James William McBain

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James William McBain
Born (1882-03-22)March 22, 1882
Chatham, New Brunswick
Died March 12, 1953(1953-03-12) (aged 70)
Nationality Canadian
Fields Chemistry
Institutions Stanford University
Bristol University
Alma mater University of Toronto
Heidelberg University
Doctoral advisor Georg Hermann Quincke
Doctoral students Jerome Vinograd
Known for Colloidal chemistry
Notable awards Davy Medal (1939)

James William McBain FRS[1] (March 22, 1882 – March 12, 1953) was a Canadian chemist.

He gained a Master of Arts at Toronto University and a Doctor of Science at Heidelberg University.

He carried out pioneering work in the area of micelles at the University of Bristol. As early as 1913 he postulated the existence of “colloidal ions”, now known as micelles, to explain the good electrolytic conductivity of sodium palmitate solutions. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in May 1923 [1][2] He won their Davy Medal in 1939.


  1. ^ a b Rideal, E. K. (1953). "James William McBain. 1882-1953". Obituary Notices of Fellows of the Royal Society. 8 (22): 529. doi:10.1098/rsbm.1953.0015. JSTOR 769227. 
  2. ^ "Library and Archive". Royal Society. Retrieved 2 October 2010.