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Olga Kennard (née Weisz) (Lady Burgen)

(1924-), Crystallographer; former wife of David Kennard; later wife of Sir Arnold Burgen

Sitter in 1 portrait
Kennard's scientific career spanned the period from 1946 when structure determinations by X-ray techniques were more of an art than a science, to 1997 when such determinations became almost routine. After graduating from Newnham College, Cambridge, she started research at the Cavendish Laboratory, with Max Perutz on human haemoglobin. In 1948 she moved to London and worked first at the Vision Research Unit and subsequently at the National Institute for Medical Research. In 1961 she was seconded by the MRC to the Department of Chemistry in Cambridge where over the years she built up the Chemical Crystallography Group to tackle the structure determination of increasingly complex 'small' molecules.

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Olga Kennard (née Weisz) (Lady Burgen), by Julia Hedgecoe - NPG P751(13)

Olga Kennard (née Weisz) (Lady Burgen)

by Julia Hedgecoe
bromide print, 4 June 1998
NPG P751(13)


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