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Isabella Karle

KARLE, Isabella, American physical chemist, b-1922. Graduated with a PhD from Michigan in 1944.  Her husband was Jerome Karle, a Chemistry Nobel Prize winner (1985). Isabella specialised in chemical analysis using electron-diffraction, she invented some equipment concerning this methodology. Her husband was very theoretically inclined, so she learned x-ray crystallography techniques in order to test his theories. It was essential that the wavelength of x-rays used was similar to the intervals between the atoms being examined. Isabella’s improvements in methods of measurement are now the basis of automated x-ray crystallography. She also introduced a unique 3-D model creation process. Throughout a long career at the US Naval Research Laboratories she has elucidated the precise molecular structure of a great many significant biochemicals using her inventive approaches. Awarded the National Medal of Science in 1995.

Physical Chemist Inventor

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