Issue Date: September 24, 2012
Hassan S. El Khadem
Hassan S. El Khadem, 89, an emeritus professor of chemistry at American University, died of heart failure on May 20 during a trip to Cairo.
Born in Cairo, El Khadem earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry with honors from Cairo University in 1946 and a D.Sc. Tech. from ETH Zurich in 1950. Subsequently, he was awarded a Ph.D. in chemistry by Imperial College London in 1952 and D.Sc. degrees in chemistry by the University of Alexandria, in Egypt, in 1963 and the University of London in 1967.
He served as a lecturer at the University of Alexandria from 1952 until 1958, later becoming an assistant professor and then professor of organic chemistry. He was also a professor and Fulbright Scholar at Ohio State University.
El Khadem immigrated to the U.S. in 1969, accepting an appointment as professor of chemistry at Michigan Technological University. He was head of its department of chemistry and chemical engineering from 1974 until 1980 and Presidential Professor of chemistry from 1980 until 1984.
He then moved to American University, where he became the first Horace S. & May Davidson Isbell Chair. He retired in 1993.
El Khadem was an expert in the chemistry and properties of nitrogen heterocycles, phenylhydrazones, and osazones. He also studied the osotriazoles of sugars and anthracycline antibiotics, as well as the history of alchemy in ancient societies. He was an emeritus member of ACS, joining in 1963.
He is survived by a daughter, Samiha Lamerson; son, Saad; five grandsons; and one great-grandson. El Khadem’s wife of 51 years, Nadia, died in 2002.
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