A. David Buckingham

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

A. David Buckingham

Born(1930-01-28)28 January 1930
Sydney, Australia
Died4 February 2021(2021-02-04) (aged 91)
Cambridge, England[1]
Alma materCambridge University
Known forTheory of electric, magnetic and optical properties of molecules
Theory of intermolecular forces
SpouseJillian Bowles
AwardsAhmed Zewail Prize in Molecular Sciences (2006)
Scientific career
FieldsTheoretical chemistry
Chemical physics
InstitutionsOxford University
University of Bristol
Cambridge University
Doctoral advisorJohn Pople
Notable studentsLaurence D. Barron
Brian Orr

Amyand David Buckingham CBE FRS FAA (28 January 1930 – 4 February 2021) born in Pymble, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia was a chemist, with primary expertise in chemical physics.[2][3][4]

Life and career[edit]

David Buckingham obtained a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science, under Professor Raymond Le Fevre,[5] from the University of Sydney and a PhD from the University of Cambridge supervised by John Pople.[6] He was an 1851 Exhibition Senior Student in the Physical Chemistry Laboratory at the University of Oxford from 1955 to 1957, Lecturer and then Student (Fellow) at Christ Church, Oxford from 1955 to 1965 and University Lecturer in the Inorganic Chemistry Laboratory from 1958 to 1965. He was Professor of Theoretical Chemistry at the University of Bristol from 1965 to 1969. He was appointed Professor of Chemistry at the University of Cambridge in 1969.

He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1975,[7] a Fellow of the American Physical Society in 1986 and a Foreign Associate of the United States National Academy of Sciences in 1992. He was a member of the International Academy of Quantum Molecular Science.[8] Buckingham was elected to the Australian Academy of Science in 2008 as a Corresponding Fellow.

He was awarded the first Ahmed Zewail Prize in Molecular Sciences[9] for pioneering contributions to the molecular sciences in 2006.

He won the Harrie Massey Medal and Prize in 1995.

He also played 10 first class cricket matches for Cambridge University and Free Foresters between 1955 and 1960, scoring 349 runs including two half-centuries at an average of 18.36.[10] He was President of Cambridge University Cricket Club between 1990 and 2009.[11]

Professor Buckingham finished his career as Emeritus Professor of Chemistry at the University of Cambridge, United Kingdom and Emeritus Fellow at Pembroke College, Cambridge.

Scientific contributions[edit]

Professor Buckingham's research has focussed on the measurement and understanding of the electric, magnetic and optical properties of molecules; as well as on the theory of intermolecular forces.

Initially he worked on dielectric properties of liquids, such as dipole moments of molecules in both solution and gas phases. He developed the theory of the interaction of molecules in liquids and gases with external electric and magnetic fields. In 1959, he proposed a direct method of measurement of molecular quadrupole moments of molecules (measured in buckinghams),[12] which he demonstrated experimentally in 1963 on the carbon dioxide molecule.[13] In 1960, he developed theories of solvent effects on nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectra and vibrational spectra of molecules.[14][15] In 1962 he considered the effect on NMR spectra of molecular orientation in a strong electric field, and developed a method to determine the absolute sign of the spin-spin coupling constant.[16] In 1968, he determined the first accurate values of hyperpolarizability using the Kerr effect.[17] In 1971 Buckingham and Laurence Barron pioneered the study of Raman optical activity, due to differences in the Raman scattering of left and right-polarized light by chiral molecules.[18]

In the 1980s, he showed the importance of long-range intermolecular forces in determining the structure and properties of small molecule clusters, with particular applications in biological macromolecules. In 1990 he predicted the linear effect of an electric field on the reflection of light at interfaces.[19] In 1995, he proved that the sum of the rotational strengths of all vibrational transitions from the ground state of a chiral molecule is zero.[20]

Personal life[edit]

In July 1964, David Buckingham sailed from Southampton to Montréal, to take up a research post in Ottawa. On the voyage he met Jillian Bowles, a physiotherapist who was heading to a post in British Columbia. They were engaged in January 1965 and married at Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford six months later. They were married for over 55 years, and had three children: Lucy Elliot and Mark Vincent, born in Bristol, and Alice Susan born in Cambridge. Between them they had eight grandchildren: Carola, Peter, Oliver, William, Patrick, Anna, Samuel and Maeve.

David Buckingham died in Cambridge on 4 February 2021, seven days after his 91st birthday; he was survived by Jill, their children and grandchildren.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "England / Players / David Buckingham". ESPN cricinfo. Retrieved 8 March 2021.
  2. ^ Anon (1996). "Amyand David Buckingham". Molecular Physics. 87 (4): 711–724. Bibcode:1996MolPh..87..711.. doi:10.1080/00268979600100491.
  3. ^ "A. David Buckingham 1930 - 2021".
  4. ^ "David Buckingham - Biography". The Royal Society. Retrieved 10 February 2021. Professor David Buckingham CBE FRS died on 4 February 2021.
  5. ^ Aroney, M. J.; Buckingham, A. D. (1988). "Raymond James Wood Le Fèvre. 1 April 1905-26 August 1986". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society. 34: 374. doi:10.1098/rsbm.1988.0014.
  6. ^ Buckingham, A. D. (2006). "Sir John Anthony Pople. 31 October 1925 -- 15 March 2004: Elected FRS 1961". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society. 52: 299–310. doi:10.1098/rsbm.2006.0021. S2CID 68810170.
  7. ^ Clary, David C.; Orr, Brian J. (2022). "Amyand David Buckingham. 28 January 1930—4 February 2021". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society. 72: 77–99. doi:10.1098/rsbm.2021.0026. S2CID 244923085.
  8. ^ "A. David Buckingham: International Academy of Quantum Molecular Science". Archived from the original on 20 February 2012.
  9. ^ "Elsevier announces the winner of the first Ahmed Zewail Prize in Molecular Sciences". Archived from the original on 25 August 2012.
  10. ^ "A. David Buckingham | England Cricket | Cricket Players and Officials | ESPN Cricinfo". Archived from the original on 13 May 2018.
  11. ^ "CUCC Presidents".
  12. ^ Buckingham, A.D. (1959). "Direct Method of Measuring Molecular Quadrupole Moments". Journal of Chemical Physics. 30 (6): 1580–1585. Bibcode:1959JChPh..30.1580B. doi:10.1063/1.1730242.
  13. ^ Buckingham, A. D.; Disch, R. L. (1963). "The Quadrupole Moment of the Carbon Dioxide Molecule". Proceedings of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences. 273 (1353): 275. Bibcode:1963RSPSA.273..275B. doi:10.1098/rspa.1963.0088. S2CID 97286311.
  14. ^ Buckingham A.D., Schaffer T. and Schneider W.G. Solvent effects in nuclear magnetic resonance spectra, J. Chem. Phys., 32, 1960, 1227-1233, https://doi.org/10.1063/1.1730879
  15. ^ Buckingham A.D., Solvent effects in vibrational spectroscopy, Trans. Faraday Society, 56, 1960, 753-760, https://doi.org/10.1039/TF9605600753
  16. ^ Buckingham A.D. and Lovering E.G., Effects of a strong electric field on NMR spectra. The absolute sign of the spin coupling constant, Transactions Faraday Society, 58, 2077-2081 (1962), https://doi.org/10.1039/TF9625802077
  17. ^ Buckingham A.D. and Hibbard P., Polarizability and Hyperpolarizability of the Helium Atom, Symp. Faraday Society, 2, 1968, 41-47, https://doi.org/10.1039/SF9680200041
  18. ^ Barron L.D. and Buckingham A.D., Rayleigh and Raman Scattering from optically active molecules, Molecular Physics, 20, 1111-1119 (1971), https://doi.org/10.1080/00268977100101091
  19. ^ Buckingham A.D. Linear and nonlinear light scattering from the surface of liquids, Australian Journal of Physics, 43, 617-624 (1990), http://www.publish.csiro.au/ph/pdf/PH900617
  20. ^ Buckingham A.D. The theoretical background to vibrational optical activity, Faraday Discussions, 99, 1-12 (1994)Abstract

External links[edit]

Clary, David C.; Orr, Brian J. (1997). Optical, Electric and Magnetic Properties of Molecules: A review of the work of A.D.Buckingham. Elsevier. ISBN 0-444-82596-7. Retrieved 11 February 2022. a three-day symposium in Cambridge on 10–13 July 1997