Catholic Scientist of the Past

Jean-Baptiste Senderens

January 27, 1856 to September 26, 1937

Jean-Baptiste Senderens  (January 27, 1856 to September 26, 1937)  Senderens was a Catholic priest and chemist who did pioneering work in catalytic chemistry.  He collaborated extensively with Paul Sabatier, who won the Nobel Prize in chemistry in 1912 and was himself a devout Catholic.  Senderens and Sabatier co-authored almost fifty scientific research papers.  They were jointly awarded the Jecker Prize of the French Academy of Sciences for discovering the Sabatier-Senderens Process, which is a method of catalytic hydrogenation, one of whose uses is making margarine. Among their many other discoveries was how to produce major types of natural petroleum by modifying conditions for hydrogenating acetylene. In his 1912 Nobel lecture, Sabatier referred to Senderens six times as his collaborator. 

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