An Appreciation of Henry Taube." Luther College in Regina, Saskatchewan offers an annual scholarship to an entering science student in honour of Taube and his science teacher, Paul Liefeld. A seminar series was created in honor of his work at Stanford. Taube gave the inaugural lecture in the series.


Taube was awarded the 1983 Nobel Prize in Chemistry "for his work on the mechanisms of electron transfer reactions, especially in metal complexes." He received his award on December 8, 1983, with the presentation speech being delivered by Ingvar Lindqvist of the Swedish Royal Academy of Sciences. Taube's Nobel Lecture was entitled "Electron Transfer between Metal Complexes - Retrospective." His Nobel Prize was the second awarded to a Canadian-born chemist (the first one was William Giauque). His initial paper in Chemical Reviews was 30 years old at the time of his Nobel Prize victory, but the correlation he described between the rate of ligand substitution and electronic configuration for transition metal coordination complexes was still the predominant theory about the reaction chemistry of these compounds. After being awarded the Nobel Prize, Taube noticed a side benefit to the prestigious award - his students paid better attention in class.


After completing his education, Taube remained in the United States, becoming an instructor in chemistry at Berkeley until 1941. He initially wanted to return to Canada to work, but did not receive a response when he applied for jobs at the major Canadian universities. From Berkeley, he served as an instructor and assistant professor at Cornell University until 1946. During World War II, Taube served on the National Defense Research Committee. Taube spent time at the University of Chicago as an assistant professor, associate professor and as a full professor from 1946–61. He served as chair of the chemistry department in Chicago from 1956–59, but did not enjoy administrative work. After leaving Chicago, Taube worked as a professor at Stanford University until 1986, a position that allowed him to focus on research, while also teaching classes at the undergraduate and graduate levels. He became a Professor Emeritus at Stanford in 1986, but he continued to perform research until 2001, and visited his labs every day until his death in 2005. In addition to his academic duties, Taube also served as a consultant at Los Alamos National Laboratory from 1956 until the 1970s.


Henry Taube died in his home in Palo Alto, California on November 16, 2005, at the age of 89.

Family Life

Henry Taube had three children with his wife Mary.

🎂 Upcoming Birthday

Currently, Henry Taube is 105 years, 3 months and 7 days old. Henry Taube will celebrate 106th birthday on a Tuesday 30th of November 2021. Below we countdown to Henry Taube upcoming birthday.


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