Frederick George Keyes

June 24, 1885–April 14, 1976

BY JOHN ROSS

FREDERICK GEORGE KEYES was an outstanding physical chemist who made notable theoretical and experimental advances in thermodynamics, equations of state of gases, and thermodynamic properties, in particular liquid water and steam. His early professional years coincided with the establishment of physical chemistry as an important division of science. He established bridges from science to engineering, from both of these fields to industrial research, and from all of these to the creation of an American industry of scientific instruments. Further, he established early a center for low-temperature research in the United States. The treatise ''Thermodynamic Properties of Steam," known as the "Steam Tables," coauthored with J. H. Keenan of the Department of Mechanical Engineering at MIT, has been used in the design and operation of steam generating power plants worldwide.

Keyes was born in Kingston, Ontario, Canada, on June 24, 1885. In his early childhood he received private instruction from his parents, and he rejected entering high school; he preferred spending his pre-college years in experimentation in his home. His formal education was begun in college where he received a B.S. degree from Rhode Island State College in 1907 and from Brown University



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