Karle at her retirement in 2009
Isabella Helen Lugoski
December 2, 1921
|Died||October 3, 2017 (aged 95)|
|Alma mater||University of Michigan|
|Spouse(s)||Jerome Karle (m. 1942; 3 children)|
|Awards||Garvan–Olin Medal (1976)|
Gregori Aminoff Prize (1988)
Bower Award (1993)
National Medal of Science (1995)
|Doctoral advisor||Lawrence O. Brockway|
Isabella Karle (December 2, 1921 – October 3, 2017) was an American chemist who was instrumental in developing techniques to extract plutonium chloride from a mixture containing plutonium oxide. For her scientific work, Karle received the Garvan–Olin Medal, Gregori Aminoff Prize, Bower Award, National Medal of Science, and the Navy Distinguished Civilian Service Award (which is the Navy's highest form of recognition to civilian employees).
She was born as Isabella Helen Lugoski in Detroit, Michigan on December 2, 1921, the daughter of immigrants from Poland. She attended the local public schools, while at school, a female chemistry teacher led her to her pursuit of the field as a career. She attended the University of Michigan on full scholarship, where she majored in physical chemistry and received a Bachelor of Science at age 19, followed by Master of Science and Ph.D. degrees in the field. During her graduate work she met her future husband and scientific collaborator Jerome Karle; the two were both advised in their Ph.D. studies by Lawrence Brockway.:89
She joined the United States Naval Research Laboratory after the end of the war. Karle advanced the practical uses of the work her husband, Nobel Prize winner Jerome Karle, did on using X-ray scattering techniques to directly determine the structure of crystals, a technique that is used to study the biological, chemical, metallurgical and physical characteristics, allowing processes to be designed to duplicate the molecules being studied. This technique has played a major role in the development of new pharmaceutical products and other synthesized materials. She was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1993.
On July 31, 2009, she and her husband retired from the Naval Research Laboratory, after a combined 127 years of service to the United States Government, with Karle joining the NRL in 1946, two years after her husband. Retirement ceremonies for the Karles were attended by United States Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus, who presented the couple with the Department of the Navy Distinguished Civilian Service Award, the Navy's highest form of recognition to civilian employees.
- Louise Karle (born 1946) is a theoretical chemist
- Jean Karle (1950) is an organic chemist
- Madeleine Karle (1955) is a museum specialist with expertise in the field of geology.
- Garvan–Olin Medal (1976)
- Rear Admiral William S. Parsons Award (1988)
- Gregori Aminoff Prize (1988)
- Bijvoet Medal of the Bijvoet Center for Biomolecular Research (1989) 
- Bower Award (1993)
- National Medal of Science (1995)
- Navy Distinguished Civilian Service Award (2009)
- "Isabella L. Karle, chemist who helped reveal structure of molecules, dies at 95". Washington Post.
- Staff. " profile", Journal of Chemical Education. Accessed September 22, 2009.
- "Jerome Karle - Biographical". Nobelprize.org. Retrieved 10 March 2017.
- Kelly, Cynthia C. (27 January 2005). Remembering the Manhattan Project: Perspectives on the Making of the Atomic Bomb and Its Legacy. World Scientific. ISBN 9789814481786.
- McKinney, Donna. "Jerome and Isabella Karle Retire from NRL Following Six Decades of Scientific Exploration", United States Naval Research Laboratory press release dated July 21, 2009. Accessed September 22, 2009.
- "Book of Members, 1780–2010: Chapter K" (PDF). American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Retrieved July 29, 2014.
- Jerome Karle: The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 1985, Nobel Prize. Accessed September 22, 2009.
- "Bijvoet Medal". Bijvoet Center for Biomolecular Research. Retrieved 2017-09-12.
- Wayne, Tiffany K (2011). American women of science since 1900. ABC-CLIO. ISBN 9781598841596.
- Shearer, Benjamin F; Shearer, Barbara Smith (1997). Notable women in the physical sciences a biographical dictionary. Greenwood Press. ISBN 0313293031.</ref>
- 2015 Video interview with Isabella Karle by the Atomic Heritage Foundation Voices of the Manhattan Project
- 2005 Video Interview with Isabella Karle by the Atomic Heritage Foundation Voices of the Manhattan Project
- Massa, Antonia (2013). "Isabella Karle's Curious Crystal Method". Narratively: Human stories, boldly told. Retrieved 2013-12-05.