Kohn , Walter
(1923–) Austrian–American theoretical chemist
Kohn was born in Vienna. From 1950 to 1960, he was professor at the Carnegie Institute of Technology in Pittsburgh, USA. He then joined the University of California in San Diego, remaining there until 1979 when he became director of the Institute of Theoretical Physics in Santa Barbara. He gave up that appointment in 1984, although he is still active at the Institute. In 1998 Kohn shared the Nobel Prize for chemistry with John Pople. Kohn received his award for his development of density-functional theory in quantum chemistry, for which he used powerful computer techniques.
Quantum chemistry – the solving of chemical problems using quantum mechanics – began to expand in the 1960s when computers became available to do the calculations. Kohn had already shown in 1964 that, for a system described by quantum mechanics, the total energy can be calculated if the electron density (distribution of electrons) is known. His later work concerned the simplification of the mathematics needed to describe the bonding in atoms and in mapping chemical reactions. He demonstrated that it is not necessary to be able to describe the motion of each individual electron in a molecule; it is sufficient to know the average number of electrons located at a particular point in space. The resulting density-functional theory is simpler to analyze using a computer, and can be employed for very large biologically important molecules.

Scientists. . 2011.

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  • KOHN, WALTER — (1923– ), U.S. physicist and Nobel laureate. Kohn was born in Vienna where he attended the Akademische Gymnasium. He moved to the Jewish Chajes Gymnasium where he received exceptional teaching in mathematics from Dr. Victor Sabbath and in physics …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Kohn, Walter — ▪ American physicist born March 9, 1923, Vienna, Austria       Austrian born American physicist who, with John A. Pople (Pople, Sir John A.), received the 1998 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. The award recognized their individual work on computations… …   Universalium

  • Kohn — Walter …   Scientists

  • Walter Kohn — en 2006 Naissance 19 mars 1923 Vienne (Autriche) Nationalité …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Kohn — Kohn,   Walter, amerikanischer Chemiker österreichischer Herkunft, * Wien 9. 3. 1923; 1950 60 Professor in Pittsburgh, danach bis 1979 in San Diego, 1979 84 Direktor des Instituts für theoretische Physik in Santa Barbara. Kohn erhielt für seine… …   Universal-Lexikon

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  • Kohn — ist ein jüdischer Nachname und der Familienname folgender Personen: Alfred Kohn (1867–1959), tschechischer Medizinwissenschaftler Alfred Kohn, Pseudonym Karl Alfredy (1877– nach 1935), deutscher Kapellmeister und Komponist Angela Kohn, bekannt… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Kohn — is a surname, which may refer to: People * Alfie Kohn, American lecturer and author * Dan Kohn Sherbock, Jewish theologian * David Kohn, Russian archaeologist * Donald Kohn, economist * Fritz Nathan Kohn, later Kortner, Austrian born stage and… …   Wikipedia

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