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Clinton Constant (1912-1999)

Clinton Constant was born in Nelson, British Columbia on 20 March 1912. After receiving a BSc degree in 1925 at the university in Alta, Canada, he continued his studies in chemistry at Western Reserve University where he earned his PhD in 1941. His specialties were inorganic chemistry and chemical engineering.

While he was in graduate school in Ohio, he worked first as a development engineer at Harshaw Chemical Company and then as a foremen and engineer at an acid plant there. In 1943 he joined the staff of Nyotex Chemical in Texas, where he was a plant superintendent. After four years, he had been promoted to chief development engineer there. By 1948, however, he decided to return to Harshaw Chemical Company in Ohio to take up a position as a senior chemical engineer. In the course of his career, Constant’s research centered around a variety of projects including chemical engineering design, the development of a slide rule for complex chemical formulation, the chemistry and production of anhydrous hydrofluoric acid, phosphates, napalm and automated production.

In addition to his membership in the American Astronomical Society, he was a member or fellow of several other scientific and professional society: the National Academy of Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Institute of Chemistry, the American Institute of Chemical Engineering, the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, and the New York Academy of Sciences.

After coping with Alzheimer’s disease, Clinton Constant died in his 87th year on Saturday, 6 November 1999. He passed away at his home on Meteor Drive in Victorville, California, where his wife of 34 years had taken care of him. In addition to his wife, he left his children and grandchildren. This obituary is based on material supplied by his family and found in American Men and Women of Science .

Obituary written by: Barbara L. Welther (Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory)

BAAS Citation: BAAS, 2001, 33, 1565

SAO/NASA ADS Bibcode: 2001BAAS...33R1565W

DOI: 10.3847/BAASOBIT2001003